Kentucky Invite: Georgians clean up - 3 US#1s, Williams triple, two doubles

Coverage of the 2012 U. of Kentucky Invitational

Sat., Feb. 18, 2012 - Nutter Fieldhouse, Lexington KY

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  • G-HJ/LJ/55H: US#1 5-11 HJ for Kell (Marietta, Ga.) jr Kendell Williams (The Heat TC), improving her own national leader by a quarter inch, followed by a 19-1.25 LJ and 8.57 55H triumphs (both just off her seasonal PRs).

  • G-400: US#1 53.87 meet record 400 for Martin Luther King GA sr Felicia Brown (Sprint Athletic).

  • B-60H: US#1 7.80 for Union Grove GA sr Jordan Moore (Sprint Athletics).

  • B-400/200: Great double for Sprayberry GA Michael Newton (The Heat TC), running US#2 47.58, then US#4 21.56.

  • G-60/200: Another fine sprint double with Martin Luther King GA jr Jada Martin (Sprint Athletics) hitting US#8 7.55, then US#3 24.00.

  • B-60: 6.83 for St. John's, Antigua sr Tahir Walsh, in his first US indoor meet. US#2 6.82 for Justin Scruggs TN in the prelims; he ran 6.92 for 3rd in the final.

  • B-2Mile: US#2 9:10.31 for Reynoldsburg OH sr Tsehaye Hiluf, edging #3 9:10.93 for Oakland TN jr Brock Baker.

  • B-Mile: US#3 4:13.57 for Lancaster OH sr Brandon Kidder, kicking strong to win by almost two seconds.

  • G-800: US#3 2:11.78 for McAuley OH sr Danielle Pfeiffer.

  • G-PV: US#5 12-6 for Center Grove IN sr Sydney Clute, winning a battle with two other 12-footers. Pandora OH sr Ellie Braidic was 2nd at 12-3 and Lawrence Central IN sr Kimyanna Rudolph 3rd at 12-0

  • G-Mile: 5:01.75 for Medina OH sr Anna Boyert.

  • B-SP: 58-1 for Carmel sr Langston Newton.

  • B-HJ: Lawrence Central IN sr C.J. Smith, a 6-10.5 jumper, settles for 6-6 in defending his title.


Preview: Williams looks to triple again

Jumper, hurdler, multi-eventer extraordinaire Kendell Williams, entered in four events, will highlight another great multi-state field at Saturday’s Kentucky Invitational at Nutter Fieldhouse in Lexington.

Meet officials are expecting athletes from 15 states, plus Canada and Antigua. Other standouts include 4:06-miler Brandon Kidder, Georgia sprint sensations Jada Martin, Briana Vaughn and Felicia Brown (as well as hurdler Jordan Moore from the Peach State), some distance runners seeking redemption after fall disappointments, and two Midwestern 12-6 girls pole vaulters.

But Williams is unquestionably the meet’s top entry, with a good chance to win three events for the second straight year. In fact, she deserves her own event-by-event breakdown:

  • High Jump – Williams will be looking to defend her 2011 title here (5-8.5) and improve on her current US#1 of 5-10.75. Her outdoor PR is 6-0, which makes her the nation’s top returnee entering that campaign.

  • Long Jump – Last winter, Williams bounded out to 19-8.75 in winning here, a mark that held up for US#2 and is still her indoor/outdoor career best. Currently, she is US#9 with a 19-6 best for 2012.

  • 60H – Williams also won this event last year at 8.61, but eventually ran US#4 8.44. She’s currently at US#4 8.56, but also has run US#1 7.90 for 55H. She’s also entered in the 200, not a top event for her but one she competes in during her heptathlons.

