April 20, 2013
RALEIGH, N.C. - Virginia sophomore Jordan Lavender won the women's 400m title during the final day of the 2013 ACC Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the Paul H. Derr Track. The Cavalier women finished the meet tied for fourth, while the men finished the meet in sixth place.
"The kids laid everything on the line at this meet," said head coach Bryan Fetzer. "We came in with not a large number of athletes and not covering a lot of events. The performances our team had were very positive. We walk away fourth and sixth. Those are places I don't want to be in, in the future, but under the circumstances of this year, I am happy with our results. No one came here and didn't do what they were supposed to do. That's how you build a program."
Lavender won the 400m in a time of 52.95, a new PR and the third fastest time in school history. Her victory was Virginia's second ACC championship of the meet. Catherine White won the women's 10000m title on Thursday night.
"Jordan embodies what we are trying to do with the program," said Fetzer. "The amount of races she ran this weekend and the performances she had were impressive. She really showed today how good she can be. That was also the case for a lot of other kids on the team. When you are on the verge of greatness, the first key is believing you can be great. I think today showed that Jordan belongs among the nation's best."
The Cavaliers will return to action in three weeks they host the Virginia Challenge. The meet runs May 10-11 at Lannigan Field.
Women's Day Three Recap
The Virginia women finished in a fourth place tie with Duke with 76 points. Clemson (151 pts) edged Florida State (146 pts) for the championship. Host NC State was third with 82 points.
Lavender's victory in the 400m wasn't the only strong performance on the track for the Cavaliers. Vicky Fouhy had a second place finish in the 1500m, crossing in a time of 4:21.43. Vanessa Fabrizio also earned a second place finish, running the 800m in 2:06.54. Lavender and Peyton Chaney were third and fourth in the 200m, in 23.98 and 24.09 respectively. Chaney added a sixth place finish in the 100m, running a PR of 11.93. Barbara Strehler was eighth in the women's 5000m, running a PR of 16:26.64, the seventh best time in school history.
"Winning the 400 means so much to me," said Lavender. "I have been thinking about this moment since my freshman year. To step to the top of that podium and hear my name announced as champion is a great feeling."
In the field events, Pearl Bickersteth was fourth in the high jump, clearing a season-best 5-10.5.
The Cavaliers concluded the meet with a fifth place finish in the 4x400m relay. The team of Chaney, Fabrizio, Lavender and Colette Gnade ran in a time of 3:40.59, the seventh fastest 4x400m relay in school history.
Men's Day Three Recap
Virginia men placed sixth at the meet with 63 points. Florida State won the championship with 149 points, followed by Virginia Tech (138), Clemson (114), North Carolina (113) and Duke (66).
The Cavaliers had two of the top five finishers in the men's 5000m. Mark Amirault was second, running 13:59.21, the seventh fastest time in school history. Thomas Porter, who was second in the 10000m on Thursday night, finished fifth in the 5000m, posting the ninth fastest time in school history at 14:03.06.
In the 400m, Payton Hazzard finished fourth in a PR of 46.18. He broke his previous PR by almost a full second and the time was the second fastest in school history.
Brandon Burton, who ran a PR in qualifying of the 400m hurdles, finished eighth in the final in a time of 53.93.
The meet's two relays were also held on Saturday. The Cavaliers' 4x100m team of Aaron Shepperd, Ozzie Bryan, Scott Clarke and Hazzard finished fourth in a time of 41.74. The 4x400 relay also came in fourth, as Burton, Hazzard, Bryan and Anthony Kostelac crossed in a time of 3:14.51.
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A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
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