BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – To close out the 2014 Samford Stand Alone Multi Competition on Thursday, junior Erica Bougard donned a first-place finish in the pentathlon, while three other Bulldogs earned Top 6 performances in the heptathlon.
Bougard, Mississippi State’s native of Byhalia, Miss., totaled 4,207 points to grab the top spot at the Birmingham CrossPlex. She began her day posting a second-best 8.58 in the 60-meter hurdles. With 1,000 points, Bougard was only two points shy of first heading into the high jump.
There, the pentathlete cleared 5-09.50, just half an inch lower than her personal-best. After adding 928 points to her total, the Lady Bulldog tossed a lifetime-best 38-05.00 in the shot put before leaping 19-08.00 in the long jump. Bougard garnered 1,488 points between those two events, followed by first-place speed of 2:22.38 in the 800-meter run.
With the win, Bougard edged out four Southeastern Conference foes, including pairs of athletes from Ole Miss and Vanderbilt.
“Today was a good day for me,” Bougard said. “It was great to have a huge personal-best in the shot put. I had a lot of fun competing out there and getting back into action.”
Meanwhile, three MSU men found themselves atop the leaderboard in the heptathlon.
Coming into day two of the seven-event competition in sixth place, freshman Zachary Taylor climbed his way into a third-place finish with 4,626 points. Taylor clocked a 10.06 in the 60-meter hurdles, cleared 13-03.00 in the pole vault and ran a 2:44.86 in the 1000-meter run to add 1,978 points to his day-one total.
Finishing in fifth and sixth, respectively, were fellow freshmen Carl Pittman and JaQuarius Wilson. Pittman finished the day with 4,400 points, while Wilson posted 4,350.
Saving his best event for last, Pittman earned 816 points with a second-place finish in the 800-meter run, clocking a speed of 2:45.21. Earlier in the day, he ran 9.23 in the 60-meter hurdles and cleared 12-03.25 in the pole vault.
Wilson picked up from day two with 2,337 points to secure 770 more with a time of 8.89 in the 60-meter hurdles. To close out action, he pole vaulted 11-03.50 before running a 2:49.04 in the 800-meter run.
The Bulldogs will be in action again at the Birmingham CrossPlex on Saturday as they travel back east for the Auburn Indoor Invitational on Jan. 18. For more information on the Maroon and White, follow the team on Twitter (@HailStateTF).