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Photo: Cheryl Treworgy/PrettySporty.com

Thursday June 7, 2012Barbiasz Ties Florida High Jump Record on Second Day of NCAA Championships

Des Moines, Iowa

Photo: Cheryl Treworgy/PrettySporty.com

Junior Dwight Barbiasz (Milford, N.H.) set a new personal best and tied the Florida program record in the men’s high jump, clearing 2.28m/7-5.75 and finishing third on the second day of the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, hosted by Drake University.

 

Barbiasz matched David Furman’s (1997-2000) school record from the 1997 SEC Outdoor Championships and his third-place finish marks the highest finish for the Gator men in the high jump outdoors since Furman was a runner-up at the 2000 NCAA Outdoor Championships as a senior.

 

The New Hampshire native did not miss an attempt until he attempted to clear 2.31m/7-7, and his PR of 2.28m/7-5.75 matches the Olympic “A” Standard and automatically qualifies him for a spot at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.

 

“Dwight has had a phenomenal year for us,” Florida head coach Mike Holloway said. “When he came to us in January, he was a bit of a question mark but Coach (Mellanee) Welty and Dwight have worked so hard all year and he’s improved tremendously. I just have to tip my hat to Dwight and I couldn’t be prouder of his performances all year and especially today.”

 

Sophomore Cory McGee (Pass Christian, Miss.) raced in one of the fastest 1,500-meter semifinals in NCAA Championship history, as the All-American finished fourth in her heat and seventh overall in 4:12.93, advancing to her second consecutive women’s 1,500 meters final.

 

“Cory has had a phenomenal year as well,” Holloway noted. “I’m very proud of her performance today. We had a race plan set out and we talked about it before she went on the track. It was a fast heat and a fast semifinal and she stuck to the plan. I can’t wait to see her compete on Saturday.”

 

The Mississippi native matched the Olympic “A” standard, a time she surpassed with her PR performance at Stanford’s Payton Jordan Invitational in April (4:12.61). Seven women in the semifinals finished with an “A” standard, automatically qualifying for the U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore. at the end of the month.

 

Sophomore Eddie Lovett (West Palm Beach, Fla.) earned a spot in his first NCAA Outdoor Championships final, finishing seventh overall in the men’s 110-meter hurdles with an all-conditions personal best of 13.53 (+2.2). Lovett finished 18th overall a year ago at NCAA Outdoors, failing to advance to the final eight. Lovett will now have a scoring opportunity for the Gators on Saturday morning.

 

“The thing about Eddie Lovett is that he’s a competitor,” Holloway commented. “He always shows up at the big meets. He won at SEC Indoors, scored at NCAA Indoors and now he’s in his first NCAA final outdoors. He’s worked so hard this year and I’m extremely proud of him and Coach (Erin) Tucker and the work they’ve put in together.

 

The men’s 4x400-meter relay, composed of Dedric Dukes (Miami, Fla.) and Hugh Graham, Jr. (Miami, Fla.) Leonardo Seymore (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) and Tony McQuay (Riviera Beach, Fla.), ran a season best 3:02.34 to win their heat and finish fifth overall, advancing to the finals of the event on Saturday.

 

The Gators were as far back as third at one point but McQuay used his trademark speed to close on Southern California’s Reggie Wyatt on the anchor leg to win the heat for the Orange and Blue with a 44.82 split.

 

The women’s 4x400-meter relay, comprised of Ebony Eutsey (Miami, Fla.), Amani Bryant (Tampa, Fla.), Lanie Whittaker (Miami, Fla.) and Ugonna Ndu (Newark, N.J.), finished third in the first heat of the event in 3:31.48. The quartet had seemed to just miss out on qualifying for Saturday’s final by .42 but an official ruled that in another heat, Illinois had broken Rule 5-5-2-b (running inside lane line or curve).

 

The move disqualified the Illini and gave the Gators the eighth spot in the women’s 4x400-meter relay final on Saturday morning.

 

Sophomore SEC Champion Stipe Zunic (Zadar, Croatia) scored in the men’s javelin, throwing 73.99m/242-9 on his second throw of the competition to finish seventh overall and score two points for the Gators.

 

“I know Stipe isn’t happy with his finish today but this one meet does not define the year he’s had for us,” Holloway said. “He won every meet he competed in before today and is the SEC Champion as just a sophomore. We can’t wait to see what Stipe will do in the future after such a phenomenal year.”

