DANVILLE, Ky. – Olivia Whatley (SO/Douglasville, Ga.) became the second person in Union College women's track & field history to qualify for the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championship Meet as the Bulldogs posted a strong showing at the Centre College Twilight Meet on Friday.
The Union men placed third out of 11 teams in scoring 98 points, while the Union women registered a seventh-place showing with 60 points.
Whatley scored a school-record time in the 100 meter hurdles, placing third in crossing the line in 14.88 seconds. The time qualifies her for the national championship meet and is the 23rd fastest in the NAIA this year. Whatley surpassed the old mark by 0.52 seconds.
The Louisville, Ky., native joins Jayla Lane as the only persons in women's track & field history to qualify for nationals. Lane achieved the feat last year when she qualified in the long jump.
In all, Union placed three in the top six in the 100 hurdles with Katie Herdman (JR/New Carlisle, Ohio) placing fifth (15.50 seconds) and Caylin Mattox (SO/Cynthiana, Ky.) placing sixth (16.29 seconds).
Other top performances by the Union women include:
- 4x100 relay, second place (49.15 seconds);
- Mykelle Andrews (SO/Louisville, Ky.), third in the 100 meter dash (12.41 seconds);
- Jada Ross (FR/Buchanan, Ga.), sixth in the 100 meter dash (12.67 seconds);
- Ta'Leah Adams (FR/Madison, Ga.), third in the hammer throw (41.45 meters);
- Molly Diamon (JR/Independence, Ky.), sixth in the hammer throw (37.26 meters);
- JaNae Marzell (FR/McDonough, Ga.), eighth in the hammer throw (34.90 meters);
- Adams, fourth in the shot put (11.18 meters);
- Herdman, fifth in the long jump (4.94 meters);
- Autumn Crump (JR/Marion, Ark.), fourth in the triple jump (10.69 meters);
- Tamia Wade (SO/Calhoun, Ga.), fifth in the triple jump (10.42 meters);
- Reanna Elswick (SO/Jenkins, Ky.), seventh in the pole vault (2.49 meters).
The Union men dominated the field events, especially the long jump as the Bulldogs placed first, second, and third. Santerrius Barlow (FR/Spalding, Ga.) set the school record in the event with a leap of 7.01 meters (23 feet, 0 inches). Jerome Morgan Jr. (FR/Rossville, Ga.) took second with a jump of 6.93 meters (22 feet, 9 inches), which was good enough to beat the old school record of 22 feet, 2.50 inches. Xavier Bailey (FR/Rome, Ga.) rounded things out with a third-place leap of 6.70 meters (21 feet, 11.75 inches).
Xavier Bailey registered the only other first-place finish as he won the triple jump with a distance of 14.09 meters (46 feet, 2.75 inches). Morgan posted a fifth-place showing as he covered 13.15 meters (43 feet, 1.75 inches).
Stephen Gray (JR/Louisville, Ky.) recorded three top-four finishes. He took second in the shot put (13.32 meters) and discus (38.73), while placing fourth in the hammer throw (43.18 meters).
Other top performances from the Union men include:
- 4x100 relay, second place (42.43 seconds);
- Dominique Lewis (FR/Kennesaw, Ga.), second place in the 400 meter dash (49.91 seconds);
- Silas Williams (FR/Boiling Springs, S.C.), fourth place in the 200 meter dash (22.16 seconds);
- Owen Peacock (FR/Peachtree City, Ga.), fourth place in the shot put (12.73 meters);
- Reggie Springfield (JR/Louisville, Ky.), fifth place in the shot put (12.44 meters);
- Michaiah Winfield (FR/Atlanta, Ga.), third place in the high jump (1.88 meters);
- Bailey, eighth place in the high jump (1.73 meters).
Union will next compete at the 2017 Appalachian Athletic Conference Championship Meet on Friday and Saturday in Montreat, N.C. The Union women look to repeat as champions, while the Union men seek to improve upon last year's second-place finish.