June 18, 2008
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The University of Alabama women's track and field team will be well represented at this year's USA Junior National Track and Field Championship held in Columbus, OH. Alabama will send three athletes to Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium for the competition that will begin on Friday, June 20 and conclude on Sunday, June 22.
"The important thing for these ladies is they will now have a chance to compete at a national championship as true freshmen and that says a lot about our program," head coach Sandy Fowler said. "They also have a chance of being able to place but the best thing is getting them involved at a national championship at this stage of their careers."
Freshmen Angelica Howard, Meghan Austin and Christina Octavien have all qualified in their respective events. Howard, the leading shot putter for the Crimson Tide will compete in the shot and the hammer throw. Austin will compete in the javelin as she paced the Tide in that event while Octavien will throw the discus.
Howard, who was named to the SEC all-freshman team indoors, continues to impress in the shot put as she has scored in both the indoor and outdoor SEC track and field championships. She has also qualified for the hammer throw. Her best mark in the shot was 48-09.50 and her hammer measurement reached 158-02.
Austin stepped onto the national scene as a freshman by qualifying for the NCAA Mideast Regional in the javelin. Austin garnered all-region and All-SEC freshman honors this year. Her best mark was a throw of 151-06.
Octavien, from Naples, Fla. paced the Crimson Tide in the discus with a throw of 152-00. She recorded the top three discus throws on the season at Alabama. Octavien also was the second best performer for the Crimson Tide in the shot put.
Alabama also qualified freshman distance ace Haley Moody, freshman javelin thrower Rachel Robbs and 100 hurdler Nicole Okolo but they were all scratched from competition.