Last Updated 7/14/13



2006 Track And Field Season Outlook
Bulldogs look to improve on 2005 season.

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January 24 , 2006

The Samford University track and field teams are coming off another strong season as the men and women prepare for 2006. The 2005 men's team finished fourth at both the Ohio Valley Conference Indoor Championships and the OVC Outdoor Championships, while the women finished fourth at the Indoor Championships and fifth at the Outdoor Championships.

Both teams had a number of All-OVC performers and Samford distance runner Lauren Blankenship made history when she became the first Samford runner to be named All-American in June. Blankenship received All-America honors for outdoor track following her ninth-finish in the 5,000 meters at the NCAA National Championships in Sacramento, Calif. The Alpharetta, Ga., native was eighth out of American-born runners in the event, turning in a time of 16:54.16...

The Bulldog sprinters, jumpers, throwers and hurdlers also received a number of accolades. April Howell was a two-event all-conference performer in 2005, earning All-OVC honors following her first-place finish in the 60-meter hurdles during the indoor season and for her second-place finish in the triple jump during the outdoor season.

Mark Holmes was named all-conference following his second-place finish at the 2005 Indoor Championships. Michael Smith is another two-event all-conference performer, earning the honors after finishing third in the 110-meter hurdles and second in the 400-meter hurdles during the outdoor season...

In addition, Trent Schmidt, a 2004 conference champion and the school record holder in the pole vault, returns to compete in his senior season after red-shirting in 2005. Schmidt will add some much needed leadership and experience to a young men's team.

Holmes is another talented redshirt senior returning for the Bulldogs. Holmes was named All-OVC as a redshirt sophomore in 2004 following his third-place finish at the OVC Championships, and has steadily improved since his freshman year at Samford in 2002. Samford head coach Glenn McWaters looks for Schmidt and Holmes to finish as some of the top pole vaulters at the 2006 OVC Championships.

Samford will compete at the OVC Outdoor Championships in Cape Girardeau, Mo., this year, before heading to the Georgia Tech Invitational, the NCAA Regional Championships and the NCAA Championships.

"Our goal is just to get better than we were last year," McWaters said. "What we try to do is help these athletes improve from where they were in previous years, and hopefully we'll show some improvements."


Track And Field Wins Four Events At Mississippi State Bulldog Invitational, Saturday
The men's team placed third overall, while the women's team finished in sixth place.

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April 2, 2005

STARKVILE, Miss. - The Samford University track and field team took four events at the Mississippi State Bulldog Invitational on Saturday (April 2) at the Carl Maddox Track, located on the campus of Mississippi State University. Mississippi State took the crown on the men's side, while LSU took the crown on the women's side. For the Bulldogs, the men's team finished in third place with 105 ½ points, while the women's team placed third with a score of 45 points.

On the men's side, Michael Smith won the 400m hurdles with a time of 53.92, while Mark Holmes took the individual crown in the pole vault with a leap of 15-00.00.

Also competing well for the Bulldogs, Bryan Baddorf finshed second overall in the 5000m with a time of 15:23.00, while not far behind Drew Anderwald placed third in the same event with a time of 15:26.56. Samford's Chad Johnson placed third in the 3000m steeplechase with a time of 9:40.64, while Eric Holsomback finished in third place in the javelin throw with a toss of 157-04 and Derek Simmons also placed third in the discus throw with a toss of 147-11...

Selected individual from the Samford track and field team will travel to compete at the Texas Relays on Wednesday-Saturday, April 6-9 in Austin, Tex.


Track And Field Has Outstanding Performance At Samford Invitational Saturday
The Bulldogs won 11 events for the day.

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March 12, 2005

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.- The Samford University track and field team hosted the Samford Invitational today (March 12) at Seibert Stadium.

In field events, Samford's Ciara Floyd took the women's long jump with a leap of 17-01.25, while on the men's side Bulldog Michael Smith took this event with a jump of 21-02.00, while Samford's Austin Walker finished third (18-01.50) and James Steinberger finished fourth (17-10.25).

In the women's triple jump, UAB's Tiffany Parker finished first with a leap of 36-04.00, while on the men's side Calvin's Luke Allison took this event with a leap of 43-09.75 and teammate Tim Zwiers finished second (43-01.50). Samford's Robert Weaver placed third with a leap of 40-11.50.

In the women's high jump, Samford's Laura Malnati took this event with leap of 5-05.00, while Calvin's Kimberly Vanderzee and Clark-Atlanta's Nikki Hill tied for second place. On the men's side, Samford's Robert Weaver took the event with a leap of 6-00.75.

In the men's javelin throw, Calvin's Nate Meckes won with a toss of 169-01, while Samford's Eric Holsomback finshed in second place (143-09). On the women's side, Clark-Atlanta's Tamara Nelson took the event with a toss of 133-04, while Calvin's Christine Hendricks placed second with a toss of 121-10.

