JONESBORO, Ark. – WKU men have won back-to-back indoor track & field titles for the first time in program history. The 139 points scored by the Toppers were the second most point scored since 2006. The 2012 team posted 160.5.
WKU was led David Mokone who scored 28 points for the Toppers. Mokone, a junior, won the men's mile and the 800 meters on Monday and finished second in the 3,000 meters on Sunday. He was named the men's Most Outstanding Track Performer.
Hilltoppers head coach Erik Jenkins was honored as the men's Coach of the Year.
On the women's side, Arkansas State took home its first women's indoor track & field title since 1998. The Red Wolves posted a team score of 122.5 and was paced by Sharika Nelvis who won four individual events over the two-day meet. Nelvis was honored as
the women's Most Outstanding Track Performer as the junior earned 40.5 points for the Red Wolves.
Nelvis won the long jump on Sunday and then picked up victories in the 55 meter dash, the 55-meter hurdles and the 200 meter dash. She picked up an additional 0.5 points in the women's 4x400 meter relay.
ASU's head coach Jim Patchell was named the women's Coach of the Year after guiding the championship host Red Wolves to the team title.
North Texas finished as the runner-up in both team races. Christina Taylor of North Texas was named the women's Most Outstanding Freshman while FIU's Marcus Ghent was named the men's Most Outstanding Freshman.
The Middle Tennessee duo of Cordairo Golden and Ann Dudley were named the men's and women's Most Outstanding Field Performers, respectively.
Monday's action got underway with the women's triple jump.
WKU's Sharika Smith improved upon her season best in the triple jump by leaping 12.52m (41'1") en route to the triple title. On Sunday, Smith finished second in the long jump. Briana Aiken of South Alabama was second overall after taking third-place honors
in the long jump. France Makabu, the season's leader in the triple jump, took home third to grab six points for Middle Tennessee.
Arkansas State's Julia Agawu won the women's weight throw with a toss of 19.14m (62'9.5") after finishing third in the event last year. Latifah Johnson of South Alabama was second with a throw of 18.99m (62'3.75"). FIU sophomore, Raqurra Ishmar, was third
in the event earning her second top three finish of the weekend as she also finished third in the shot put.
ASU’s Ethan Turpen took home the men's heptathlon title with 5,287 points. Turpen was second after the first day of events. The senior was the runner-up in 2012. Turpen won the 1,000 meters, tied for fourth in the pole vault and was second in the 55 meter
On day one, Turpen took home top honors in the high jump, third in the shot put and long jump and 55 meter dash. Turpen's teammate, William Oliver, finished second with last year's champion and day one leader, Sander Maes of Louisiana-Lafayette, finishing
WKU's Mokone successfully defended his mile title running 4:14.17, just four seconds off of his record setting pace a year ago. Troy Taylor, a freshman from NT, finished second while Taylor's teammate, Matt Russ, the champion in the men's 3,000 meters, finished
The women's mile saw NT’s Josephine Adams, the 2012 mile runner-up, cross the finish line first with a time of 5:01.80. This was Adams' second conference title as she won the women's 3,000 meters on Sunday. Salome Lecoq of USA was second and Christina Taylor,
Adams’ teammate, third.
WKU's Elvyonn Bailey took first-place honors in the men's 400 meter dash. The junior raced to a winning time of 47.44. Joseph Meyer of ASU was second (47.53) and Clinton Collins of NT was third (47.57).
NT's Ashley Harrison claimed the women's 400 meter dash with a time of 55.26. Lashae White of FIU and Lakeisha Kelley, also of FIU, finished second and third, respectively. The teammates were separated by just two hundredths-of-a-second at the finish line.
ASU's Justin Whitfield claimed the men's 55 meter dash title, besting ULL's Justin Jones and MT's Noah Akwu. Whitfield's time of 6.35 was a new season best for the junior.
On the women's side, ASU's Nelvis claimed her second win of the meet with a time 6.87 in the 55 meter dash. The junior won this event a year ago. FIU's T'Keyah Dumoy was second and ULL's Morgan Breaux was third.
The next event on the track saw FIU's Desmond McGill take top honors in the 55-meter hurdles. McGill had the fastest qualifying time in the prelims. He finished 11th in the event at last year's meet. ASU's Lucas Bateman and WKU's Cyrus Johnson finished second
and third, respectively.
Less than an hour after the women's 55-meter dash, the women's 55-meter hurdles saw ASU's Nelvis claim her third event title. Nelvis broke a decades old facility record with a time of 7.68. NT's Chastity Stewart was second with a time of 7.94 and Christal
Wilson of MT was third.
WKU's Joseph Chebet won the men's 5,000 meters with ULM's Daniel Mutai finishing second and Shadrack Matelong of Middle Tennessee in third. ASU's Kristina Aubert won the women's 5,000 meters, taking home her first event title of the meet.
Aubert finished second in the 3,000 meters and was part of the third-place DMR on Sunday.
Lucy Kapkiai of MT was second and Lindsey Hinken of WKU was third.
WKU's Mokone claimed his second event title of the day in the men's 800 meter run. Mokone earlier won the mile and was the runner-up in the 3,000 meters on Sunday. MT freshman Eliud Rutto was second behind Mokone and the Mean Green's Austin Yaeger was third.
NT's Adams won her third event of the meet in the women's 800 meters. Adams posted a time of 2:10.57, just one second off of a new SBC Championship record. Florida Atlantic's Valerie Dixon was second and FIU's Samia Adan came in third.
MT's Akwu won the men's 200 meter dash in 21.40 with ASU's Meyer in second and NT's Collins in third.
ASU's Nelvis won her fourth event title in the women's 200 meter dash, setting a new facility record in the process. Nelvis' time was 23.74 breaking the old facility record of 23.89. FIU's Dumoy and Kelley finished second and third.
NT's Chelsea Hermes took first-place honors in the pentathlon as the senior scored 3,702 points. FAU freshman Ronja Siekmann was second and MT's Dudley, the high jump champion, was third.
The final event of the meet, the 4x400 meter relays, was won by Middle Tennessee on the men's side and FIU on the women's side.
2013 Sun Belt Indoor Track & Field Championships
Arkansas State Convocation Center | Jonesboro, Ark.
WOMEN’S TEAM SCORES
1- Arkansas State - 122.5
2- North Texas - 117.5
3- FIU - 103
4- Middle Tennessee - 87.5
5- WKU - 73
6- South Alabama - 62.5
7- Georgia State - 31
7- Louisiana-Lafayette - 31
9- Florida Atlantic - 25
10- Troy - 10
MEN’S TEAM SCORES
1- WKU - 139
2- North Texas - 126
3- Arkansas State - 104
4- Middle Tennessee - 77
5- Louisiana-Lafayette - 69
6- South Alabama - 54
7- Louisiana-Monroe - 35
8- FIU - 34
9- UALR - 24
10- Georgia State - 1
MEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING TRACK PERFORMER
David Mokone, WKU
MEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING FIELD PERFORMER
Cordairo Golden, Middle Tennessee
MEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING FRESHMAN
Marcus Ghent, FIU
MEN’S TOP MEET SCORER
David Mokone, WKU (28 pts)
MEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR
Erik Jenkins, WKU
WOMEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING TRACK PERFORMER
Sharika Nelvis, Arkansas State
WOMEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING FIELD PERFORMER
Ann Dudley, Middle Tennessee
WOMEN’S MOST OUTSTANDING FRESHMAN
Christina Taylor, North Texas
WOMEN’S TOP MEET SCORER
Sharika Nelvis, Arkansas State (40.5 pts)
WOMEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR
Jim Patchell, Arkansas State