The 2012 Fort Valley State University (FVSU) Track & Field Season came to a close at the conclusion of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championship on May 24-26th. Four Lady Wildcats qualified for the championship and made the journey to Colorado for the national competition which was held at the Neta & Eddie DeRose Thunderbowl on the campus of Colorado State University-Pueblo.
The highlight for the Lady Wildcats in the championship was the performance of junior Portia Wilson. While she would compete in the 4x100 meter relay and the 200 meter dash, her best result was in the 100 meter dash. In the preliminary round, Wilson posted the fourth best time of 11.84. In the finals, she logged a time of 11.66 and finished sixth in the nation in the NCAA Division II Championship.
In the 200 meter dash, Wilson's 18th place finish in the preliminary round with a time of 25.49 was not low enough to qualify for the championship.
The same was true for the FVSU 4x100 Meter Relay Team of freshman Victoria Ingram; Wilson; junior Shankevia Burke; and freshman Shakeyla Faulk. In the preliminary round, the Lady Wildcats posted a time of 46.55. While the time gave them a 10th place finish in the preliminaries, unfortunately, the team did not advance to the final round. Only the top nine finishers advance to the championship race.
In the triple jump, Burke tried to extend the national title for FVSU. With three consecutive national championship titles in the past three years won by former Lady Wildcat Antoinette Oglesby, Burke came up short in her bid to make it four in a row for FVSU. She finished 13th in the event with a distance of 12.00 meters.
"I am proud of the effort that the ladies gave in the championship and during the season overall, said FVSU Head Coach Ellakisha O'Kelley. Obviously, we would have liked to have more competitors at the nationals and to contend for the team national championship. However, when you consider some of the unique challenges that our program faces, the appearance in this year's nationals really speaks to the character of our student-athletes who continue to rise above circumstances."