NEW ORLEANS – Region honors announced by United States Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association included awards in the South Central Region for a trio of Aggies and Texas A&M assistant coach Vince Anderson.
Kamaria Brown was named Women’s Track Athlete of the Year, Deon Lendore received Men’s Track Athlete of the Year and Brea Garrett earned Women’s Field Event Athlete of the Year. Anderson was recognized as South Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year.
All three Aggies receiving the region honors are currently collegiate leaders in their respective events heading into the NCAA Indoor Championships held this weekend in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Brown is a world leader in the 200 meters with a time of 22.50 seconds and the collegiate leader in the 400 with a 50.94. She won both events at the SEC Indoor Championships, becoming the first sprinter to achieve that feat in the same season. At the NCAA Championships Brown will contest the 200 meters and be part of the A&M 4x400 relay.
Lendore is the current world leader in the 400 meters with a 45.03 and anchored the Aggies 4x400 to a collegiate record of 3:03.20 as he claimed his fifth set of conference titles in each event recently at the SEC Indoor meet.
Garrett improved her career best in the weight throw by six feet in producing the collegiate leading mark of 74-4.25 (22.66) this indoor season. She recently placed second at the SEC Championships for the second consecutive year behind the defending champion.
Aggie women sprinters in Coach Anderson’s group accounted for 54 points at the SEC Championships and advanced a nation-leading eight entries into the NCAA Championships in the sprint/hurdle events. The group competing at the NCAA Indoors includes three entries in the 60 and 200 meters, two entries in the 400 as well as the 4x400 relay.
In addition to the unique double achieved by Brown in winning the SEC 200 and 400 meters, Shamier Little has the top mark by a freshman in the 400 with a 51.86 that earned her third place in the SEC meet.
IAAF WORLD INDOORS
Gerald Phiri lowered the national record for Zambia twice in the 60 meters on the way to placing fifth in the World Indoor Championships held in Sopot, Poland this past weekend.
Phiri clocked 6.52 in the final, just 0.03 from the winning time of 6.49 and matching the time for third and fourth place. In the first round Phiri won his heat in 6.59 and then posted a national record of 6.57 as runner-up in the semi-final heat.
Meanwhile, Ricky Babineaux was part of the gold-medal effort for the United States in the 4x400 relay when he ran the second leg during the prelims. The U.S. clocked 3:04.36 to post the top qualifying time during the prelims, defeating Jamaica (3:06.12) and Poland (3:06.50) in the first heat.
During the finals a world record of 3:02.13 was established by the American foursome of Kyle Clemons, David Verburg, Kind Butler and Calvin Smith as they defeated Great Britain (3:03.49), Jamaica (3:03.69) and Poland (3:04.39).
While breaking the previous world record of 3:02.83 set by the United States in 1999, the time is inferior to the American record of 3:01.96 set in 2006 that was not ratified as a world record.
Aggies also competing in the World Indoor Championships also included Tabarie Henry (400m), Tyron Stewart (long jump) and Fabrice Lapierre (long jump).
Stewart finished ninth in long jump qualifying with a mark of 26-3 (8.00), which left him half an inch out of making the finals. Lapierre placed 14th with a mark of 25-5.5 (7.76). Henry placed third in an opening round heat of the 400 with a 46.87 and finished 16th overall.