April 19, 2014
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Senior sprinters Brycen Spratling and Carvin Nkanata completed their final collegiate conference championship in the way head coach Alonzo Webb always expected with two winning performances.
Spratling's time of 45.49 seconds earned him a gold medal and the fourth fastest time in the nation. It's important to note that Spratling also holds the third fastest time in the nation, 45.46, which he set last weekend at the Tennessee Relays.
Nkanata is two-for-two in his 200 meter appearances at the ACC Championships. On Saturday night, he became the 200 meter outdoor champion with a 20.47 effort. The senior sprinter now owns a Big East title and two ACC champion titles in the 200 meter.
The Panthers top-marks on Championship Saturday come as no surprise to Coach Webb, and in fact it's what he simply refers to as, "the Pitt way".
Well, `the Pitt way' is certainly something fans can get used to, and after what Webb would describe as a disappointing Friday, it quickly turned into a successful Saturday. In addition to Spratling and Nkanata's titles, the Panthers headed to the podium another five times to pick-up medals.
The Pitt men's 4x400 meter relay put on yet another show, but this time the Pitt team was made of Micah Murray, Carvin Nkanata, Charles Ross and anchored by Brycen Spratling in the final event of the championships. The 4x4 relay team took silver with a 3:05.94 effort. The Pitt men missed first overall by 5 one-hundredths of a second behind North Carolina.
Representing for the women, Haley Springman reset the school record in the discus with a throw of 50.80 meters. Springman surpassed her previous record by 0.71 meters, which she recorded just last weekend at the Tennessee Relays. Springman went on to finish second overall in the women's discus championship finals, finishing behind Florida State's Kellion Knibb.
Freshman thrower Ethan Shalaway made his presence known in his first ever championship meet with a third place finish in the men's javelin throw. Shalaway's final throw of 64.74 meters secured his spot on the podium where he was awarded the bronze medal for his outstanding efforts on Saturday.
The men's 4x100 meter relay, lead off by Josh Mindlin then Carvin Nkanata, Micah Murray and anchored by Brycen Spratling placed third. The Panthers finished in 40.73 behind champion Florida State (40.19) and runner-up Notre Dame (40.37).
Nkanata was next awarded the bronze medal for Pitt in the men's 100 meter finals. Nkanata raced his way into third-place, improving upon his preliminary time of 10.44 to 10.39.
The women's 4x100 meter relay team of Jordyn Smith, Taranisha Taylor, Khadeja Kearney and Jessica Tongue-Coates finished sixth overall in 46.25 seconds.
Other standout performances in the finals include Jessica Tongue-Coates' seventh place finish in the women's 100 meter dash with a time of 11.90 seconds. Dustin Fuller went on to take sixth in the 400 meter hurdles (53.22 seconds), adding on to the men's team score.
Also for the men, Andrew Wells threw for 52.87 meters (173'5") in the discus finals, which was good enough for sixth overall in the event.
In the jumps, Ashley Corum advanced her way into the finals where she placed eighth in the women's triple jump with a recorded distance of 12.23 meters (40'1.5").
The men finished seventh in the team standings with a total score of 58.00 points. The women's team scored 13 points and finished 13 overall in the ACC standings.
The Panthers return home on Sunday but will quickly be on the road again to the Penn Relays, which kicks off on Wednesday, April 23 and concludes Saturday, April 26. For the latest updates, follow @PittTFandXC on Twitter or `like us' on Facebook under Pitt Track and Field.
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