In the women's pole vault, Calvin's Missy Smith took the event with leap of 12-05.50, while Samford's Tracy Walz finished seventh with a leap of 8-06.25. On the men's side, Samford's Mark Holmes took the event with a leap of 15-00, while Samford's Trent Schmidt (Unattached) finished second (14-06.00) and James Steinberger placed third (12-11.75)...

The Bulldogs will head to the Alabama Relays on Thursday-Sunday, March 17-20, hosted by the University of Alabama, located in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Meet time is TBA.


Track And Field Set To Compete At 2005 OVC Indoor Championships, Friday-Saturday
The competition will be hosted by Eastern Illinois in Charleston, Ill.

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February 24, 2005

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The Samford University track and field teams will compete at the 2005 OVC Indoor Championships, hosted by Eastern Illinois, on Friday-Saturday, Feb. 25-26 at the Lantz Fieldhouse in Charleston, Ill. The meet will show off seven men's teams and ten women's teams with Friday's competition starting at 4 p.m. CST, while Saturday's meet is set for an 11 a.m. start. EIU's men's team and Southeast Missouri's women's team will look to defend their titles.

Last season, both Samford teams finished fifth overall with former Bulldog Jennifer Craig taking the individual crown in the 60-meters. Bulldogs Bryan Baddorf (5000m), April Howell (60m hurdles) and the women's distance medley team all finished second overall in their individual events.

For the indoor season, the Bulldogs broke eight of Samford's all-time records at the Rod McCravy Memorial (Jan. 29), while only breaking three at the Clemson Tiger Invite (Feb. 12). Lauren Blankenship received OVC Track Athlete of the Week honors, after her remarkable performance at the Rod McCravy Memorial as she broke a Samford all-time record in the 3000-meter with a time of 9:37.13, just two seconds shy of an NCAA qualifying time. After the Clemson Tiger Invite, Mark Holmes and Howell were honored with OVC Field Athlete of the Week accolades. Holmes finished fourth overall in the pole vault as he tied his own Samford all-time record (15-01), while Howell broke a Samford all-time record in the triple jump with a leap of 38-02.75.


Mark Holmes and April Howell Receives OVC Field Athlete Of The Week Accolades
Two Bulldogs earn OVC weekly honors after their remarkable performances at the Clemson Tiger Invite on Saturday, Feb. 12.

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February 16, 2005

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Juniors Mark Holmes and April Howell earned OVC Field Athlete of the Week honors, the conference office announced Tuesday evening, after their remarkable performance at the Clemson Tiger Invitational, hosted by Clemson on Feb. 12.

April Howell broke a Samford all-time record in the triple jump with a leap of 38-02.75 at the Clemson Tiger Invite.

Holmes finished fourth overall in the pole vault as he tied his Samford all-time record (15-01), while Howell broke a Samford all-time record in the triple jump with a leap of 38-02.75 as she placed 12th overall out of 30 jumpers.

The Bulldogs will head to the OVC Indoor Championships on Feb. 25-26. Eastern Illinois will host this event in Charleston, Ill. Meet time is TBA.


Track And Field Breaks Three School Records At Clemson Tiger Invite On Saturday
Lauren Blankenship finished as the top Bulldog performer for the second-consecutive week.

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February 12, 2005

CLEMSON, S.C. -- The Samford University track and field teams finished their second meet of the 2005 indoor season at the Clemson Tiger Invitational today (Feb. 12) with competition taking place at the Clemson Indoor Complex. The Bulldogs top performer was Lauren Blankenship as she took the individual title in the 3000-meter run with a time of 9:55.

"We have some things to work on," said head coach Glenn McWaters. "I am very proud of the team for their tremendous efforts at today's meet, but now we will go home and work on the errors we made and get ready for the conference championships."

On the women's side, April Howell broke a Samford record in the triple jump with a leap of 38-02.75.

On the men's side, Michael Smith, Austin Walker, Sean Rogers and Patrick Weaver broke a Samford record in the 4x400 meter relay as they finished in third overall with a time of 3:25. Also breaking a school record, Eddie Mason placed fifth overall in the shot put with a toss of 50-03.25, while Mark Holmes tied his Samford record (15-01) in the pole vault with his fourth-place finish.

Also performing well for the Bulldogs, Blankenship, Michelle Brewer, Mary Nunnally and Robyn DeBenedet won the women's distance medley with a time of 11:58.43. Not far behind Blankenship, freshman Britney Almaguer also finished the 3000-meter run in third place with a time of 10.11, while DeBenedet posted a second-place finish in the 800-meter run (2:16.35) and Lauren Malnati posted a leap of 5-06 in the high jump.

