Feb. 28, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Long jumper Charla Craddock won the first Conference USA Championship by a Louisiana Tech student-athlete and Trey Hadnot set a new C-USA record as action concluded during the first day of the 2014 C-USA Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Craddock claimed gold in the women's long jump as she set a new personal best mark by nine inches. A native of Farmerville, Texas, she jumped 19-9.5 (6.03m) to claim the first Conference USA Championship by any Louisiana Tech team or individual student-athlete. She entered the C-USA meet ranked second.
Her success continued over to the track as her times of 7.48 in the 60m dash and 24.17 in the 200m sent her to Saturday's finals races in both events. Danielle Zenon would finish fourth in the long jump with a mark of 19-0.5 (5.80m) while Mia Adams finished fifth, jumping 19-0.5 (5.80m). LaQuanda James joins Craddock in the 200m finals after running a prelims time of 24.62.
On the men's side, Hadnot set a new C-USA record as he ran 20.89 in the 200m prelims. His time breaks the old record of 20.91 set by East Carolina's LaShawn Merritt in 2005. Merritt would go on to win two gold medals at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
Hadnot's time sends him to the finals along with Jermey Hicks, who ran 21.75 to finish sixth in the prelims. Hadnot and Hicks will both also run in the 60m dash finals Saturday after they both ran an advancing time of 6.78, as did Isaiah Underwood. Dennis Richardson is the fourth Bulldog to advance to the eight-man 60m dash finals after running a prelims-best time of 6.75.
Overall through the first day the women's team is in fourth place with 21 points, just eight points behind leader East Carolina (29). UTSA (25) is in second while UAB (24) is in third in a closely-contested meet. The men finish the first day in seventh place scoring 15.5 points and only trailing sixth-place Tulsa (20) by 4.5 points.
Aaron Orduno and William Washington both set personal bests in the shot put as Orduno finished third with a throw of 52-3.75 (15.64m) while Washington's mark of 48-6.25 (14.79m) placed him sixth. Another personal record was set in the high jump as Tamario Lattin's height of 6-8.75 (2.05m) tied him for seventh place after entering the meet ranked 11th.
SaBrittany Angelle was the first Lady Techster to score in the meet as she finished seventh in the weight throw with a mark of 54-9.25 (16.69m). Angelle entered the weekend ranked eighth.
The Lady Techsters are sending three to the 60m hurdles finals as Bianca Jackson and Kim Francis ran matching advancing times of 8.36 while Marlesia Carey ran 8.51 to claim the seventh spot (out of eight).
The Conference USA Championship meet wraps up on Saturday with field events starting at Noon and running events starting at 2 p.m.
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