UMES QUALIFIES ATHLETES FOR NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
March 7, 2012
Princess Anne, Md. --Two University of Maryland Eastern Shore Indoor Track and Field student-athletes punched their tickets to the national championships following stellar performances in the IC4A/Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference Championships Saturday. Andre Walsh and Lenora Firmin-Guion each performed exceptionally to qualify for NCAA Championships in Boise, Idaho. The UMES men's team finished third while the women took second place.
The women's team missed a first place finish by one point, finishing with a total of 54 points to Cornell's 55 points. "I am extremely proud of my student-athletes," said head coach Ernest Barrett.
"We had a great year and they represented UMES with class and pride," he continued. The Hawks' Andre Walsh sprint a 20.89-second 200-meter dash, winning the race and qualifying for the NCAA with the eighth best performance in the country.
Lenora Firmin-Guion won both the 200 and 400-meter races, earning her the ECAC Most Valuable Performer, and qualifying her for the NCAA Championships. Firmin-Guion finished first in the 200 in a time of 23.85, while finishing in the 400 in 53.19.
Vanessa Henry won the shot put and ECAC Field Athlete of the Year recognition for the Mid-Atlantic region. Henry has had consistent UMES and meet record breaking performances throughout the year.
Cynthia Anais and Ackeem Smith also performed well in the ECAC championships. Anais ran a 2:05.65 in the 800m to win the ECAC event. Anais, like Henry, has broken and set new meet and school records for UMES. She could potentially qualify for a NCAA spot given her performances this season.
Smith finished in the top three of the 60-meter hurdles with a final time of 7.86. His best is a 7.81 in the event which he ran at the New Balance College Invitational.
Zavior Brown finished fourth in the 800m in a time of 1:50.74, and later joined Walsh, Kraig Webb and Marcus Wallace to take the top position in the first finals of the 4x400m relay. The team finished in a time of 3:13.21.
The UMES athletes confirmed to compete in the NCAA Indoor Championships will travel to Boise, Idaho in hopes of returning as a national champion. Championships will be held March 9-10.