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Walker Wins Three Times at Christmas Invitational

December 10, 2005 · MT Media Relations
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee's track teams opened the indoor season Saturday at the MT Christmas Invitational at Murphy Center, posting 13 first-place finishes, including three from newcomer Juan Walker.

The women's team posted six victories, with one each from freshman Erika Palmer, senior Kerry Barrow, freshman Kaitlyn Hammond, senior Candice Robertson, sophomore Stephanie Tamgho and sophomore Lasean Bell. Wins for the men came from senior VanTonio Fraley, junior Sean Waller, junior Jonathan Guillou, junior James Thomas and the three from Walker, a junior transfer from Lindenwood College.

Walker won the long jump with a mark of 24-7.5 and then the triple jump with a mark of 47-9.5. About a half hour later the Hunters Lane High School product took the 55-meter hurdles in 7.51.

Fraley won the 55-meter dash in 6.25, while Walker was fourth in 6.36, and Linnie Yarbrough and Samuel Adade tied for sixth in 6.51. Peterson Senatus was right behind Walker for second place in the 55-meter hurdles in 7.68.

Waller won the 400-meters in 49.10 in his return to the track. Another Hunters Lane product, Waller missed last spring with academic difficulties. Jermaine Barton was fifth in 50.01 in the 400 behind Waller. Fraley, Adade and Senatus were 2-3-4 in the 200-meters in 21.40, 21.62 and 22.04, respectively.

Tony Carufe finished second in the mile in 4:33.70 while Matt Young was seventh in 4:54.03. Ryan Hood placed third in the 800-meters in 2:03.28.

Guillou and Dell placed 1-2 in the 3000-meters, in times of 8:45.51 and 8:51.95 after both posted strong showings during the cross country season.

The men's 4x400-meter relay of Adade-Senatus-Barton-Walker placed second in 3:16.74 behind an unattached team that included former Blue Raiders Godfrey Herring and Tim Hicks.

In the field events, Julius Defour was second in the high jump with a mark of 6-2.

Waller was fourth in the long jump with a mark of 23-3, with Yarbrough sixth (22-4.75) and Fraley seventh (22-3.5).

Brandon Jones (46-0.25), JaKeith Hairston (44-10) and Yarbrough (44-2.5) were third, fourth and fifth, respecetively, in the triple jump.

In the shot put Thomas and Willie Parker were third and fourth with marks of 48-8 and 46-4, respectively. Nick Diel was sixth with a mark of 42-6. Thomas won the weight throw with a mark of 50-1, while Diel was fourth (48-3) and Parker placed sixth (43-11).

For the women, Robertson and Tamgho finished 1-2 in the 55-meter hurdles in 8.20 and 8.67, respectively, while Iceca Epps was fifth in 9.51.

In the women's 55-meters, Palmer finished third in 7.23 and Owens was fourth in 7.30. Barrow won the 400-meters in 56.49 while TraMayne Gillyard placed fourth in 58.52 and Antranette Stringer was fifth in 58.89. Shanna-Kay Campbell pulled up with a hamstring injury about halfway through the 400-meter race.

Palmer and Owens were 1-2 in the 200-meters in 25.05 and 25.48, respectively, and Robertson placed fifth in 26.14.

Ashley Comstock finished fifth in the women's mile in 5:20.30 in a strong field, and Marjorie Gombert was second in the 800-meters in 2:19.52 while Carlissa Shaw placed fifth in 2:26.52.

Hammond led three Middle Tennessee runners in the 3000-meters, winning in a time of 10:35.26. Sara Lunning was fourth in 11:01.88 and Tiffany Sawyer was sixth in 11:32.05.

Tamgho placed first in the long jump with a mark of 18-10.25, with Sierra Douglas second after jumping 18-0.5. Tamgho was second in the triple jump with a mark of 39-6.5, and Douglas placed fourth in 36-9.5.

Meaghan Byrd finished second in the shot put with a mark of 43-3 and Bell was eighth (33-9). Bell won the weight throw with a mark of 50-5.5 and Byrd was third (49-5).

The women's 4x400-meter relay of Palmer, Stringer, Gillyard and Owens finished fourth in 4:00.63, and the team of Shaw, Aleece McKnight, Gombert and Comstock placed ninth in 4:27.54.

"This was a very good first meet for our team and specifically for Juan [Walker]," head coach Dean Hayes said. "We had high hopes for Juan and he really performed well today.

"Overall both teams placed well and we were able to find out some things in competition. It was good for our team and also good for the coaching staff as a whole. We'll take a little time off and then get back at it after the holidays."

Both returns will take off for the holidays and return to action January 13-14 at the Kentucky Invitational in Lexington, Ky.

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