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UK women's, men's teams win 4-by-400 relays

Kentucky took first place in the men's and women's 4-by-400 relays Saturday, the final touches on its annual Rod McCravy Memorial track and field meet in Nutter Fieldhouse.

Western Kentucky got a share of the men's relay, though, as anchor man Ennis Jones came from behind to finish in a dead heat with UK's Sherif Webb.

"I feel real good," said Jones, a senior from Riverside, Calif. "UK is like a rival on the track. I just tried to fight it coming home because I had all that pressure on. I was like 'I have to try to win this with everything.'"

Leaning for the finish line, Jones tumbled to the track.

Webb, who had a half-step lead until Jones pulled even on the final straightaway, couldn't fathom a dead heat.

"I knew it was close, but I don't want to say it was a tie," Webb said. "Like, if you're going to lose, you're going to lose. If you're going to win — I don't like ties, though."

Justin Austin led off for the Cats, followed by Cody Miller, Kwasi Obeng and Webb.

Western went with Gregory Kendall, Terrell McCombs, Torey Womack and Jones.

UK's women weren't as hard pressed.

Jenna Martin, Jazmyn Shorter, Brittany Cabbler and Shiara Robinson combined to run 3:42.76, nearly half a second ahead of Michigan.

UK's other wins came from Precious Nwokey in Friday's pentathlon and Rondel Sorrillo in Saturday's 200 for men.

Sorrillo, an Olympian from Trinidad and Tobago, posted an NCAA-automatic qualifying time of 20.77.

"It felt OK," said Sorrillo, who was trailed by Tennessee's Evander Wells (20.99). "I was relaxed while doing it. First (200-meter) race for the year, so I couldn't be too displeased about it."

UK's 291-meter oval magnifies strategy in the sprint.

"I started well," Sorrillo said. "I just eased up a little bit because I didn't want to have too much (speed) going into the turn and fall like I did last year. So I just did enough to make up the staggers and then ran the rest of the race (under control)."

Sorrillo later ran a 47.5 split on UK's "B" relay.

Nwokey, weight throw-runner-up Kristin Smith and fifth-place shot-putter Ashley Muffet all notched NCAA provisional qualifying marks.

Other men's highlights included a sweep of Friday's weight throw and Saturday's shot put by former Auburn standout Cory Martin, setting records in both. UK's Colin Boevers took second in the shot with a personal-best 57-111/4.

On the women's side, Olympic gold-medalist Dee Dee Trotter scored wins at 200 (24.10) and 400 meters (52.13).

The former Tennessee standout, who continues to train in Knoxville, won Olympic gold as part of the 2004 U.S. 4-by-400 relay. She also placed fifth in the open 400 at Athens. Four years later at Beijing, hampered by a knee injury that eventually required surgery, she was eliminated in the 400-meter semifinals.

Trotter said she had hoped to break 52 seconds Saturday, but her 52.13 was a significant improvement over her 52.80 of a week earlier.

"I think I'm a lot more fit than most of my (pro) competitors will be at this time just because I've taken the route of running at collegiate invitationals," Trotter said.

She's aiming for her third U.S. Indoor title in the 400.

"I plan on doing that," she said, "ultimately going to Worlds in Doha (Qatar), and taking the World Championships by storm."

Beyond this season, the 2012 London Olympics are on Trotter's radar.

"I'm not done yet," she said. "I am going to pursue my own individual gold medal. At the Olympics in '08, I was dealing with my knee. ... I did not get to do what I was ready to do, so I'm not content. I won't be content until I achieve that and bring home a medal from the Olympics and the World Championships."

Southern Illinois also had a pair of double winners.

Jeneva McCall captured Friday's weight throw and Saturday's shot put. Teammate Malaikah Love took Friday's triple jump and Saturday's long jump.

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