BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -Sam Kendricks broke his own school record in the pole vault to lead Ole Miss to a strong performance in its first meet of the 2012-13 track & field season, the Panther Indoor Icebreaker hosted by Birmingham-Southern.
A sophomore from Oxford, Miss., Kendricks cleared 17-6.5 on his third attempt at the height, breaking his own school indoor record of 17-4.25 set as a college rookie a year ago. It won the competition and set a new meet record.
"The highlight of the night was Sam Kendricks," said first-year head coach Brian O'Neal. "It was a special night for him. He's set high expectations for himself, and I thought tonight was indicative of his fall preparation."
Ole Miss had good outings from its returnees and newcomers in a meet that included SEC foes Mississippi State and Vanderbilt and regional rivals Memphis and Southern Miss, among others.
"Everyone showed up with the competitive attitude and spirit that we were looking for today," O'Neal added. "When the lights were turned on, we found a few surprises out there, too."
One performance that was a surprise to nobody was Ricky Robertson in the high jump. Competing unattached, the senior six-time All-American cleared 7-4.5, just over an inch off his school indoor record of 7-5.75. That mark of 7-4.5 was a meet and facility record, breaking his own record from last year at the Birmingham CrossPlex.
Also standing out in the men's jumps was senior Morris Kersh, who placed second in the triple jump (48-11.5) and fifth in the long jump (22-9).
Sophomore Robert Semien, who was an SEC All-Freshman performer a year ago, had a strong 60-meter prelim with a time of 8.18. He was in the lead in the finals before bumping into another runner and not being able to finish the race.
A pair of freshman throwers, Onyi Afoaku and Kevin Conway, immediately moved into the top five performers in school history with their weight throws on Saturday. Afoaku had a toss of 54-6, while Conway was right behind him at 54-4.5.
Isiah Young, in his first meet since the 2012 London Olympics, ran a solid 6.69 to place first in the 60-meter prelims but chose not to run the finals. Young has exhausted his collegiate eligibility for indoor track and ran unattached. He will return for his Ole Miss senior season when outdoor competition begins in March.
On the women's side, a freshman sprinter arrived on the scene in a big way on Saturday. Asia Cooper, from Jackson, Miss., set a meet record en route to a victory in the 60 meters in her first ever indoor race at that distance. Her winning time of 7.45 ranks her sixth-best in the event in school history.
Cooper also raced to a fourth-place finish in the 200 (24.80), tops among the Rebels.
THE SEASON: Ole Miss Basketball (2014) - Episode 7 from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.In case you missed it, here are each of the first six episodes of The Season: Ole Miss Basketball:Episode 1 (Season overview, Auburn, Mississippi State games)Episode... read more
In less than a full indoor season with the Ole Miss track & field team, Australian distance runner Daniel Bulmer has had a significant impact on the school record books and set the stage for a lot more to come... read more
What a Win tonight... Very Proud of our team #ProudCoach #Passion #Process #1MISSion-- Matt Insell (@minsell) March 6, 2014 What a great win for our program tonight! This team has come so far! Watch us take on Auburn tomorrow night... read more
Proceeding from 1995 to 1996, we will highlight moment No. 23 in head coach Billy Chadwick's career. This particular moment will accentuate a tremendous individual accomplishment. In 1996, Sweden's Johan Hede became the first Rebel in Ole Miss tennis history... read more
The Ole Miss women's basketball team looks to carry the momentum from a 73-71 overtime win over Auburn on Senior Day this past Sunday into this week's Southeastern Conference Tournament at the Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga. The Rebels are... read more
Ole Miss and Arkansas are both looking to improve their Southeastern Conference standing and possibly play their way into a top-four seed and a double bye to the quarterfinals of the conference tournament next week in Atlanta. The Rebels are... read more
Senior Bo Wallace returns at quarterback and will go through spring drills for the first time since 2012, having missed spring practice last year recovering from offseason shoulder surgery."I feel like strength-wise, I'm a lot better than I was at... read more
Audio of Ole Miss head coach Matt Insell's time on the SEC teleconference Monday as well as audio of Arkansas head coach Tom Collen and Auburn head coach Terri Williams-Flournoy. Ole Miss is the No. 14 seed in this week's... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewFeb. 24-March 2, 2014Baseball- Ole Miss posted four straight walk-off wins this past week on the way to two wins over ULM and a sweep of UCF.- Junior right-handed pitcher Chris Ellis has not allowed... read more
To begin this week, we are ending 1995 for moment No. 24. This moment is another first for the Ole Miss tennis program and is the product of a true collective effort by Coach Chadwick and the Rebels.By now, you... read more
Photo GalleryA total of 25 scouts representing 22 NFL teams were on hand at Ole Miss' annual Pro Day Monday, including former Rebel Von Hutchins, now with the Oakland Raiders organization. Donte Moncrief, who participated in the 2014 NFL Combine,... read more