May 17, 2014

Upstate Takes Home Five Medals on Final Day of A-Sun Outdoor Championships

Jacksonville, Fla.  – The USC Upstate track and field team received five All-Conference honors on Saturday as the Spartans wrapped up competition at the 2014 Atlantic Sun Outdoor Track and Field Championships from Hodges Stadium.

The Spartan women recorded 71.5 points as a team, their most in program history, en route to a 6th place finish. The men also finished in 6th place after compiling 35 points.

Brittany Walls began the day for Upstate by earning her second straight Third Team All-Conference honor in the heptathlon after compiling a school record 4,537 points. She broke her previous school mark by 219 points set during last year's A-Sun Championships. Walls would set personal-bests in the javelin throw and 800-meter run during the heptathlon. KeAndrea Ladson finished 7th with a personal-best score of 3,892 points as she posted a personal-best time in the 800-meter run of 3:05.06.

The women's 4x100-meter relay team of Semaj Tolliver, Dominique Nock, Heaven Briggs and Brenicke Johnson followed later in the day by capturing the program's first All-Conference honor in the event. The combination turned in a time of 45.92, finishing just .14 seconds behind conference champion Kennesaw State.

Essence Jackson became the third Spartan on the day to record the program's first All-Conference accolade as she was placed on the Third Team for the 800-meter run. She finished with a time of 2:14.01 in the event, setting a new personal-best and breaking her own school record.

Walls then picked up her second All-Conference honor of the day in the high jump as she earned Second Team recognition. She becomes the first female athlete in program history to finish in the top three for the high jump as she broke her own school record with a 2nd place leap of 1.71-meters.

Destinie Sykes also broke her own school record in the triple jump after a leap of 11.81-meters led to a 6th place performance. Nock added a 5th place finish in the 100-meter dash finals after turning in a time of 12.09.

A total of 14 personal-bests were set on Saturday by the Upstate women including Walls, Ladson, Sykes and Jackson. The others that collected new personal-bests included:  Tolliver (200-meter dash), Nia Payne (1500-meter run), Heaven Briggs (400-meter dash), Ashley Edmond (200-meter dash, 400-meter dash) and Janay Chisolm (5000-meter run). Briggs set a new school record in the 400-meter dash as she finished 5th with a time of 57.17.

Michael Smith led the Spartan men during the final day as he took home Third Team All-Conference honors in the triple jump. Smith is the first Spartan male athlete to be named All-Conference in the triple jump as he just missed breaking his own school record with a mark of 14.64-meters.

Matt Johnson contributed a 4th place performance in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:54.29. Brandon Goodman also finished 4th in the triple jump behind Smith with a leap of 14.09-meters. Jake McKown then became the school's new record holder in the 400-meter hurdles, previously held by Kyle Jones, after running a personal-best time of 55.18.

Cameron Pratt and Jonathan Jackson each had new personal-bests in their respective events. Pratt ran a 57.36 in the 400-meter hurdles and Jackson a 23.80 in the 200-meter dash.

Kennesaw State captured the men's team championship with 311 points, while Jacksonville won the women's championship with 203.5 points.

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