Gbagbeke qualifies at Middle Tennessee Invitational

Cox continues to dominate in 2010

February 6, 2010 · Christian Lemon

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Stanley Gbagbeke's leap of 25-5.25 (7.75m) in the long jump earned the Nigeria native a NCAA Provisional qualifier at the Saturday's Middle Tennessee Classic at Murphy Center.

Gbagbeke's qualifier came on the third jump of the preliminary round to take first place overall in the event. He outperformed his previous season by two inches and currently sits in the sixth slot on the NCAA descending order list. The junior also competed in the 55 meter dash finishing in a preliminary time of 6.50.

David Emery took first place in the 800 meters in a time of 1:54.78. Emery surged past Kendall Gregory of Western Kentucky in the last 10 meters of the contest to take the victory. His time set an indoor lifetime best.

Roscoe Payne was the top collegiate finisher in the 55 meters hurdles crossing the line in a time of 7.44 setting a career best. Teammate DeRay Sloss placed third in 7.50.

Sprinter Robert Carter came in third in the 55 meter dash in 6.51 with teammate Philip Tanner placing sixth in 6.60.

Brittany Cox continued her amazing 2010 indoor season as the Antioch, Tenn., native broke her own Sun Belt and Middle Tennessee records in both the shot put and weight throw for the second consecutive week. She also took victory in both events. Her toss of 53-5.5 (16.29m) in the shot put currently ranks her ninth in the NCAA while her weight throw mark of 67-6 (20.57m) places her fifth on the descending order list.

When asked about her continued improvement throughout the year Cox responded, "One of my goals this year is to qualify for NCAA Championships. I have to keep working hard every week to stay towards the top of the list so I will get to compete."

Nyeisha Wright performed well in the triple jump and long jump taking victory in both events with recorded leaps of 38-8.75 (11.8m) and 19-11 (6.07m), respectively. Wright is having a strong 2010 season and will compete in four different events for the Blue Raiders at the conference championships.

Cherice Robertson continued to perform well taking first in both the high jump (5-7 [1.7m]) and 55 meter hurdles (7.91).

In the 3,000 meters, Stephanie Smith and Alissa Ruggle performed strong each running season bests. Smith placed second overall in the event in 10:34.45 with Ruggle finishing sixth in 10:43.97.

Kiara Henry placed second in the 55 meter dash in 7.18.

"We had some good performances," said head coach Dean Hayes. "Brittany is having and unbelievable season, but some of our other athletes who will be called upon to score for us at the conference championships are showing great improvement."

The teams will be at home next weekend as they play host their final tune-up meet of the indoor season, the MT Valentine Invitational, before hosting the Sun Belt Conference Championships in three weeks at Murphy Center. Full results and coverage will be available on goblueraiders.com.

Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.