UGA Track & Field Earns SEC Honors, Women No. 2 in Nation

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UGA Track & Field Earns SEC Honors, Women No. 2 in Nation

Ashinia Miller throws the discus  (Photo by John Kelley)
[break] Georgia’s Ashinia Miller, Kendell Williams and Keturah Orji have all earned Southeastern Conference track and field weekly awards following the McCravy Memorial in Lexington, Ky., according to a league announcement on Tuesday.
[break] [break] Miller was named the SEC Men’s Field Athlete of the Week for the first time while Williams garnered her third career indoor honor and first this year after being named the Women’s Field Athlete of the Week.  Orji has now been named the Women’s Freshman of the Week for the second consecutive week following her second collegiate meet.
[break] [break] In addition, the Lady Bulldogs shot to No. 2 from No. 4 in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association national poll while the Georgia men moved from No. 11 to No. 6.  The Georgia women tied for third at last year’s NCAA Indoor Championships and finished with a program-best No. 3 ranking to end 2014.  This marks the Bulldog men’s first top-10 spot after also creeping to No. 11 during 2009 regular season.
[break] [break] Miller, a junior from Kingston, Jamaica, vaulted himself into the national spotlight with a fifth attempt in the shot put that measured 66 feet, 7 ¾ inches to win the event.  Opening with a personal-best 65-foot toss, Miller shattered a 20-year-old school record (66-3 by Brent Noon at the 1995 SEC Championships) with his top effort four throws later.  He took over the national lead in the event and currently ranks fourth in the world this season.
[break] [break] Williams, a sophomore from Marietta, Ga., finished with a pentathlon score of 4,609, which trails only her collegiate-record score of 4,635 set at last year’s NCAA Championships on the collegiate all-time list.  Williams posted personal bests in both the long jump (21-2.50) and the shot put (41-10.75) during her five events.  Her score is the top non-altitude collegiate score in history and she now owns two scores on the U.S. all-time top-10 list.  Williams’ score is the top in the NCAA and the world so far this season.
[break] [break] Orji, a true freshman from Mount Olive, N.J., Orji, a true freshman, left the Rod McCravy Memorial with American Junior, school, meet and Nutter Field House records in the women’s triple jump to be the No. 9 performer on the all-time collegiate list.  She now owns four of the top five U.S. Junior jumps indoors in history after four of her jumps measured better than 45 feet, including her top effort of 45-10.50.  She held off Florida senior Ciarra Brewer for the victory and is No. 2 on the 2015 world list in the triple jump.
[break] [break] Last week, Orji was also named the SEC Freshman of the Week after taking an early national lead in the long jump with a mark of 20-10.75 at the Auburn Invitational.  She currently stands fifth on the national performance list and ranks third in the SEC behind Williams and national leader Sha’Keela Saunders from Kentucky.
[break] [break] A trio of Georgia team members travels to Winston-Salem, N.C., for the Camel City Elite meet on Saturday.  Georgia returns to action as a team at the Doc Hale VT Elite meet in Blacksburg, Va., on February 6-7.

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Greg is closing in on 15 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.