May 31, 2003
FAIRFAX, Va. – Georgia Tech’s men’s 4×400-meter relay placed second, and junior Brendon Mahoney took third in the 1500 meters to lead a group of four qualifiers for next month’s NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the NCAA East Region Championships Saturday at George Mason Stadium. Tech’s men finished seventh with 26 points, while the women placed 11th with 16 points. Florida claimed both team titles.
Joining the 4×400 and Mahoney at the national meet following qualifying performances Saturday will be sophomore Zeb Sion (shot put) and freshman Chaunte Howard (high jump). Sophomore Ian Brewer qualified in the hammer throw Friday to give the Jackets five combined qualifiers. The 2003 NCAA Outdoor Championships are set for June 11-14 in Sacramento, Calif.
The 4×400-meter relay team of sophomore Brian Ford, senior Sharif Azim, freshman Nate Smiga and senior Bryan Swarn provided the day’s best showing for the men. The quartet posted a season-best time of 3:06.92 en route to a second-place finish.
A two-time All-American, Mahoney clocked a season-best time of 3:43.30 in the 1500 meters to secure his fourth trip to an NCAA Championship. Sion will compete at the NCAA Championships for the first time after finishing fifth in the shot put with a toss of 57’11.50″. The Tech men have four qualifiers for the NCAA Outdoor Championships for the first time since the Jackets took seven entries to nationals in 2000.
An All-American during the indoor season, Howard will make a return trip to nationals following a fourth-place showing in the high jump Saturday. She cleared 5’9.50″.
Junior Amandi Rhett narrowly missed qualifying in both the 100 and 200 meters, as she was seventh in the 100 (11.59) and sixth in the 200 (23.80). She also anchored the Jackets’ 4×100-meter relay team of sophomore Dana Rogers, freshman Andriane Lapsley and senior Jessica DeFreitas that finished fifth in 44.56. Rogers was also seventh in the 100-meter hurdles in 13.67. Despite not automatically qualifying, individuals and relays can earn entry into the NCAA Championships as at-large selections.
In addition to anchoring the relay to a runner-up finish, Swarn had a solid showing with a seventh-place finish in the 400 meters and a time of 46.42.
In the triple jump, sophomore Shanta Smith placed 11th for the women, as did Brian Fraser on the men’s side. Senior Jamie Ostrov took 15th in women’s high jump. Additionally, sophomore Jonathan Spillman was 12th in the shot put, while freshman Simone Parker was 19th in the discus. Spencer Irvine was 28th in the men’s triple jump, and freshman Brandy Depland was 32nd in the women’s event.