WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. --- Freshman Widchard Guervil became Tusculum's first South Atlantic Conference track & field champion as he beat a field of some of the top Division II runners in the country to win the men's 60-meter dash at the SAC Indoor Track & Field Championships, held Monday at the JDL Fast Track.
Guervil's performance, combined with a third-place run in the 200 meters, enabled the first-year Pioneer program to finish in sixth place in the men's team standings in the inaugural SAC Championship meet. Tusculum had six individual and two relay performances earn points in the meet, which featured all 11 members of the conference.
Nicole McMillen turned in a pair of top-five finishes in distance events for the Pioneer women, who finished in ninth place and had three individual and two relay performances that scored in the meet.
Guervil, who came into the meet seeded third in the 60 meters with a season-best time of 6.81 seconds, qualified for the finals by easily winning his heat with a time of 6.84 seconds. In the finals, Guervil turned in the best time of the season by any SAC runner as he was clocked in 6.77 seconds to capture the gold, just ahead of Devon Moore of Carson-Newman (6.78 seconds), P.J. Lotharp of Lenoir-Rhyne (6.79 seconds) and Kieran Showler-Davis of Carson-Newman (6.79 seconds), each of whom had entered the SAC Championship on the NCAA provisional qualifying list.
Guervil's finish bumped his NCAA Division II Championship provisional qualifying time into 11th place on the latest performance list, and ranks him second among all runners from the Southeast Region. Guervil has finished at 6.95 seconds or better in each of the ten 60-meter races he has run this season, with six of the 10 surpassing the NCAA provisional qualifying time of 6.88 seconds in the event.
Guervil also competed in the 200 meters for the Pioneers and earned a third-place finish with a time of 22.21 seconds. Teammate Althiery Leontes also registered a season-best time and grabbed points for the Pioneers by finishing seventh in 22.65 seconds.
Yannick Rosalie captured third place in the triple jump by leaping 13.80 meters (45 feet, 3 1/2 inches) on his second of three jumps in his flight. In the long jump, Jay Boyd finished in fourth place after advancing to the finals with a jump of 6.80 meters (22 feet, 3 3/4 inches) on his third and final attempt in his flight. Boyd tied for eighth place in the high jump after clearing 1.70 meters (5 feet, 7 inches).
In relays, the 4x400-meter team of Khalil Green, Malik Tann, Xavier Hayes and Leontes finished in seventh place at 3:34.75, while the distance medley relay quartet of Jackson Beason, J'Quen Johnson, Will Cronin and Tann took eighth place in 11:06.88.
Other top performances came from Jacob Acklin in the 60 meters, who finished 12th with a season-best time of 7.08 seconds. In the 400 meters, Green was 10th overall in 52:35. seconds, while Johnson took 15th in the 800 (2:04.93) and Beason placed 15th in the 5000 in a time of 16:21.82.
In field events, Evan Grooms finished 17th in the weight throw and established a season best with a heave of 11.58 meters (38 feet). Travis Johnson tied for 14th in the shot put at 12.38 meters (40 feet, 7 1/2 inches) and Christian Sisto tied for 16th at 12.33 meters (40 feet, 5 1/2 inches).
Queens won the team championship with 148 points, followed by Wingate (119.83 points), Lenoir-Rhyne (102.83), Carson-Newman (77) and Coker (58) in the top five. Tusculum (32.33) was sixth, followed by Anderson (25), Mars Hill (21), Lincoln Memorial (16), Catawba (14) and Newberry (9) in the field.
McMillen began her day by running a leg of the Pioneer distance medley relay team that finished in seventh place with a season-best time of 13:27.99. McMillen then ran the 5000 meters and finished in fourth place with a time of 18:20.47, more than 35 seconds faster than her season best. After a break for hurdles and sprint preliminaries, McMillen returned to the track and placed third in the mile run with a time of 5:15.72 that broke her season best by 15 seconds.
