RECAP: Simmons shines in Austin; Takes 4th at Texas Relays

Thursday, March 30, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist || wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

AUSTIN – UT Tyler senior Whitney Simmons finished fourth in the Hammer Throw at the 90th Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays, presented by Spectrum with a top mark of 60.27 meters on Thursday at Mike A. Myers Stadium.

Simmons’ throw came on her first attempt and had her in first place for the moment and secured her spot into the finals. Brooke Anderson would win the event though with a throw of 67.32 meters for Northern Arizona University. The University of Georgia would take second and third with Beatrice Llano throwing 66.55 meters and teammate Asianna Covington finishing third at 60.42 meters.

Simmons took fourth, while Texas A&M senior Alison Ondrusek was fifth (60.14) and Oklahoma’s Ashley Bryant sixth with a throw of 58.33 meters. In the 25-athlete contest, Simmons was the only NCAA Division III competitor and also topped throwers from Purdue, TCU, Texas State, Wichita State, LSU, UTEP, South Florida, Texas and UTSA and Missouri. Constantly improving over her career, Simmons finished sixth at last year’s Texas Relays with a throw of 57.48 meters as a junior after finishing 23rd with a mark of 44.12 meters as a sophomore at the event.

Simmons is the defending NCAA Division III National Champion and came into the Texas Relays having won the first two Outdoor meets of the season in the Hammer along with winning the NCAA DIII Indoor National Weight Throw Championship. Simmons recorded a personal best and the second farthest throw in NCAA DIII history at the Marc Randle Classic three weeks ago with a throw of 62.52 meters and then won last weekend’s Southern Arkansas meet with a distance of 61.35.

Simmons returns to action next weekend at the SFA Skechers Carl Knight Invitational in Nacogdoches.