Feb. 15, 2003
NEWARK, Del., and BLACKSBURG, Va. - This weekend, the Terps track and field teams proved they are as strong apart as they are together. Competing in both the Virginia Tech Challenge and Delaware's Thomson Invitational, no Terp placed lower than 10th in their event and several recorded season-best and personal-best marks.
It was Maryland's strong set of throwers who made the trip to the Thomson Invitational in Newark, Del. Competing Friday night for the men's team were freshmen Beau Fay and Steve Williams. Fay took fourth in the weight throw with a distance of 50-0, while Williams placed eighth with a toss of 39-5.75. In the shot put, Fay threw a season-best distance of 44-11 to finish third in the field, with Williams not far behind in seventh. Representing the distance runners was freshman Pat McHenry, who finished the 3,000 meter race in 9:11.93 to take third. Combined, these athletes gave the three-man "team" seventh place.
The Terp women throwers swept second, third and fourth places in the shot put at Delaware. Junior Labelle Hillgrove led the way, with a throw of 43-6.5 that gave her second place. In third was freshman Zakiya Shivers, who set down a season-best distance of 42-4, followed by freshman Bria Johnson in fourth. In the weight throw, senior Aranda Brown captured the team's only first place finish of the meet, throwing a distance of 54-8.25. Hillgrove came in fourth in the shot put with a season-best toss of 50-10, and Johnson finished 10th with a 40-4.75. The finishes of these four throwers were combined into a team score of 37 points, which was good enough for fifth place.
Several states away at the Virginia Tech Challenge in Blacksburg, Va., the Terps fared equally well. Freshman Kierra Foster captured third-place finishes in the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 8.87 and in the long jump with a distance of 19-11.5. Finishing less than a second behind in the 60 meter hurdles was freshman Shenae Dawkins in fourth. A triple jump of 37-1.25 gave Dawkins 10th place at Friday night's competition. Taking her sixth consecutive top-three finish of the season was senior pole vaulter Natalie Dye, who successfully jumped a height of 12-5.5 to place third.
Some of the most remarkable accomplishments of the weekend were recorded by the Terp sprinters at the Virginia Tech Challenge. On the men's side, junior Harold Manning raced a to a new personal-best time in the 200 meter dash, finishing in 21.69 to take second. Sophomore Rob Frelow also ran well, placing seventh in the 400 meter with a time of 48.64.
Junior Toni Jefferson highlighted the sprints category for the women, running a personal-best time of 24.23 and finishing sixth. Junior Teyarnte' Carter finished less than a second behind in 10th, and placed sixth in the 60 meter dash with a time of 7.61. Another significant feat was accomplished by senior Devenn Hamilton, whose time of 55.90 in the 400 meters gave her seventh place and a new personal best in the event. Twin sister Dionne laid down a season-best time of 57.32 in the event, taking ninth overall. Also turning in a season best was freshman Allison Carney, who ran a 5:00.36 mile to place fourth.
Next weekend the Terps will reunite as they tackle the ACC Indoor Championships in Chapel Hill, N.C., where the Terp men hope to move up from their ninth place finish in 2002. The Terp women are looking to improve on their seventh place finish last indoor season. Their toughest competition will come from the Tar Heel women, who are currently the No. 1 team in the USTCA poll.