Joining McMillen on the DMR were Alissa Furches, Katie MacDonald and Emily Stoklosa, while the 4x400 team of Autumn Blackwood, Bailey Pruiett, I'Keriah Day and Raygene Minus took eighth place with a time of 4:22.33.
Also earning a point for the Pioneers was Dynah Dunn in the shot put, as her second throw of the final round of 10.82 meters (35 feet, 6 inches) moved her from ninth to eighth place in the final standings. Dunn also finished 17th in the weight throw at 9.91 meters (32 feet, 6 1/4 inches) and Day placed 17th in the long jump at 4.74 meters (15 feet, 6 3/4 inches).
On the track, Pruiett was 13th overall in the 400 meters at 1:02.74, with Minus taking 17th place in 1:04.48. MacDonald finished 13th in the 800 meters with a time of 2:33.06 that was less than half a second behind her season best. Furches also ran the mile with McMillen and also nearly had a season-best time, placing 11th overall in 5:45.99.
- TC -
South Atlantic Conference Indoor Track & Field Championship
at JDL Fast Track, Winston-Salem, N.C.
60 dash: 1. Widchard Guervil, 6.77; 12. Jacob Acklin, 7.08
200: 3. Widchard Guervil, 22.21; 7. Althiery Leontes, 22.65; 18. Kedar Ashford, 23.19;
400: 10. Khalil Green, 52.35; 23. Xavier Hayes, 55.27; 25. Rodnell Cruell, 55.83
800: 15. J'Quen Johnson, 2:04.93; 17. Malik Tann, 2:05.23; 24. Isaac Hybarger, 2:13.09
5000: 15. Jackson Beason, 16:21.82; 17. Will Cronin, 16:35.93
4x400 relay: 7. Tusculum (Khalil Green, Malik Tann, Xavier Hayes, Althiery Leontes), 3:34.75
Distance medley relay: 8. Tusculum (Jackson Beason, J'Quen Johnson, Will Cronin, Malik Tann), 11:06.88
Long jump: 4. Jay Boyd, 6.80m (22-3 3/4); 16. Yannick Rosalie, 6.05m (19-10 1/4); 24. Kedar Ashford, 5.00m (16-5)
Triple jump: 3. Yannick Rosalie, 13.80m (45-3 1/2)
High jump: t8. Jay Boyd, 1.70m (5-7)
Shot put: t14. Travis Johnson, 12.38m (40-7 1/2); t16. Christian Sisto, 12.33m (40-5 1/2); 27. Zach Lane, 10.94m (35-10 3/4)
Weight throw: 17. Evan Grooms, 11.58m (38-0)
60 dash: 20. Autumn Blackwood, 8.50
200: 21. I'Keriah Day, 27.73
400: 13. Bailey Pruiett, 1:02.74; 17. Raygene Minus, 1:04.48; 23. Drew Wildman, 1:06.89
800: 13. Katie MacDonald, 2:33.06
Mile: 3. Nicole McMillen, 5:15.72; 11. Alissa Furches, 5:45.99
5000: 4. Nicole McMillen, 18:20.47
4x400 relay: 8. Tusculum (Autumn Blackwood, Bailey Pruiett, I'Keriah Day, Raygene Minus), 4:22.33
Distance medley relay: 7. Tusculum (Alissa Furches, Nicole McMillen, Katie MacDonald, Emily Stoklosa), 13:27.99
Men: 1. Queens, 148; 2. Wingate, 119.83; 3. Lenoir-Rhyne, 102.83; 4. Carson-Newman, 77; 5. Coker, 58; 6. TUSCULUM, 32.33; 7. Anderson, 25; 8. Mars Hill, 21; 9. Lincoln Memorial, 16; 10. Catawba, 14; 11. Newberry, 9.
Women: 1. Queens, 189; 2. Wingate, 134; 3. Lenoir-Rhyne, 98.5; 4. Coker, 46.5; 5. Anderson, 46; 6. Carson-Newman, 40; 7. Lincoln Memorial, 21; 8. Mars Hill, 18; 9. TUSCULUM, 15; 10. Catawba, 10; 11. Newberry, 6.