Southeast Captures Three OVC Track Awards
Feb. 22, 2006
Brentwood, Tenn. - Southeast Missouri took home three of the six 2006 Ohio Valley Conference indoor track and field postseason awards in voting by the league's head coaches. The Redhawks' Miles Smith repeated as Male Track Athlete of the Year while Whitney Thomas and Chris Williams received Female and Male Freshman of the Year honors, respectively.
The awards were announced Wednesday in advance of the 2006 O'Reilly OVC Indoor Track and Field Championships, which will be held February 24-25 at the Gentry Center in Nashville, Tenn. Tennessee State plays host to the two-day event, which gets underway Friday at 2:00 p.m.
Smith, who was named the 2005 Indoor Male Track Athlete of the Year, will be looking to repeat as the 400-meter champion when action gets underway this weekend. The junior sprinter from St. Louis, Mo., holds the top 200- and 400-meter times in the league this season with marks of 21.21 and 46.67, respectively, and has already provisionally qualified for the NCAA Championship in both events.
A World Championship gold medalist, Smith will run in four events at the OVC indoor including the 55, 200 and 400-meter dashes and will also run on the 4 X 400-meter relay team. Including preliminaries, Smith will have seven races this weekend.
Thomas, a freshman hurdler and sprinter, ranks among the league's best in several categories this season. The St. Louis, Mo., native holds the top spot in the 55-meter hurdles (8.20) and the 60-meter hurdles (8.74) while ranking 11th in the 200 meters (26.04).
A freshman sprinter, Williams holds the second-best time in the Conference in the 400 meters (48.67) while also ranking third in the 200 meters (21.82.) The O'Falllon, Mo., native is also a member of the Southeast Missouri 4x400-meter relay time that sits atop the OVC best list this season with a time of 3:10.89.
Williams will run in the same four events as Smith at the OVC championships.
The Southeast men are expected to battle Eastern Illinois for the OVC indoor title. Eastern won last season with Southeast second.
The Redhawks women's team will battle Samford, Eastern Illinois, Eastern Kentucky and Tennessee State for the women's crown. They are the defending champions.