Williams’ biography – including her heptathlon and pentathlon performances, national titles, and medal-winning efforts in meets as prestigious as the World Youth Champs last summer (she was 2nd in the 100H) – could fill up this entire preview. But suffice it to say right now she’s focused on getting ready for nationals in her specialties. At New Balance Indoor last March, she won the pentathlon (which included a 5-11.25 HJ) and was 3rd in the 60H. She’ll be the heavy favorite in the high jump, but she could be pushed by Dominion Christian (Marietta, Ga.) senior Shannen-Rose Forde (19-2 PR) and Eastmoor Academy (Columbus, Ohio) frosh Cheyanne Carter (18-11.25 PR) in the long jump.

More top entries and events:

  • Brandon Kidder – Let’s be honest, if you asked a lot of national track pundits about Brandon Kidder, the response would be “Who?” But as a junior last spring, he took his PR down from 4:12.37 in the 1600, to 4:09.32 at state, then stunned with his 4:06.73 for an upset victory at the Midwest Distance Gala. He then ran the 800 at New Balance Outdoor Nationals, but in taking 13th in the 800 in 1:52.02, has still stayed off the radar for many. Kidder has also run 1:51.09 for 800 outdoors. He’s entered (and favored) in both the mile and 800 here. This mile here last winter, in fact, was a breakout for him as he took 2nd in a then-PR 4:15.72. The most likely to push Kidder in the 800 is Martin Luther King (Decatur, Ga.) senior Thomas Miller (Sprint Athletics) with a 1:53.20 PR and Lakota West (West Chester, Ohio) senior Nathan Haynes with a 1:54.81 best. In the mile, the top challengers could be Powell (Powell, Tenn.) senior Andrew Ogle (Knoxville TC) at 4:16.23 (1600) and Holy Cross (Louisville, Ky.) junior Jacob Thomson (Cross Elite) at 4:17.38.

  • Jada Martin – In a year where the spots at the top of the national dash lists are up for grabs (no overwhelming returning leaders), the Martin Luther King (Decatur, Ga.) junior is one who could emerge as the calendar rolls into indoor national and the overall outdoor seasons. She has already blasted a US#2 24.15 200 at the KTC Indoor Classic, with three times under 24.40, and has strong 55 and 60 times as well.

  • Felicia Brown – Also part of this loaded Martin Luther King squad is Brown, who is currently US#3 with a 55.47 at LSU’s unbanked track, and had a US#9 53.67 outdoor best in winning the AAU JOs last summer. She was 2nd here in both the 200 and 400 last year and is also running the 200 again in 2012.

  • Boys faves from Peach State, too – Union Grove (McDonogh, Ga.) senior Jordan Moore went up to Illinois, of all places, to blast a then-US#1 7.28 60H way back before Christmas. The US#1 now stands at 7.17, so Saturday will be a good chance to try and regain the top spot. And with a 47.15 career best (outdoors, last spring), Kell (Marietta, Ga.) senior Michael Newton (The Heat TC) is the solid favorite in the 400. He’s “only” US#15 right now at 48.95, but this is his first outing on a fast track.

  • Girls PV battle – Two of the country’s fast-rising 13-foot aspirants will be battling here, as Pandora-Gilboa (Pandora, Ohio) senior Ellie Braidic and Center Grove (Greenwood, Ind.) senior Sydney Clute will do battle. They’ve both cleared 12-6 during their careers. Three others are at 11-6 or better, including Lawrence Central (Indianapolis, Ind.) senior Kimyanna Rudolph at 12-1.

  • Big shots – Five boys putters are seeded at 53 feet or better, led by Carmel (Carmel, Ind.) senior Langston Newton at US#7 59-10. Withrow (Cincinnati, Ohio) senior D’Monami Gardner was her state’s D1 champ last year at 46-8.75 and then took 7th at NBON. She has a 43-11 best so far this winter in limited action.

  • Can she do it again? – One of the surprise highlights of the 2011 Kentucky Invite was the breakthrough 2:08.84 800 by then-McAuley (Cincinnati, Ohio) junior Danielle Pfiefer, which held up as US#5 for the season. The mark has proven to be a tough one to crack and Saturday, she’ll see if she can improve on it as her 2012 season gears up. No one else in the field is seeded within five seconds.

