APSU Sports Information
Memphis, TN – Returning to their hometown, Austin Peay State University runners Breigh Jones and Jessica Gray may have felt the pressure to perform at Saturday’s Memphis Tiger Invitational, held at the Billy J. Murphy Track Complex, but they sure didn’t show it.Jones swept the 200 and 400m dashes and Gray nabbed a victory in the 800m, leading the Lady Govs on a day that saw Austin Peay’s outstanding track squad claim seven victories.
“Very, very solid meet,” said head coach Doug Molnar. “We did well in our ‘wheelhouse’ events and had a bunch of personal-bests in multiple events from multiple people.”
Jones, who hails from Central High School, dominated in her specialty, winning the 400m with a 54.38 run and came oh-so-close to breaking the school-record in the 200m. Her 24.05 mark was one-hundredth of a second away from breaking Maikea Davis‘ 2014 mark and gave her the win in that event as well by more than three-tenths of a second.
After going to Austin Peay from Arlington High School by way of Bethel, Gray dominated with a 2:10.86 run in the 800m, taking the win by greater than three seconds ahead of Jacksonville State’s Whitley Towns. Gray, Jones and another Memphian, sophomore Tamira Wilson, were joined by Molly Jordan to win the 4x400m relay with a 3:47.19 clip, best by an Austin Peay team in 2015.
Jones, junior LaMontra Robinson (yet another Memphian, from Central), senior Erika Adams and sophomore Kymmalett Ross combined for a 46.58 4x100m run for the victory. Adams was third as an individual in the 100m dash thanks to her 12.13 run.
Austin Peay swept the hurdles events, with junior Natalie Olberding posting a 1:02.74 to take the 400m and freshman Sonja White hit a personal-best with a 14.22 mark to finish ahead of teammate Amia Butler (14.35). White also added a third-place finish in the high jump (1.60m).
It wasn’t all about the track, as sophomore Kaylnn Pitts continued her quest for a 13-meter triple jump. The Woonsocket, RI, native came close on Saturday, hitting 12.92m to break the school record for the third time in as many meets, which would be a top-10 mark regionally based on marks entering Saturday’s competition. She finished second to Memphis’ Chardae Greenlee, who currently ranks fifth in the NCAA East Region.
Sophomore Autumn Schmelzer (third, 41.67m in the hammer throw) and Lydia Saina (personal-best 10:26.68, third in the 3000m) also posted nice showings for Austin Peay in the Bluff City.
“Really good to see us coming together at the right time and have everybody pitching in,” Doug Molnar said. “Hopefully we can get a little more healthy in the next couple of weeks heading into conference. I’m really excited about the effort the ladies put in today.”
Austin Peay will be off next weekend to rest up for the 2015 Ohio Valley Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships, May 15th-16th, at Governors Stadium.