PHILADELPHIA, Penn. ? Earning five Top 15 performances on Thursday, Mississippi State track and field will head into day two of the 119th Penn Relays with a boost of momentum.
"It is always good to get that first day out of the way," MSU coach Steve Dudley said. "We have crossed that first hurdle, now the nervousness of the unexpected can disappear and make way for the excitement and adrenaline of competing."
Lady Bulldog Brittney Covington started the day off for the Maroon and White with a 27th-place finish in the 400-meter hurdles championships. Her time of 1:01.54 landed her spot in the top half a 54-athlete field.
John Valentine was the top-finishing Bulldog as he jumped hurdles, splashed through water and ran multiple laps to post a third-place time of 9:10.59 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
The MSU women also picked up a pair of top field performances before noon as Erica Bougard (19-00.75) finished 10th in the college long jump championships, while Alyssa Hall's clearance of 5-06.00 in the high jump placed her 11th. Later in the day, Sojourner Ewing donned a sixth-place performance in the long jump college competition with a leap of 19-04.25.
Just missing out on the championship finals, the Lady Bulldog quartet comprised of Ocian Archer, Jody-Ann Muir, Ste'yce McNeil and Bougard finished ninth in the college 4x400-meter relay, clocking a 3:40.02. The top eight teams will advance to Saturday's finals.
Dudley's squads will continue action this evening at Franklin Field with the women's college 10,000-meter championship at 10:15 p.m. Stay tuned for updated results by visiting www.thepennrelays.com and by following the Bulldogs on Twitter (@msutracksarah).
Action tomorrow will resume at 9 a.m.
College 400m Hurdles Championship: Samantha Elliot, Johnson C. Smith, 57.62