  • Intriguing deuce – Three stars who had somewhat disappointing conclusions to their cross-country seasons could make for a very fast boys 2-mile. Reynoldsburg (Reynoldsburg, Ohio) senior Tsehaye Hiluf was winning everything in Ohio the first half of last fall, but then after taking D1 state, he was just 20th at NXN Midwest. Oakland (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) junior Brock Baker was unbeaten in Tennessee and had a 2nd at the prestigious Trinity-Valkyre Invite, but then fell in his state meet and was 24th in Foot Locker South. And Festus (Festus, Mo.) senior Drew White won the 3A Missouri state meet, but then was 17th at NXN Midwest and 130th at Foot Locker Midwest. Who might win here and get 2012 off to a great start? Home-state star Thomson, also mentioned in the mile, is listed as doubling here, too.

  • Best of the rest: C.J. Smith is the defending champ and heavy HJ favorite with a 6-10.5 best from last winter… Chaminade (Ohio) senior Cierra Brown could threaten 40 feet in the TJ … a trio of boys long jumpers are in the 23-foot range, including Canal Winchester (Winchester, Ohio) senior Antonio Whitfield, Lebanon (Lebanon, Tenn.) senior Shaq Cragwell and Lawrence Central (Indianapolis, Ind.) senior Jeron Brown, which could make it one of the most competitive events of the day … Bryan Station (Lexington, Ky.) senior Tre Duncan will be a local favorite, with a 46-foot triple jump best … the girls mile has three sub-5:00 seeds, topped by Center Grove (Greenville, Ind.) junior Tori Schoettmer (Trojan TC) with a 4:55.31 PR … The top 4x400 relay seeds are the Sprint Athletics (Ga.) girls at 3:50.14 and the Dunbar (Dayton, Ohio) boys at 3:15.91. In the 4x800, it’s Mason (Mason, Ohio) girls at 9:13.06 and Cincinnati St. Xavier (Cincinnati, Ohio) with 7:53.49.





February 18th, 2012

TIME EVENT # of sections / heats

10:30 AM High Jump Women (4'8" start) 24 athletes

10:30 AM High Jump Men (5'8" start) 24 athletes

10:30 AM

Long Jump Men / Women follow 20 athletes (2 flights)

Triple Jump Men / Women follow 20 athletes (2 flights)

(follows LJ)

10:30 AM

Pole Vault Women / Men follow 20 athletes

(8'0" start / 11'0" start)

12:30 PM Shot Put Women / Men follow 24 athletes (2 flights)

12:40 PM

60m hurdles (Trials) Men 36 athletes / 4 heats

60m hurdles (Trials) Women 36 athletes / 4 heats

60m dash (Trials) Men 45 athletes / 5 heats

60m dash (Trials) Women 45 athletes / 5 heats

1:30 PM ONE MILE Women 30 athletes / 2 sections

1:45 PM ONE MILE Men 30 athletes / 2 sections

2:05 PM 60m hurdles (Final) Women 9 athletes advance /1 section

2:10 PM 60m hurdles (Final) Men 9 athletes advance / 1 section

2:15 PM 60m dash (Final) Women 9 athletes advance / 1 section

2:18 PM 60m dash (Final) Men 9 athletes advance / 1 section

2:23 PM 400 meters Women 36 athletes / 6 sections

2:40 PM 400 meters Men 36 athletes / 6 sections

3:00 PM 800 meters Women 30 athletes / 3 sections

3:12 PM 800 meters Men 30 athletes / 3 sections

3:25 PM 200 meters Women 36 athletes / 6 sections

3:37 PM 200 meters Men 36 athletes / 6 sections

3:56 PM TWO MILESWomen 25 athletes / 1 section

4:14 PM TWO MILES Men 25 athletes / 1 section

4:32 PM 4 x 400m relay Women 18 Teams / 3 sections

4:50 PM 4 x 400m relay Men 18 Teams / 3 sections

5:07 PM 4 x 800m relay Women 15 Teams / 1 section

5:22 PM 4 x 800m relay Men 15 Teams / 1 section