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Track & Field closes competition at SBC Championships

Men finish third, women sixth

May 13, 2012 · Athletic Communications

LAFAYETTE, La. -- The Middle Tennessee men’s track & field team captured a third-place finish while the Blue Raider women finished sixth at the 2012 Sun Belt Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

The men came away with 108 total points while the women’s squad amassed 75. North Texas took the women’s team title while Western Kentucky won on the men’s side.

The Blue Raiders were led on Sunday by their relay teams as both the men and women claimed runner-up finishes in the 4x100-meter relays. In addition, Geoffrey Akena, Roscoe Payne, Steven Palmer and Noah Akwu guided the men to victory in the 4x400-meter relay, winning with a time of 3 minutes, 10.03 seconds.

Middle Tennessee had another nice day in the jumps events on Sunday. Senior Nyeisha Wright captured a runner-up finish in the women’s triple jump with a leap of 41 feet, 5 inches (12.62 meters). She was followed in third place by France Makabu who posted a measurement of 41-2.50 (12.56m). Euphemia Edem closed out the top five, jumping 40-6.25 (12.35).

On the men’s side, 2012 Sun Belt Indoor Triple Jump Champion Cordairo Golden also placed second. The sophomore recorded a leap of 50-6.25 (15.40m) to come away with the runner-up result.

Golden also placed fifth in the men’s high jump competition, successfully clearing the bar at 6-5.00 (1.96m). Cameron Zeman cleared the bar at the same measurement and came in sixth place as a result of the number of jumps.

Payne and Akwu led the Middle Tennessee men in the sprints events. Payne captured victory in the men’s 110-meter hurdles, crossing the finish line in 13.91 seconds. Fellow Blue Raider Junior Cadet finished sixth in the event in 14.77 seconds. Payne also placed third in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 50.76 seconds.

Meanwhile Akwu won the 200 meters in 20.74 seconds. He also led a trio of Blue Raiders in the 400 meters, clocking a time of 46.90 seconds to place fifth. Palmer and Rycine Ellison followed in fifth and sixth with times of 48.00 and 48.68 seconds.

In the men’s 100 meters, Kenneth Gilstrap placed fifth with a time of 10.54 seconds.

Kiara Henry closed out her Middle Tennessee career with a great day on Sunday. She claimed a runner-up finish in the women’s 200 meters with a time of 24.11 seconds while also placing third in the 100-meter dash, recording a time of 11.62 seconds.

The women meanwhile were led in the 400-meter hurdles by Christal Wilson. The freshman notched a runner-up finish as she completed the competition in 1:00.24.

Justus David once again led the way for the Blue Raider distance runners as he logged a time of 3:50.96 to post a second-place finish in the men’s 1,500 meters. Meanwhile in the 800 meters, Robinson Simatei placed eighth while running a 1:59.19. Autumn Gipson and Stephanie Smith paced the women’s distance runners, placing 10th and 11th in the women’s 1,500-meter run on Sunday.

Fans are encouraged to continue follow the teams on Twitter @MTTrackField and on Facebook at the MT Track & Field page as photos will be posted as the teams make their way back home on Monday.

A number of Blue Raiders will head to Jacksonville, Fla., to compete in the NCAA Regionals which take place May 24-26. Please stay posted to the teams' Facebook and Twitter pages as well as GoBlueRaiders.com as the competitors are made known.

Also, stay up-to-date on the teams on the new Track & Field Notebook, which can be found here as well as linked on the Track & Field page on GoBlueRaiders.com.

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