April 19, 2007
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - University of Maryland junior Toni Aluko got her team off to the best start possible Thursday, winning the women's high jump in the first event completed at the 2007 Atlantic Coast Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships hosted at the Kehoe Track Complex.
Aluko, a Terrapin junior, went a career-best 5 feet, 10 inches to earn the victory. She scored a come-from-behind victory over Debra Vento of Duke and earned the win despite coming into the competition as the third seed.
Aluko and Vento cleared 5-5, while Vento cleared 5-7 and 5-8.75 on her first attempt. Aluko cleared 5-7 and 5-8.75 on her third try, giving Vento the edge in tie-breaking procedures. The clearance at 5-8.75 gave Aluko a qualifying mark for the NCAA East Regionals in May and she became the second Terp to earn an NCAA invitation.
Jumping first in the order and with the rest of the field having missed at 5-7, Aluko cleared 5-10 on her first attempt. Vento missed all three tries at that height and Aluko earned her first ACC title with the third-best mark ever recorded by a Terrapin in that event.
Also for the Terrapins on Thursday, junior Christina Smith leads the women's heptathlon after four events with 3,342 points. One day into the heptathlon, Smith is 300 points ahead of her career-best pace, which is also Maryland's sixth-highest all-time score in the event.
Smith's total of 3,342 leads Amy Seward of Miami, who finished the first day with 3,237, and Gunild Kreb of Virginia Tech, who was at 3,114.
Smith tied for the top mark in the heptathlon high jump (5-6) and had a season best in the heptathlon 100-meter hurdles (14.58) for second. She also finished second in the heptathlon shot put with a season-best mark of 41-4.50 and second in the heptathlon 200-meter dash with a season-best time of 24.73.
Junior Aysha Gregory had a season best and ECAC-qualifying mark in the hammer throw for seventh place at 176-11. Senior Zakiya Shivers placed 10th in the hammer throw with an ECAC-qualifying mark of 169-11.
Five Kehoe Track records were broken during day one of the ACC outdoor meet. Senior Tamara Burns of Virginia Tech earned the stadium record in the women's hammer (198-5) and senior Nick Owens of North Carolina posted the stadium record in the men's hammer (223-3).
In the men's javelin, senior Justin Ryncavage of North Carolina broke the Kehoe record with a mark of 233-5.
The stadium records for both the men's and women's 10,000-meter run fell in the evening with junior Matt Clark of Clemson running a time of 29:46.26 and senior Michelle Sikes of Wake Forest posting an ACC record of 32:59.20.
After the first day of competition, Virginia Tech leads the women's side with 22 points, followed by Duke in second with 21 and Virginia in third with 20. Maryland is tied for sixth place with NC State and Florida State, each scoring 12 points.
North Carolina is in the lead for the men after day one with 32 points, followed by NC State in second with 22 and Florida State in third with 19. Maryland did not score points in today's three finals for men.
The ACC Championships will continue Friday with events starting at 10:00 a.m. Saturday's events begin at 11 a.m., with the awards ceremony completing the championships at 4:15 p.m. Admission is free to all events.
WOMEN'S TEAM SCORES (through 4 of 21 events)
1. Virginia Tech 22, 2. Duke 21, 3. Virginia 20, 4. Wake Forest 17, 5. Clemson 14, T6. Maryland 12, T6. NC State 12, T6. Florida State 12, 9. Miami 10, T10. Georgia Tech 8, T10. North Carolina, 8.
WOMEN'S INDIVIDUAL RESULTS (First-place and Maryland finishers)
MEN'S TEAM SCORES (through 3 of 21 events)
1. North Carolina 32, 2. NC State 22, 3. Florida State 19, 4. Virginia Tech 17, 5. Virginia 12, 6. Clemson 10, t7. Wake Forest 2, t7. Georgia Tech 2, 9. Duke 1.
MEN'S INDIVIDUAL RESULTS