Atlanta, GA - Kellion Knibb set a new Florida State school record in the discus Saturday at the Georgia Tech Invitational, highlighting a string of solid performances by the Seminoles.
The final day for establishing postseason qualifying marks proved quite productive for the Seminoles, who competed at both the Georgia Tech Invitational and the Virginia Challenge.
“Now we’re into postseason and are excited to see what our squad looks like going to Greensboro,” said FSU head coach Bob Braman, who will learn early next week exactly how many Seminoles will advance to the NCAA East Preliminary meet.
Knibb got things going early on, unleashing a career-best throw of 55.68 meters (182-8) on her fourth attempt of the competition in Atlanta. The freshman from Jamaica broke the 10-year school standard, set by Makiba Batten (55.22m/181-2) in 2003 and was nearly 25-feet clear of her nearest competitor with her winning throw.
Knibb will head into the East Preliminary at North Carolina A&T ranked No. 3 after posting the nation’s sixth-best throw of the season.
The Seminoles turned in several other season-best marks at the George C. Griffin Track complex. Senior Darrin Gibson secured his place at the NCAA East Preliminary meet with a season-best run of 1:49.03 in the 800, which was good for fourth place.
Freshman Hannah Acton helped her cause in the pole vault, placing second with a season-best clearance of 3.92 meters (12-10.25). In search for one of 48 qualifying spots in the first round of NCAA competition, Acton moved into a tie for 33rd.
One of the most encouraging performances of the weekend was turned in by the men’s 4x100 relay team of David Ambler, Dentarius Locke, Stefan Brits and James Harris. Running together for just the second time this season, the quartet moved the baton around the track in a season-best time of 39.32. Not only was is good enough for the victory, it moved the ‘Noles from 10th to fifth overall in NCAA Division I this season.
Locke and Harris also produced individual victories on Saturday, in the 100 (10.20) and high jump (2.14m/7-0.25), respectively. Jeff Pelage got back on track in the discus with a second-place finish in 54.50m (178-10).
The women’s 4x400 relay team of Sage Watson, Elizabeth Ichite, Sarah Chandler and Marsha Ariol finished second with their second-fastest time of the season (3:39.46).
“The group didn’t come here to try and qualify,” FSU associate head coach Ken Harnden said. “We came here continuing to work. I thought we had a pretty good day.”
In Charlottesville, the Seminole men and women’s distance runners took a similar approach in the face of stout competition. FSU runners came away with four new career-best performances and some solid work with the postseason serving as a point of emphasis.
Senior Amanda Winslow finished fourth in both the 800 (2:08.61) and 1500 (4:14.26) which were the best finishes by a Seminole. Three of her teammates – Linden Hall, Colleen Quigley and Kayleigh Tyerman – each came away with new personal-best marks.
Hall placed eighth in the 800 in 2:09.28, while Quigley was ninth in the 1500 in 4:15.05. Tyerman placed 16th in the 1500 but her 4:22.58 was also a personal-best.
On the men’s side, freshman Zak Seddon checked in with a new personal-best in the 1500, finishing in 3:45.47.
Graduate student Seth Proctor led a group of five Seminoles, each chasing a qualifying mark in the 10,000-meter run, with a sixth-place finish in a season-best 29:55.87.
Senior Jennifer Dunn put a proper cap on the evening for the Seminoles, winning the women’s 10,000 in 35:03.72.
“I thought the women’s distance team had a really good night, particularly Linden Hall,” Braman said. “Colleen Quigley, Kayleigh Tyerman, and of course, Amanda Winslow, all looked very good. Then in the last race of the night, senior Jennifer Dunn made a heckuva run at a qualifying mark in the 10,000. She certainly deserves to make it.”