Smith Named Valley Field Athlete of the Week
May 1, 2012
ST. LOUIS - For her stellar performance this past weekend at the prestigious Drake Relays, junior Brittany Smith was named the Missouri Valley Conference Female Field Athlete of the Week by the league office Tuesday.
Competing head-to-head against the top-10 best throwers in the nation, the four-time All-American took home two second-place finishes and a seventh, en route to earning her second athlete of the week honor this outdoor season. In the process, she also managed to break her previous Illinois State record in the hammer set just last week.
Against the defending NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Champion in the shot put, Tia Brooks of Oklahoma, Smith finished with a mark of 57-05.00, good enough for second place and a full foot further than MVC foe Jeneva McCall of Southern Illinois. With a short rest between competitions, Smith then faced-off against the same field in the discus throw, where she finished seventh with a distance of 171-10, again a full foot further than McCall, sweeping her as the top MVC performer on the day.
On the final day of competition, Smith took to the start of the hammer competition, throwing a staggering 214-02, five feet further than her previous best and school record, claiming second in the event. As it stands, the Oak Park, Ill., native ranks third in the nation in the shot put, first in the MVC, and top-10 in her other two disciplines (DT-10th, HT-6th). She has hit the Olympic trials A standard in the shot put (17.90m/58-08.75) and the provisional B standard in the hammer throw (64.00m/210-00), which allows her to compete for a spot on the United States Olympic team at the end of June.
Smith and the rest of the Redbirds return to action this weekend in Bloomington, Ind., at the Billy Hayes Invitational. This will serve as the final tune up meet before the 2012 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships the following weekend in Wichita, Kan. Fans can follow Smith and rest of the Illinois State men’s and women’s track and field teams online or via Twitter at @ISURedbirds or @ISU_Track_XC.
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