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Tech Track and Field Improves Standing for NCAAs at Virginia Tech Last Chance Meet

March 1, 2003

Complete Results

BLACKSBURG, Va. – Several Jackets improved their qualifying marks for the upcoming NCAA Indoor Championships, and sophomore Zeb Sion erased the oldest indoor school record on the books, as the Georgia Tech men’s and women’s track and field teams had an impressive day of competition at the Virginia Tech Last Chance Meet at the Hokies’ Rector Field House.

ACC Rookie of the Year Chaunte Howard led the way with an automatic qualifying mark of 6’0.75″ in a victory in the high jump. This performance assures her of a trip to the 2003 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, March 14-15 in Fayetteville, Ark.

Sophomore Shanta Smith, freshman Jessica Graff and senior Jessica DeFreitas each aided their chances of joining Howard at the national championships by improving their respective qualifying marks. Smith surpassed her own school record in the triple jump with a provisional leap of 42’8.75″, which was good for a second-place finish, while DeFreitas took third in the triple jump with a season-best mark of 42’6.75″. As for Graff, she eclipsed her own Tech record in the pole vault by clearing 13’2.50″ to place first.

On the men’s side, Sion took third in the shot put with a toss of 57’8.25″, which eclipsed a school record that has stood since 1961. Ed Nutting held the former mark of 57’4.00″. Classmate Jonathan Spillman was fourth in the shot put.

Junior Brendon Mahoney posted the lone provisional mark of the day for the men with a time of 1:50.17 in a second-place finish in the 800 meters. Senior Bryan Swarn was fifth in the event with a time of 1:51.48.

The women also picked up victories from junior Amandi Rhett, who won the 60-meter dash in 7.45, and DeFreitas, who placed first in the long jump in 20’3.75″. Rhett was also third in the 200 meters in a season-best 24.14.

Senior Sharif Azim also had a big day for the men, placing fourth in the 200 meters in 21.89 and fifth in the 400 meters in 48.11. Both marks were season bests.

Sophomore Neil McDonagh, who ran 4:10.94 in the mile, senior Brian Fraser, who was second in the triple jump, and sophomore Ian Brewer, who placed third in the weight throw, also had impressive performances.

The Jackets have one more attempt to improve their standing for the NCAA Championships, as Tech travels to the Iowa State Classic in Ames, Iowa, March 8.

-GT-

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