Dogs earn medals opening day of SEC Championships

Competition at Ole Miss

Georgia had a throwing duo win silver medals to highlight the opening day of the Southeastern Conference Outdoor Championships at the Ole Miss Track & Field Complex on Thursday.

Senior Alencar Pereira made a five-spot improvement from his 2021 finish at SECs to earn a silver medal in the hammer throw to score the Bulldog men their first points. In one of the day’s final events, senior Ahmed Magour fired out of the gate on his opening javelin throw to earn runner-up honors at his first conference meet.

Following the first of two days, the Bulldog men are in second with 17 points while the Georgia women are in sixth place with nine points. Alabama (29) is atop the men’s leaderboard and the Auburn women (23) are leading the meet.

Other Georgia scorers on Thursday included: Julia Harisay – w. javelin, 4th; Elsie Igberaese – w. hammer throw, 5th; Sam Bowers – m. 10,000 meters, 8th.

Georgia also had four competitors punch their tickets to event finals. Senior Clay Pender, a product of Winder, Ga., ran the sixth-fastest 800m time in school history and best since 2016 to qualify for the 800m final. Junior Matthew Boling made short work of the 200m prelims by qualifying automatically thanks to winning with a facility record 20.24.

Another pair of Bulldog qualifiers came out of the men’s 400m hurdles. Freshman Bryce McCray sped to the sixth-best time in UGA history with a 50.21 and junior Caleb Cavanaugh was right behind his teammate and training partner with a 50.34.

Senior Johannes Erm, who is battling in his first decathlon of the year and first collegiate decathlon since 2019, scored 4,248 points through five events and holds a 182-point lead over Tennessee’s Yariel Soto (4,066). While he finished third at the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships and won the 2019 Nationals, this marks Erm’s first SEC decathlon competition.

When Do The Bulldogs Start Friday?: Erm begins his final five events of the decathlon (110m hurdles, discus, pole vault, javelin, 1500m) on day two at 2:45 p.m. ET. Georgia’s first open event on Friday is the women’s high jump with freshman Elena Kulichenko aiming to score at 6 p.m. The first open event on the track for the Bulldogs is the 100m hurdles with both senior Imani Carothers and freshman Eddiyah Frye set to line up on the starting line.

Where To Catch The SEC Championships: The ESPN broadcast talent includes Dwight Stones, Dan O’Brien, John Anderson and Larra Overton during the meet coverage.

SEC Network+ / SEC Network info:

Day Two – Friday, May 13

SEC Network+ - 2:45-6:45 PM (Stream Only): http://gado.gs/9bf

SEC Network+ - 7:00-10:30 PM (Broadcast): http://gado.gs/9bg

Day Three – Saturday, May 14

SEC Network+ - 1:30-5:45 PM (Stream Only): http://gado.gs/9bh

SEC Network - 6:00-10:00 PM (Broadcast): http://gado.gs/9bi

Live Results: For results throughout the weekend, please visit: http://gado.gs/9bb

The Lowdown: Pereira, a native of Brazil, quickly lifted a throw of 70.28 meters/230 feet, 7 inches on his second attempt in the hammer to finish as the event’s runner-up. This marked the second-best performance of his career after he posted a personal record two weeks ago at the Torrin Lawrence Memorial in Athens. Pereira’s finish gave the Bulldogs eight points.

Magour, a native of Qatar, had his first season with the Bulldogs in 2019 but because of injuries and the pandemic, this season is his first suiting up in the red and black. He watched his opening attempt travel 74.40/244-1 and that was enough to edge everyone in the field except the winner from Mississippi State (DJ Jonsson, 250-7). Magour’s mark is the fifth longest in school history and the best for Georgia since 2011.

Harisay, a Princeton graduate who hails from Athens, Ga., posted a career best in the javelin two weeks ago during the Bulldogs’ sole home meet of the year. On Thursday night, she added nearly 20 feet to that personal record to take fourth. Harisay, who also had two 158-foot throws in her series, sent her second attempt 52.03/170-8, which is No. 6 on UGA’s all-time top-10 list.

Igberaese built up to a personal record of 61.18/200-8 on her third throw to win the opening flight of the women’s hammer and come within an inch of the school’s all-time top-10 list. Positioned fourth going into the final, Igberaese completed the six-throw competition in fifth to score four points for the first time in her career. Charlotte Cattermole-Williams also posted a seasonal best (59.59/195-6) to take 11th.

Running in the final race of the day, Bowers completed his first collegiate 10,000m with a 30:16.85 to score with an eighth-place showing. Hooking on to the lead back from the gun, Bowers hung in 10th place until the 4400m mark and then tucked away in the eighth spot that he kept for the entire second half of the race.

There were also four qualifiers on the first day of action:

  • Pender topped his personal record from earlier this year with a 1:48.01 to take second in his heat and qualify with the sixth-fastest time overall. He is slated to race in the final at 7:55 p.m. on Saturday.
  • Boling clocked his second-fastest time of 2022 to advance in the 200m with a 20.24, passing the 10-year-old facility record by. He will race in the 200m final on day three at 8:35 p.m.
  • McCray and Cavanaugh went to work in the second heat of the 400m hurdles and went 1-2 to automatically push themselves into Saturday’s final at 8:15 p.m. McCray broke 51 seconds for the first time in his career with a 50.21 while Cavanaugh ran 50 seconds for the fourth time this season with a 50.34.

Erm started his dec much like Kyle Garland did during Garland’s record-breaking 10 events last weekend at the USATF Combined Events Championships. Erm shot across the 100m finish line in a personal record 10.50 to position himself in second place by just 12 points.

In the second event, Erm traveled 7.16/23-6 twice to finish second in the event. He stood in second by only seven points going into the third event. Erm won his first event when the shot put arrived thanks to his top performance of the year. He lifted his third and final try 14.60/47-10.75, which put him 85 points ahead in the overall competition.

Erm added 723 more points to his total after clearing the high jump bar at 1.91/6-3.25 on his second attempt. This kept him in the overall lead by 128 points going into the day one finale. Following the lightning delay, Erm returned to the track and approached his career best with a 47.52 in the 400m. This was the fastest time of the meet and gave him a 182-point edge heading into Friday.

In the women’s 800m, sophomore Charlotte Augenstein ran a pair of laps in a personal best 2:10.18 to finish 19th overall. Senior Halle McClintock, who is set to officially earn a Master’s degree on Friday, was 16th after registering a 2:08.15.

Where To Find Bulldogs News: Results and recaps from the SEC Outdoor Championships will be found at georgiadogs.com. News and updates from Georgia’s track and field and cross country teams are always located on Twitter/Instagram at @UGATrack.

SEC Scorers

Name Event Mark (Place)

Alencar Pereira M. Hammer Throw 70.28/230-7 (2nd)

Ahmed Magour M. Javelin 74.40/244-1 (2nd)

Julia Harisay W. Javelin *52.03/170-8 (4th)

Elsie Igberaese W. Hammer Throw *61.18/200-8 (5th)

Sam Bowers M. 10,000m *30:16.85 (8th)

*personal record

SEC Qualifiers

Name Event Mark (Place)

Matthew Boling M. 200m ^20.24 (1st)

Bryce McCray M. 400mH *50.21 (5th)

Caleb Cavanaugh M. 400mH 50.34 (6th)

Clay Pender M. 800m *1:48.01 (T-6th)

^facility record

Decathlon

Johannees Erm 100m LJ SP HJ 400m Day1

*10.50 7.16/23-6 14.60/47-10.75 1.91/6-3.25 47.52 4,248 pts.

110mH Discus PV Javelin 1500m TOTAL

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