Florida gets off to a solid start

Published: Sunday, January 19, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 19, 2003 at 1:00 a.m.
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Florida's Ahmad Jasmine inches in front of Addias' Lou Bredwood during the 55-meter dash Saturday at the Florida Intercollegiate at the O'Connell Center.

(DARON DEAN/Special to The Sun)
The throwers on the Florida women's track and field team justified their high preseason ranking Saturday.
The Gators dominated the weight throw and shot put in the Florida Intercollegiates at the O'Connell Center.
Florida swept the top six spots in the weight throw, and Jukina Dickerson, Kimberli Barrett and LaQuanda Cotten all threw automatic qualifying distances to place in the top three.
"I'm not really that surprised because we're that good," UF women's coach Tom Jones said. "I'd be a little disappointed if we didn't do that well. Our expectations are very high and they're going to carry it into the conference and NCAA level too."
Dickerson easily won the weight throw with a distance of 66 feet, 8 1/2 inches. Barrett followed with a personal-best toss of 66-4 1/4 and Cotten was third with a distance of 66-11 1/2.
"We're really a competitive group and the last couple of weeks, we've concentrated on coming together and supporting each other," said Dickerson. "This is what we want to do and the only way to get there is by sticking together."
The UF throwers showed as much dominance in the shot put. The top four spots went to the Gators, and all turned in qualifying marks.
Karen Freberg, a transfer from Southern Methodist, won with an automatic mark of 54-1, and Notre Dame transfer Dore DeBartolo was second with a provisional distance of 51-3 1/2. Cotten (50-3 1/2) and Barrett (50-1 1/4) rounded out the top four.
"I felt we competed really well as a team," throws coach Larry Judge said. "For us, we're just rehearsing for the conference. Those kind of sweeps are really what we're trying to get ready for at the conference level."
The UF men also collected qualifying marks in the first meet under first-year UF coach Mike Holloway, who was evaluating the team's competitiveness.
"That's something that's still kind of lingering out there and I told them after the meet that we have got to learn how to compete," Holloway said.
Josh Walker won the 55-meter hurdles with a provisional-qualifying time of 7.24 second, missing the automatic mark by one-hundredth of a second. He was one of four Gators - Paul Brown (7.28), Chris Carswell (7.32) and Rickey Harris (7.37) were the others - to race a provisional time.
"We really wanted to send a message because no one was really talking about us in the preseason," Walker said. "This whole fall, we've been working hard and pushing hard. It's track meet time, so we put everything together and everything came up the way it did."
Other highlights included Ahmad Jasmine's provisionally qualifying in the 55-meter dash. The sophomore's time of 6.26 was second only to former UF star and Olympian John Capel's 6.14.
Jasmine also was the top collegian in the 200, finishing fifth overall with a time of 21.80. Capel won the 200 at 21.04.
The Gators suffered a loss when Moise Joseph pulled out of the 800 about 300 meters into the race.
The All-American junior got spiked on his left foot around the third turn and he ran out the doors next to the track. Trainers immediately tended to Joseph, who will require stitches on his foot.
"He's going to be out for a while, but we're not sure of the extent of it," Holloway said. "We're just going to check with the doctors and see what the trainers tell us. We're going to pray that we get him back for conference. If not, we'll get him back whenever."
Doris Yon can be reached at (352) 374-5052 or yond@gvillesun.com.

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