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81 MEAC Students Athletes Qualify For NCAA Regional Championships
GREENSBORO, NC.— The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference will have 81 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championship qualifiers competing in the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field East Regional Championships held May 28-29 at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Fla. MEAC qualifiers will be competing for spots in the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Nationals held June 9-12 in Austin, Texas. North Carolina A&T’s men and women track programs lead the MEAC with 16 total qualifiers. Florida A&M, the men’s 2004 MEAC Outdoor Track & Field Co-Champions, in second with 13 qualifiers (all earned by the men’s track program), while Hampton University closes out the top three with 12 total student-athlete qualifiers.
The Aggies’ Justin Byron earned three qualifying performances including the 400 meter dash (46.69), the 4×100 (40.24) and the 4×400 (3:10.25). Joining Byron on both relay teams are sophomore Marcus Satchell and freshman Antonio Lee. The Aggies Calvin Redden is a member of the 4×100 team, while junior Kenny Perry is a member of the 4×400 team. Sophomore Brandon Via earned eligibility in both the long jump (7.38m) and the triple jump with a 15.77m performance on March 27 at the Raleigh Relays.
The Lady Aggies lead all MEAC women’s track programs with eight (8) qualifiers including junior Tiffany Green, the sole women’s MEAC qualifier for both the 100 meter (11.74) and 200 meter dash (23.59). Green also qualified for the 4×100 meter relay (45.64) at the Raleigh Relays on March 27. Joining Green on the relay team is senior Karron Thomas, junior Tawana Norman, and sophomore Phykesha Blackmon.
Other qualifiers for the Lady Aggies are sophomore Courtney Clark who qualified for the 400 meter hurdles (59.87) at the Sea Rays Relays in Knoxville, TN on April 10, and senior Carl-Ann McBean who qualified for the women’s 400 meter dash with a time of 54.46 at the 2004 MEAC Outdoor Championship on April 30.
Kevin Hicks, the 2004 MEAC Indoor and Outdoor Outstanding Performer, leads the Rattlers with qualifying times in the 800 meter dash (1:49.41) and the 1500 meter run (3:55.33), both set on May 1 at the 2004 MEAC Outdoor Championships. Hicks also leads the Rattlers in the 4×400 meter relay, as they qualified at the Gator Invite April 10 with a time of 3:09.02. Joining Hicks on the relay team are juniors James Amune, Rod Peterson, and senior Eric Ramsey.
Freshman Terry Thornton and Andrew Peresta of Hampton lead the way for the 2004 MEAC Outdoor Co-Champions, both qualifying for two events each. In the 400 meter hurdles Thornton (51.74) and Peresta (51.56) earned qualifying times at the 2004 MEAC Outdoor Championships. Thornton also qualified in the 110 meter hurdles with a time of 14.29, while Peresta earned another qualifying time as he led the Pirates 4×400 meter relay (3:10.22) at the 2004 MEAC Outdoor Championships.
Junior All-American Kellie Wells of Hampton, a 2004 NCAA Indoor Championship qualifier with an 8.34 60-meter hurdle performance, earned a 100 meter hurdle qualifying time of 13.54 (7th fastest east regional time) on April 3 at the Duke Invitational. Teammate Maisha Pinkard earned a qualifying time in the 400 meter dash (52.93) helping the Lady Pirates to their third consecutive MEAC Outdoor Championship with the sixth fastest east regional time thus far, 17th nationally.