Kendell Williams is in third place in the heptathlon and Garrett Scantling is in fifth in the decathlon with both multi-events winding down in Tokyo, Japan, at the Olympics in Olympic Stadium Wednesday.
Williams moved from fifth to third on the second session of events, has 5,642 points and is a single point ahead of the fourth-place competitor with only the 800-meter run to go (8:30 a.m. ET Thursday). Scantling continued to hold the top American spot in fifth (7,026) and has a pair of events (javelin, 1500m) to go starting at 6:15 a.m. Thursday.
This was the sixth of 10 days of track and field events (Athletics) as the Games continue.
In addition, Shaunae Miller-Uibo, who was competing alongside her husband Maicel Uibo in the facility, stormed out of the blocks in the 400m semifinal to win her heat in 49.60. Fourth place overall in the round, Miller-Uibo will now line up in the final on Friday at 8:35 a.m.
A native of Nassau, Bahamas, Miller-Uibo is the defending Olympic champion in the 400m after her lunge for the line in Rio. She ran a 50.88 to win the 2013 NCAA indoor 400m title for the Lady Bulldogs and remains No. 12 on the all-time collegiate performer list. Miller-Uibo is second on both the school’s all-time indoor list (50.88) and outdoor list (50.70). This marks her third Olympics.
Williams began her heptathlon shot put with her best mark of the day at 12.41m (40 feet, 8 ¾ inches), which put her in 12th through three of seven events. In what wrapped up her day one of events, Williams edged up three spots into ninth after registering a 24.00 in the 200m. She posted the second-best long jump of the competition at 1.91m (21-6.75) in the next event and surged into fifth place overall. Williams made her significant move in the javelin, where she split her first and third marks with a personal-best effort of 48.78m (160-0). This situated her into bronze medal position by a single point with the 800m to go.
A native of Marietta, Ga., Williams was a seven-time NCAA champion for the Lady Bulldogs between 2014-17, including becoming the first woman in collegiate history to win four NCAA titles in the single event (pentathlon). The former collegiate record holder was named the USTFCCCA National Athlete of the Year three times and still owns six of the 10 best collegiate pentathlon scores in history. The 2017 SEC Female Athlete of the Year and Honda Award winner is at her second Olympics.
Scantling slipped to eighth following the decathlon high jump when he reached 1.99m (6-6.25). In the 400m, he posted his first personal record of the meet with a 48.25 to surge into sixth following the first five events. Scantling returned to fifth place after his performance in the 110m hurdles featuring a finish of 14.03. He held his fifth spot in the discus after watching his top throw travel 149-1. Scantling completed his session with a 5.10m (16-8.75) performance in the pole vault to stay fifth with two events remaining.
A native of Jacksonville, Fla., Scantling narrowly missed the 2016 Games after finishing one spot out in fourth at the U.S. Trials in the decathlon. However, this year Scantling won the Trials and punched his ticket to Tokyo. Temporarily retiring from the sport at the 2016 Trials, starting a career as a financial analyst and even having a stint with the Atlanta Falcons as a receiver before restarting his training in 2019, Scantling finished in the top three in the heptathlon at three separate NCAA Indoor Championships and was fourth in the decathlon at the 2014 NCAA outdoor meet. He also won a record-setting three SEC heptathlon titles as a Bulldog.
Erm matched Scantling’s clearance of 1.99m (6-6.25) in the high jump and dropped from 14th to 16th in the overall standings. While not a personal best, Erm also hit Scantling’s 400m time of 48.25 and finished the first half of the decathlon in 14th. Erm was in 14th following the 110m hurdles after he completed the race in 14.55. He hit an even 150 feet in the discus and inched his way to 12th place overall after seven events. Erm hit 4.80m (15-9) in the pole vault to finish his day and was 13th in the standings.
A native of Tallinn, Estonia, Erm captured the 2019 NCAA decathlon championship and is the No. 7 all-time collegiate performer in the decathlon. The five-time All-American has won a pair of SEC titles and was a CoSIDA Academic All-American in addition. Erm is expected to return for his final year as a Bulldog in 2021-22 after sitting out the 2021 season with an injury. He is at his first Olympics.
Uibo hit 2.02m (6-7.50) in the high jump as competition continued and was in 19th going into the 400m. He ran his lap in the 400m in 50.82 and was 18th through five of 10 events. Uibo returned to the 19th spot following the 110m hurdles thanks to his 14.83 in the event. He had the top effort for the Bulldogs in the discus with a throw of 152-2 and remained in 19th place. Uibo exploded for a career best in the pole vault (5.50m, 18-0.50) and rocketed to 12th in the standings.
A native of Polva, Estonia, Uibo was a four-time SEC champion in the multi-events for the Bulldogs, collected a pair of NCAA decathlon titles and was a six-time First Team All-American, including a runner-up finish in the heptathlon at the 2014 NCAA indoor meet. The 2015 SEC Indoor Scholar-Athlete of the Year remains the No. 6 all-time collegiate performer in the decathlon with a score of 8,356. He is at his second Olympics.
Tilga equaled Uibo’s mark of 2.02m (6-7.50) in the high jump and improved a spot to 21st. He had the third-best time of the Bulldog contingent in the 400m with a 50.48 and held on to 21st through the dec’s first half. Tilga remained in 21stthrough the 110m hurdles after registering a 16.10 in the race. He had a top discus toss of 135-6 and kept his spot following the seventh of 10 events. Continuing to battle a hamstring injury, Tilga did not earn a mark in the pole vault and remained 21st going into the last two events.
A native of Tartu, Estonia, Tilga became the third competitor in history to sweep the NCAA heptathlon and decathlon titles in 2021 with school record scores. He topped teammate Kyle Garland the indoor national championship in the heptathlon with the second-best score in NCAA history (6,264 points). Tilga then became the No. 2 all-time collegiate performer in the decathlon outdoors after tallying 8,484 points on the Spec Towns Track in Athens during the regular season. He is at his first Olympics and is expected to be back in the red and black this coming year.
Also in action was St. Lucia’s Levern Spencer competing in the high jump during her fourth trip to the Games. Carrying the flag for her home nation yet again, Spencer went over the bar at 1.86m (6-1.25) on her opening attempt and that is the height that was her best. This tied her for 22nd during the qualifying round.
A native of Castries, St. Lucia, Spencer became the first Olympic finalist in any event for St. Lucia after taking sixth in the high jump in 2016. Starting her career at Albany State, Spencer transferred to Georgia and became a three-time SEC champion and three-time All-American, including runner-up honors in the high jump at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships behind teammate Patricia Sylvester.
Thursday will be another busy day for the Bulldogs. Former All-American Morgann Leleux will pole vault in the final round at 6 a.m. to start the session. The four decathletes have the javelin at 6:15 a.m. and then conclude their 10 events with the 1500m at 8:40 a.m. Former NCAA champion Lynna Irby, who has already won a bronze medal on the mixed 4x400m relay, will run in the women’s 4x400m relay prelims at 6:25 a.m. while former All-American Charles Grethen will take the track in the men’s 1500m semifinal at 7 a.m. In addition, Williams will wrap up her heptathlon with the seventh event (800m) at 8:20 a.m.
Results and recaps from the Olympics will be found at georgiadogs.com. News and updates from Georgia’s track and field and cross country teams are always located on Twitter/Instagram at @UGATrack.