 

Sophomore Brittany Harrell (McComb, Miss.) currently sits in 12th after the first day of the women’s heptathlon. The 2012 SEC Outdoor Champion has 3,339 points after four events on Thursday. Harrell started the day in the first heat of the 100-meter hurdles, finishing third in her heat and 15th overall in 14.07 to score 968 points.

 

She then finished in a tie for sixth in the high jump, clearing 1.69m/5-6.50 for 842 points. The next event was the shot put, as Harrell used a toss of 11.45m/37-6.75 to score 625 points before moving into the final event of the day, the 200 meters. Harrell finished second in her heat and 14th overall in the 200 meters in 24.81 to secure 904 points.

 

The sophomore will compete in the long jump, javelin and 800 meters to close out the heptathlon on Friday, beginning at 3 p.m. CT.

 

Action continues on Friday, as junior thrower and 2012 SEC Champion Jeremy Postin (Auburndale, Fla.) competes in the men’s hammer throw at 2 p.m. CT, followed by Harrell in the heptathlon.

 

“We’ve got a lot of good finals tomorrow,” Holloway noted. “We’ve got Jeremy in the hammer, Tony in the 400, Omar Craddock and Marquis Dendy in the triple jump, Taylor Burke in the high jump and Gen LaCaze in the steeplechase. Not only do we have a lot of scoring opportunities on Friday but I think there are exciting things in store for the Gators tomorrow.

 

“The bulk of the meet starts on Friday and this is where things get exciting,” Holloway continued. “We’ll rest up and get ready tomorrow and be ready to fight a little bit.”

 

Live results for Friday’s events can be found here and ESPN3 will carry Friday’s broadcast beginning at 5:30 p.m. CT. The ESPN announcing team is comprised of Trey Bender (play-by-play), Larry Rawson (analyst) and Jill Montgomery (reporter).

 

For all of the latest information on Florida track and field, please log on to www.GatorZone.com/trackfield or, for up-to-the-minute updates, follow Florida track and field on Twitter at @GZTrackField or www.twitter.com/GZTrackField. You can also find the Gators on Facebook.

 

NCAA OUTDOOR TRACK & FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS (JUNE 6-9, 2012 – DES MOINES, IA)

 

THURSDAY, JUNE 7, 2012

 

MULTI EVENTS

 

Women’s Heptathlon (Through Four Events)

12.          Brittany Harrell, 3339 points

 

Women’s 100-Meter Hurdles

15.          Brittany Harrell, 14.07 (-0.2) (968 points)

 

Women’s High Jump

T6.          Brittany Harrell, 1.69m/5-6.50 (842 points)

 

Women’s Shot Put

14.          Brittany Harrell, 11.45m/37-6.75 (625 points)

 

Women’s 200 Meters

14.          Brittany Harrell, 24.81 (+1.4) (904 points)

 

FIELD EVENTS

 

Men’s High Jump – Final

3.             Dwight Barbiasz, 2.28m/7-5.75 (PR) (SR)

 

Men’s Javelin – Final

7.             Stipe Zunic, 73.99m/242-9

 

RUNNING EVENTS

 

Women’s 200 Meters – Semifinal

17.          Darshay Davis, 23.41 (+2.2)

 

Men’s 200 Meters – Semifinal

11.          Dedric Dukes, 20.68 (+0.4)

 

Women’s 1,500 Meters – Semifinal

7.             Cory McGee, 4:12.93Q

 

Women’s 10,000 Meters – Final

20.          Florence Ngetich, 34:43.33

 

Men’s 110-Meter Hurdles – Semifinal

7.             Eddie Lovett, 13.53q (+2.2) (wPR)

 

Women’s 4x400-Meter Relay – Semifinal

8.             Florida (Ebony Eutsey, Amani Bryant, Lanie Whittaker, Ugonna Ndu), 3:31.48

 

Men’s 4x400-Meter Relay – Semifinal

5.             Florida (Dedric Dukes, Hugh Graham, Jr., Leonardo Seymore, Tony McQuay), 3:02.34Q

 

PR – personal record

SR – school record

wPR – all conditions personal record

 

Friday, June 8 – all times CT

2:00pm

Men’s Hammer Final

Jeremy Postin

3:00pm

Heptathlon Long Jump

Brittany Harrell

4:15pm

Heptathlon Javelin

Brittany Harrell

4:30pm

Women’s High Jump Final

Taylor Burke

4:30pm

Men’s Triple Jump Final

Omar Craddock, Marquis Dendy

6:30pm

Women’s 3,000m Steeplechase Final

Genevieve LaCaze

6:45pm

Heptathlon 800 Meters

Brittany Harrell

6:55pm

Men’s 400 Meters Final

Tony McQuay

 

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