In the men's 60-meter hurdles, Michael Smith finished fifth overall with a time of 8.41.

The Bulldogs will head to the OVC Indoor Championships on Feb. 25-26. Eastern Illinois will host this event in Charleston, Ill. Meet time is TBA.


Track And Field Breaks Eight School Records At Rod McCravy Memorial
The Bulldogs finished its first indoor meet of the 2005 season with many great performances.

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January 29, 2005

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- The Samford University track and field team broke eight of Samford's all-time records at the Rod McCravy Memorial on Saturday, Jan. 29., hosted by Kentucky. Sophomore Lauren Blankenship was the top performer for the Bulldogs as she finished second overall in the 3000-meters with a time of 9:37.13, just two seconds shy of a NCAA qualifying time.

"I am very, very pleased with the performance of this team," said head coach Glenn McWaters. "This was our first indoor meet of the season and most of the team had not returned to classes until this week. We performed very well and look forward to the rest of the 2005 season."

Samford all-time record breakers on the women's side were Robyn DeBenedet, who finished sixth in the mile with a time of 5:07, Laura Malnati, who completed the high jump in fourth place with a leap of 5-06.00 and Cameron Cardwell, who finished the pole vault in tenth with a distance of 10-06.00.

Also breaking a school record in the women's distance medley, Blankenship, DeBendet, Michelle Brewer and Sarah Aultman finished the race in second overall with a time of 12.02.

On the men's side and also breaking school records, Mark Holmes finished third in the pole vault with a distance of 15-01.00, while Eddie Mason completed the shot put in eighth place with a throw of 49-01.00.

In the men's 4x400 meter relay, Michael Smith, Austin Walker, Christopher Smith and Patrick Weaver finished the race in eighth place with a Samford all-time record time of 3.26.07.
Also competing well on the men's side, Cortland Finnegan, a safety on the Samford football team, ran his first collegiate race and finished fifth overall in the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.96, almost breaking a Samford school record.

The Bulldogs will head to Clemson S.C. to compete in the Clemson Invitational on Saturday, Feb. 12.


Track and Field Starts Solid at the Alabama Relays
Trent Schmidt Qualified for the NCAA's

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March 21, 2004

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The Samford track and field team competed at the Alabama Relays and turned in some impressive performances. The Bulldogs broke four school records and Trent Schmidt qualified for the NCAA Regionals in the pole vault.

Jennifer Craig broke the school record in the 100m finishing ninth with a time of 11.99, and she broke the school record in the 200m finishing 6th in a time of 24.26. Jessica Brewer finished second in the 3000m steeplechase in a school record time of 11:24.67. April Howell finished seventh in the 100m hurdles in a time of 14.29 and fifth in the triple jump with a distance of 37-05.75. Lauren Blankenship finished ninth in the 1500m and the Bulldogs distance relay team finished fourth in a time of 12:17.81.

On the men's side Trent Schmidt broke the school record in the pole vault with a distance of 16-04.75. With that height, Schmidt qualified for the NCAA Regionals. Schmidt finished first at the Alabama Relays and teammate Mark Holmes finished second. Chad Johnson finished third in the 3000m steeplechase in a time of 9:34.39 and Bryan Baddorf finished eighth in the 5000m in a time of 15:04.42.


Indoor Track and Field Competing for OVC Championship
The two-day event is taking place in Charleston, Ill.

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February 7 , 2004

CHARLESTON, Ill. - Samford track and field are competing for the Ohio Valley Conference Indoor Track and Field Championship this weekend in Charleston, Ill. The Bulldogs have competed in two meets so far this season and two Bulldogs have earned All-OVC honors.

The Bulldogs set nine school records in the two indoor meets this season and are at the top of their game. Jennifer Craig was named OVC Female Track Athlete of the Week after breaking four school records at the Rod McCravy Memorial Meet. Craig has the second fastest 60m time in the OVC at 7.58 only .02 behind the leader, she also has the second fastest 200m time in the conference with a 24.59. Samford has the fastest distance relay time of the season in the OVC12:40.52, which is four seconds faster than Southeast Missouri State.

Mark Holmes holds the OVC high in the pole vault on the season clearing 15-00.00" and the men's distance relay team has the second fastest time entering the OVC meet with a time of 10:42.65.


Track and Field Performs Well at Auburn
Bulldogs compete against nation's top-ranked teams

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May 5, 2003

AUBURN, Ala. -- Freshman Andrew Middleton, sophomore Bryan Baddorf and sophomore Ricky McLain finished 1-2-3 in the men's 5,000 meters, highlighting several solid performances by the Bulldogs Sunday at the Auburn Invite. Host Auburn's men's team is ranked No. 1 in the nation, and its women's team is No. 7.

