Smith Opens ACC Championships with Record Breaking Performance
BLACKSBURG, Va. – Junior Ayla Smith kicked off events at the 2009 Atlantic Coast Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships for the Cavaliers by winning the 60m hurdles in the pentathlon competition in an ACC Championship Meet record-breaking time of 8.40. The time is her best ever – marking a new school record in the event – and provisionally qualifies her for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 60m hurdles. In addition, her performance shattered Virginia Tech’s previous Rector Field House record of 8.52 in the pentathlons 60m hurdles set by Miami’s Amber Williams in 2005.
Overall, Smith collected 3879 points to better her previous NCAA provisional qualifying mark in the pentathlon and finish fourth on the day, collecting five team points for the Cavaliers. Sophomore Chidi Uche finished with 3294 points in the event.
Clemson’s women lead at the conclusion of the opening day with 18 points. NC State is second with six points and Virginia and Maryland are tied for third with five points each.
Smith followed up her 60m hurdles performance by clearing 5’ 1.25” in the high jump and throwing 33’ 2.5” in the shot put. She won her flight of the long jump, with a leap of 18’ 5.75” to finish sixth overall and concluded her performance with a second-place finish in the 800m in a time of 2:16.22.
Uche started the day setting a personal-best in the hurdle event, winning her section and finishing eighth in 8.80. She then cleared 4’ 5” in the high jump and threw 31’ 10.75” in the shot put. She jumped 16’ 5” in the long jump and ran the 800m in a time of 2:20.87, finishing fifth.
The Cavaliers will resume competition at the ACC Championships tomorrow at noon, with events concluding on Saturday.