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Women's Track Set For BIG EAST Indoor Championships

STORRS, Conn. (February 15, 2007) - The University of Connecticut Women's Track and Field team is set to take part in the 2007 BIG EAST Indoor Track and Field Championship held at the Athletics Field House on the campus of the University of Akron in Ohio.

After six meets to prepare and qualify, 19 Huskies will take part in the two-day championships.

"As we look to our championship season, the BIG EAST looms as the most significant challenge," head coach Bill Morgan said. "It is one of the finest in the country, allowing us an environment to maximize our talents. Overall we are physically in a good place and mentally in an even better position to make things happen.  The young ladies are relaxed and fully aware that each member can score points.  This is crucial as you look at sixteen teams vying for the top spot."

The competition begins with pentathlete Tamara Highsmith (East Haven, Conn.) – presently ranked third in the conference with 10 athletes having attained the ECAC qualifier and 5 of those nationally ranked – an impressive field," Morgan said.

Looking to defend her BIG EAST title in the 60m from a year ago is sophomore Jessi Foreman (Wayland, Mass.). She currently owns the fastest time in the conference with a mark of 7.48.

Sophomore Mandela Graves-Fulgham (Shutesbury, Mass.) is coming off a record-breaking performance in the 400m last weekend at the St. Valentine Invitational. She set the new school record with a time of 54.72, which also ranks tops in conference times this season.

The 4x400 relay team also set a school record last weekend at the St. Valentine Invitational. Graves-Fulgham, sophomore Alyssa Evering (Bel Air, Md.), freshmen Chanell Smith (Bronx, N.Y.) and Phylicia George (Markham, Ontario) combined for a time of 3:44.02.

Freshman Tynisha McMillian (Stamford, Conn.) will take part in her first BIG EAST Championships after posting impressive performances in the shot put earlier this season. With an NCAA Provisional distance of 15.40m, McMillian's mark stands at the top of the BIG EAST this season.

"Sprinters Jessi Foreman, last years BIG EAST Champion, and the 400m duo of Alyssa Evering and Mandela Graves-Fulgham, bring top rankings into the meet along with froshman putter Tynisha McMillian," Morgan said. "In the end we will address the competition as we always do – with great confidence – we will see what happens from there."

The two-day event will begin at 11:00 a.m. ET on Saturday, Feb. 17, with events slated to continue through 5:40 p.m. ET. Sunday's events will begin at 8:30 a.m., and the awards ceremony at 3:00 p.m. ET will conclude the weekend.

Up to the minute results can be found throughout the meet at