Myrtle Ferguson's squad visited the Cannon IV Classic and the Ball State
Open and came away with 11 personal-record performances, two NCAA automatic
times and five provisional marks.
Beth Gehring and Tracy Carrington got the ball rolling on Friday night
in Muncie, Ind., as they wowed the crowd at BSU's Field Sports Building
with some impressive marks on the pole vault. Soaring two feet higher than
their nearest competitor, Gehring and Carrington each cleared 11-2.50 to
break Leslie Henley's UT record and joined their teammate on the NCAA Indoor
Championships provisional qualifier list. Gehring got the first-place nod
by virtue of hitting that height on her first attempt, while Carrington
sailed over that level on her third and final attempt.
Also in Muncie, Tennessee went one-three-eight in the 55-meter dash,
with Quintessa Harps (7.09 seconds) and Erica Witter (7.12) setting personal
records. Marquita Knight clocked in at 7.30.
Meanwhile, in Indianapolis on Friday night, Kellie White was up to the
challenge, as she cranked out consecutive NCAA automatic times in the 60-meter
dash. She won her heat with a 7.32 in prelims and went on to take second
in 7.33. Teammates Anissa Campbell and Jabeanna Morris also competed, with
Campbell clocking a 7.59 in the finals. Morris' 7.69 was not good enough
to make the finals against an NCAA Championships-caliber field.
In other Cannon events on Friday, Mindy Watkins shaved 22 seconds off
of her 5,000-meter personal best time in crossing the line at 18:00.89,
while Campbell fouled in three attempts in the long jump competition.
Saturday saw White automatically qualify in her second event. She notched
a 23.59 in the 200-meter dash to finish fourth and lower her personal record
in that race. Erica Witter (24.87) and Natalie Johnson (25.69) also competed
in that event.
Provisional times were achieved by two of UT's entrants in the 400-meter
dash. Saidah Jones (54.95) and Lesly Love (55.19) did so, with Love and
Erin Rinear (57.67) recording personal bests in the event. For Jones, it
was the second time she finished below the provisional mark this season.
Others recording personal records were Maureen Ferris (4:57.68) and Meghan
Mantlo (5:22.91) in the mile and Kristen Ritter in the 3,000-meters (10:23.07).
The 4x400-meter relay unit of Love, Rinear, White and Jones dipped below
the provisional mark but just missed equaling UT's best time in that event
(3:42.30) this season. Michelle Elfervig (1.72m/5-7.75) was a hair's breadth
from a personal record in tying for seventh in the high jump.
On Friday the Lady Vols will compete in their first and only home indoor
meet of the season, as they join the men's team in hosting the Tennessee
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