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Atherley Defends Heptathlon Title

by Ashleigh Young

RALEIGH, N.C. – Michelle Atherley became the third female in the ACC to claim three consecutive ACC heptathlon titles on Friday at the ACC Outdoor Championships.

With a score of 6,019 points, Atherley boasted a facility record to defend her title and score 10 points for the women’s team. The North Port, Fla., native began the final day of the heptathlon in the long jump with a second-place finish at 5.98m.

She took first in the javelin with a personal-best throw of 37.86m to improve her No. 4 all-time mark in Miami history. She took home the title with her second-place result in the 800m with a time of 2:13.27.

Hannah Hall posted a personal-best mark in the shot put and earned the silver medal with her mark of 16.66m. The mark now ranks as No. 3 in Miami history and scored eight points for the women’s team. Debbie Ajagbe finished fifth with her mark of 16.32m and Selina Dantzler finished just behind at 16.15m to add seven points.

Both Alfreda Steele and Jacious Sears qualified for the 100m final with two top five times. Steele’s time of 11.36 seconds ranked the as the second-fastest on the day while Sears’ time of 11.47 was fourth.

All three Miami women qualified for the 100m hurdles final with Tiara McMinn and Atherley taking the top two times in the event. McMinn’s posted the fastest time at 13.06 seconds followed by Atherley’s 13.15. Lauryn Harris came in seventh at 13.50 seconds.

Moriah Oliveira was the lone Cane to qualify for the 400m with her time of 54.34 seconds, while Kayla Johnson’s time of 2:06.03 in the 800m finished sixth.

On the men’s side, Russell Robinson scored five points for the men’s team with a fourth-place finish in the triple jump with a mark of 15.61m. Kevin Snyder finished ninth at 15.06m.

Two men advanced to Saturday’s finals as Xavier Coakley ran the sixth-fastest time at 14.23 seconds, while Oskars Bambals posted the fifth-fastest time in the 800m at 1:50.17.

After two days, the women’s team is in eighth with 27 points while the men are in ninth 14 points.