Roundup: Strawn captures SEC title in hammer throw


Published: Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 10:00 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, May 9, 2013 at 11:54 p.m.

The Gator men scored 20 points on the opening day of competition at the 2013 Southeastern Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships, courtesy of an impressive showing in the men's hammer throw at the Audrey J. Walton Stadium on the campus of the University of Missouri.

Sophomore Kyle Strawn took home the SEC men's hammer throw crown, tossing a new personal best of 66.90m/219-6 to best his teammate and 2012 champion in the event, Jeremy Postin. Postin nearly matched Strawn, throwing 66.83m/219-3 to claim the runner-up spot with his best throw of the day just three inches short of Strawn's effort.

“Obviously it's really exciting to win SECs,” Strawn said. “Even though I grew up in California, I've always been a Gator fan and it means a lot to me to wear this uniform. I had a goal for myself and I wanted to throw 65 meters and I surpassed that.

“It's awesome to compete against these guys every day and it's really important for us to get these points early.”

Along with Strawn and Postin, Gator teammates David Levin and David Triassi advanced to the finals of the men's hammer throw. Levin

scored two points for the Gators with his seventhplace throw of 59.57m/195-5.

“I can't begin to say how proud I am of the hammer throwers as a group and the work they've done with Coach (Steve) Lemke, Florida head coach Mike Holloway said. “For Kyle to win the hammer throw, that's an unbelievable accomplishment for him.”

On the women's side, junior Lorraine Graham sits third in the women's heptathlon after four events, putting up four personal bests on Thursday after a two-hour rain delay deferred the start of the meet.

WOMEN'S GOLF: At Norman, Okla., getting career-low scores from senior Mia Piccio and junior Elcin Ulu, fifth-ranked Florida was able to jump out to a one-stroke lead after the first round of the NCAA Central Regional. Piccio tied her career-best with a three-under (69), while Ulu went one stroke better to lead UF with a four-under (68). Ulu also sits in third place on the individual board, trailing only Emily Collins of Oklahoma while Piccio is in a six-way tie for third.

As a team, the Gators shot a score of 282 (-6) to lead second-place Oklahoma by one shot, its lowest first round score in an NCAA regional since shooting 284 (-4) as a team in 2010. It's also Florida's lowest score for a first round in any tournament this year as three Gators shot under par for the day. Along with Piccio and Ulu, freshman Ursa Orehek (Domzale, Slovenia) was able to card three birdies and only two bogeys en route to a one-under (71), which ties for her season-best.

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