Pioneer men picked sixth in SAC preseason outdoor poll

Pioneer men picked sixth in SAC preseason outdoor poll

ROCK HILL, S.C. --- The Tusculum University men's outdoor track & field team has been picked to finish sixth at the South Atlantic Conference Championships, according to the preseason coaches poll released Monday.

The Pioneers were sixth in the SAC Indoor Track & Field Championships last month, and placed 10th in the inaugural SAC Outdoor Championship meet last spring.

Sophomore sprinter Widchard Guervil, sophomore distance runner Jackson Beason and junior high jumper Guillaume Devries were identified as Athletes to Watch for the Pioneers this spring.

Guervil was an All-American in the 100 meters last season with a time of 10.61 seconds at nationals, after being the top qualifier at the SAC Championship with a time of 10.30 seconds. The Fort Myers, Florida native also qualified for nationals in the 200 meters after being clocked at 20.97 seconds at the Tennessee Challenge, finishing 14th overall at the NCAA Championship.

Beason placed 11th in the 1500 meters and 13th in the steeplechase at the SAC Championship last spring, and has a best time in the 5000 meters of 16:06.25 which placed him sixth in the event at the Gamecock Invitational. The Maryville, Tennessee product was 15th at the SAC Cross Country Championship and 56th at the NCAA Southeast Region meet last fall.

Devries, who will be competing outdoors for the first time at Tusculum, finished second to eventual NCAA Division II national champion Isaiah Kyle of Wingate in the high jump at the SAC Indoor Championship last month, clearing 2.10 meters (6 feet, 10 3/4 inches) for the third time in six meets. Devries, a native of Valenciennes, France, also had a best mark in the long jump of 6.93 meters (22 feet, 9 inches) at the ETSU Buccaneer Invitational on Feb. 1, good for third place.

Queens received 10 first-place votes and 110 points and is the favorite in the poll, followed by Lenoir-Rhyne with the other first-place vote and 97 points. Wingate (92 points) was third, followed by Carson-Newman (87), Catawba (64) and Tusculum (62). Coker is picked seventh (59 points), with Lincoln Memorial (38) and Newberry (36) in eighth and ninth, respectively. Mars Hill and Anderson were tied for 10th place with 35 points apiece.

The SAC Outdoor Track & Field Championship will be held April 18-20 at the Irwin Belk Track on the campus of Lenoir-Rhyne in Hickory, North Carolina.