Sophomore Daniel Balena continued a stand-out season in his signature event, defeating Auburn's Ned Ashley for a victory in the men's javelin. Balena's mark was 186'03".

A day after a school-record performance, freshman Jennifer Craig finished first in her heat in the women's 100 meters. Craig, the lone Bulldog competing at the Georgia Invitational Saturday, set the women's 200 meters school record with a time of 24.50 seconds.

At Sunday's meet, freshman April Howell finished second in the women's triple jump, freshman Tiffany London finished second in her heat in the women's 100 meters and freshman Michelle Brewer turned in a third-place finish in the women's 3,000 meters with a time of 10:24.15. Laura Malnati, competing unattached, finished third in the women's high jump.

Junior Clay DeMore finished third in the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase, and red-shirt freshman Mark Holmes set a personal record in the pole vault, clearing 14'05.25".

The Bulldogs are scheduled to compete next at the Georgia Tech Invitational May 17-18.

For complete results from Sunday's meet, go to www.auburntigers.com.


Men's Track And Field Leads A-Suns
Six Bulldogs earn All-Conference honors on day one

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April 17, 2003

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Samford's men's track and field leads the Atlantic Sun Championships with 59 points after one day of competition. Pete Fox and Daniel Balena were each crowned a conference champion Thursday, and six Bulldogs earned all-conference honors. A full day of events is scheduled for Friday, when the men hope to sustain the lead and the women's team begins competing in earnest.

The afternoon started as well as the Bulldogs could have hoped, with a sweep of the hammer throw. Sophomore Pete Fox (43.07m) won the event, and his senior teammates Josh Caldwell (43.03m) and Keeton Blakeney (42.43m) finished second and third, respectively.

Red-shirt freshman Mark Holmes earned all-conference in the pole vault, clearing 14' and finishing second.

Sophomore Daniel Balena won the javelin with a mark of 58.66m.

Competition at the conference track & field meet takes on a new significance this year as the NCAA Championship format includes automatic qualification for the first time. This is the first year that regional competition will be conducted and each of the individual champions will automatically qualify for the NCAA Regional Meet. Conference champions Balena (javelin) and Fox (hammer throw) each qualified for the regionals, which will be May 30-31 in Columbus, Ohio.

In the 10,000 meters, Bryan Baddorf finished second behind Belmont's William Kemey. Baddorf finished with an all-conference time of 31:59.

Nathan Russell scored points for the Bulldogs Thursday, placing fourth in the long jump at the A-Suns.

Four other Bulldogs scored points with top-six individual finishes. Sophomore Nathan Russell finished fourth in the long jump with a mark of 21'10". Sophomore Ricky McLain finished fifth in the 10,000 meters, clocking a 33:15. And sophomore Derek Simmons was fifth in the javelin with a mark of 46.70m. Senior James Drake rounded out the scoring for the Bulldogs, picking up a point with a throw of 44.88m and sixth-place finish in the javelin.

Troy State is in second place with 45 points. Belmont is third with 23 points.

Although the majority of events still remain to be completed for the Bulldog women, freshman April Howell advanced to Friday's finals of the 100 meter hurdles by virtue of a preliminary heat time of 14.4 seconds.

Friday's competion begins at 1:45 p.m. Eastern, with the women's 100 meters final. The last event, the women's 4 x 400 meters, is scheduled to begin at 4:10 p.m. Eastern.


Track And Field Hosts 27 Teams, Breaks Four School Records
Bulldogs head to Tuscaloosa for Alabama Relays next week
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March 15, 2003

The Bulldogs hosted the outdoor track and field season-opening Samford Invitational on Saturday, welcoming 27 teams from around the area to Seibert Stadium. Area schools Alabama (women), UAB (women), BSC, TSU, JSU and Wallace State participated in the all-day event.

Samford performed well on its home track and field, posting four school records unofficially.

The women's 4 x 100 meter team of Jennifer Craig, Sarah Aultman, April Howell and Tiffany London set a school record with a time of 46.99 seconds. The old record was 47.45, set in 1997.

Derek Simmons broke the school record in the discus, with a mark of 46.10 meters. Daniel Balena set a school record in the javelin with a throw of 57.37 meters. Bryan Baddorf set a new school record in the 5,000 meters, with a time of 14:44.28. The old record was 14:48.10.

The Bulldogs had several strong individual finishes. Michelle Brewer and Katie Flewellyn finished 1-2, respectively, in the women's 1,500 meters. Sarah Aultman won the women's long jump. Mark Holmes won the men's pole vault. Derek Simmons won the men's discus, and Josh Caldwell finished second. And finally, Daniel Balena won the javelin.

The Bulldogs will compete next in the Alabama Relays from March 20-23.