SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Samford’s Emmanuel Tait and Wofford’s Conrad Heinrich have been named the Southern Conference men’s outdoor track and field athletes of the week, respectively, while Wofford’s McLeod Dean and ETSU’s Alyssa Whipkey earned the respective women’s honors, the conference office announced Wednesday.
Selections were made by panels of the league’s track and field coaches and included all competition from April 4-10.
Samford’s Tait won his second award in the last three weeks after earning a pair of wins in the sprints at the South Alabama Invitational in Mobile, Alabama, on Friday. The sophomore from Alabaster, Alabama, got his meet started with victory in the 100-meter dash in a time of 10.20 seconds, a time that leads the SoCon and ranks 10th on the NCAA Division I performance list this season. Tait followed that up with another win, this time in the 200-meter dash. He did so with a time of 20.90 seconds, also good for a SoCon-best time on the year.
Wofford’s Heinrich competed in the Hurricane Alumni Invitational in Coral Gables, Florida, over the weekend, taking fifth in the javelin and fifth in the decathlon. Heinrich turned in a throw of 54.70 meters (179 feet, 5 inches) in the javelin, good for second on the SoCon performance list this season. In the decathlon, the junior from Sugar Land, Texas, finished first in the javelin (53.44 meters/175 feet, 4 inches) and the 1,500-meter run (4:37.37) en route to a total 5,933 points, which also ranks second on the SoCon performance list. Heinrich becomes Wofford’s second-ever male student-athlete to earn an outdoor weekly award from the SoCon and the first since Adrien Borders did so in 2005. Borders was also honored once in 2003.
Wofford’s Dean was also in action at the Hurricane Alumni Invitational. The junior from Maryville, Tennessee, set a pair of school sprint records on the weekend, doing so in the 100-meter dash and the 200-meter dash. Dean finished 10th overall and was the eighth collegiate finisher in the 100m, crossing the finish line in 11.77 seconds, good for the top mark in the SoCon this season. She also posted a league-leading mark in the 200m, finishing 12th overall (fifth collegian) in 23.80. In addition, Dean ran legs on the Terriers’ 4x100-meter (47.67 seconds) and 4x400-meter (3:52.89) relay teams, helping both to season-best times. Dean becomes just Wofford’s third-ever female student-athlete to earn outdoor weekly honors, joining LeAndrea Combo, who took the first weekly track honor of the 2016 season, and Hannah Steelman, who took the first track award this season.
ETSU’s Whipkey picked up a win in her only event of the week, topping the 18-woman field in the javelin at the VertKlasse Meeting in High Point, North Carolina, on Friday. The junior unleashed a career-best and conference-leading throw of 45.64 meters (149 feet, 9 inches), outdistancing the field by nearly five meters and supplanting her personal record, set two weeks ago at the Weems Baskin Invitational, by more than two meters. The Pennsville, New Jersey, native, in her first season at ETSU after transferring from Georgian Court University, ranks 29th on the performance list in the East Region.
Also nominated for men’s field athlete of the week: Tray Oates (Samford).
Also nominated for women’s track athlete of the week: Erin Hines (Samford) and Emily Poole (Chattanooga).
Also nominated for women’s field athlete of the week: Alex Williams (Mercer).
2018 Southern Conference Outdoor Track and Field Athletes of the Week
March 21 Chace Washington-Saunders, Western Carolina
March 28 Emmanuel Tait, Samford
April 4 Simeon Roberts, ETSU
April 11 Emmanuel Tait, Samford
March 21 Mateius Brown, Western Carolina
March 28 Ben Johnson, ETSU
April 4 Tray Oates, Samford
April 11 Conrad Heinrich, Wofford
March 21 Hannah Steelman, Wofford
March 28 Sarah Sanford, Samford
April 4 Emma Grace Hurley, Furman
April 11 McLeod Dean, Wofford
March 21 Makaila McIntyre, Western Carolina
March 28 Erin Hines, Samford
April 4 Jaelyn Warren, Western Carolina
April 11 Alyssa Whipkey, ETSU