SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Western Carolina’ Dakota Lamont and ETSU’s Ben Johnson have been named the Southern Conference men’s indoor track and field athletes of the week, respectively, for competition that took place Jan. 24-30, while ETSU’s Kyra Atkins and Western Carolina’s Autumn James claimed the honors on the women’s side, the conference office announced Wednesday.
Selections were made by panels of the league’s men’s and women’s track and field coaches.
At the VMI Team Challenge in Lexington, Virginia, on Saturday, Lamont earned Western Carolina’s first win of the day on the men’s side, turning in a time of 48.91 to claim the 400-meter dash and the top time in the SoCon this season. The senior from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, also anchored the Catamounts’ winning 4x400-meter relay unit, which took the win in 3:17.67, also the best time in the SoCon this year. Both marks were indoor personal records for Lamont, who also took the first weekly track honor of the season on Jan. 17.
ETSU’s Johnson also competed at the VMI Team Challenge, winning the men’s weight throw and setting school and facility records with a toss of 20.15 meters (66 feet, 1 1/2 inches), which is the longest in the SoCon this season by more than two meters. The redshirt junior from Nashville, Tennessee, also finished fourth in the shot put, throwing the implement 15.49 meters (50 feet, 10 inches), which is good for the second-best throw in the league this year.
ETSU’s Atkins turned in a pair of top-two track finishes at the VMI Team Challenge, winning the women’s 60-meter hurdles in 8.43 seconds after winning her qualifying heat in 8.65. Both times were better than the previous best in the SoCon this season. The junior from Greer, South Carolina, claimed second place in the 200-meter dash, posting a time of 24.91 seconds, the third-best in the league this season. Atkins also earned a second-place finish in a field event, taking second in the long jump with a leap of 5.62 meters (18 feet, 5 1/4 inches).
Catamount freshman James won the women’s triple jump at the VMI Team Challenge with a SoCon-leading mark of 11.90 meters (39 feet, 1/2 inch). The Wilmington, North Carolina, native also took second in the high jump with a leap of 1.65 meters (5 feet, 5 inches), clearing the bar on her first attempt for a personal record. Her height is tied for fourth in the SoCon this season.
Also nominated for men’s track athlete of the week: Simeon Roberts (ETSU).
Also nominated for men’s field athlete of the week: Kevin Hires (Western Carolina).
Also nominated for women’s field athlete of the week: Symphony Buxton (ETSU), Julia Logan (VMI)
2017-18 Southern Conference Indoor Track and Field Athletes of the Week
Jan. 17 Dakota Lamont, Western Carolina
Jan. 24 Arsène Guillorel, Samford
Jan. 31 Dakota Lamont, Western Carolina
Jan. 17 Tray Oates, Samford
Jan. 24 Keyth Fightmaster, Samford
Jan. 31 Ben Johnson, ETSU
Jan. 17 Ty-Leah Hampton, Western Carolina
Jan. 24 Karisa Nelson, Samford
Jan. 31 Kyra Atkins, ETSU
Jan. 17 Erin Hines, Samford
Jan. 24 Selena Popp, Samford
Jan. 31 Autumn James, Western Carolina