Jan. 11, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Returning to the site of her school-record performance in the weight throw last season, Florida State redshirt junior Briana Cherry-Bronson left little doubt that she can be an All-American contender this indoor season for the Seminoles.
Cherry-Bronson shattered her own school record with a toss of 20.24 meters (66-5) in the season-opening UAB Blazer Invite at the Birmingham Crossplex Arena Friday night. The Naples, Fla. native eclipsed her previous record (19.06m/62-6.50) by nearly four feet on the fifth of six throws; good for a runner-up finish. Her mark would have been good for 10th place at the 2013 NCAA Indoor Championships.
Senior Lakitta Johnson was equally impressive, bettering her previous personal best with a throw of 19.24m (63-1), which was good for a fourth-place finish. Johnson came into the meet ranked fourth all-time among Seminoles (17.95m/58-10.75) and departed with the second-best mark in school history, which also eclipsed the previous school record.
Their performances continued a trend under second-year throws coach Dorian Scott, whose charges now litter the top 10 lists after just one full season on staff.
James Harris delivered the Seminoles their first win of the indoor season as the senior All-American captured the high jump with a leap of 2.23 meters (7-3.75); a mark that should earn him a qualifying spot at the NCAA Indoor Championships in March.
On the women's side, senior Elizabeth Ichite placed fourth in the seldom-contested 300-meter dash (38.59), right behind Kala Funderburk (38.48), a transfer to FSU from Memphis who competed unattached.
Freshman sprint standout Kali Davis-White successfully navigated her FSU debut by advancing to Saturday's final of the 60-meter dash. Davis-White checked in with the ninth-fastest time (7.46) in Seminole history in the section B preliminary round. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla. star was the fastest collegian in her section and placed third overall.
Senior Marecia Pemberton will join her first-year teammate in the section B finals after logging a preliminary round time of 7.55.
In the women's pole vault, freshman Madison Schmidt registered the 10th-best performance in school history in her debut by clearing 3.65 meters (11-11.75). She matched her sophomore teammates Hannah Acton and Karly Jackson as the trio tied for 10th place.
Among the other newcomers to debut in garnet & gold, senior transfer Jonathan Reid made the most of his lone mark in the triple jump (14.78m/48-6) to place fourth overall.
The action concludes Saturday with a host of Seminoles yet to compete. Updates will be made via Twitter @FSU_Track and a complete wrap-up of the meet will follow at www.seminoles.com.