April 15, 2008
Cory Martin and Joanna Atkins of the Auburn track and field team were honored Tuesday by the Southeastern Conference. Martin was named the SEC Male Field Athlete of the Week, while Atkins was given the Women's Female Runner of the Week award.
Martin took over the national lead in the hammer throw from teammate Jacob Dunkleberger, reclaimed the school record in the event from Dunkleberger and met the Olympic Trials "A" qualifying standard Saturday at the Tiger Invitational in Baton Rouge, La. Martin won the event with a mark of 73.07m (239-9), surpassing his previous career best of 71.42m (234-4) and Dunkleberger's school-record mark of 71.87m (235-9). He also surpassed the Olympic Trials "A" qualifying standard by more than a meter.
Martin also competed in the shot put, finishing second to teammate Eric Werskey with a throw of 18.75m (61-6.25), finishing just short of his previous season best of 19.17m that ranks No. 3 in the nation.
Martin is the second consecutive Auburn thrower to be named SEC Male Field Event Athlete of the Week, after Dunkleberger won the honor last week for his winning performance at the Tiger Track Classic that had given him the national lead in the hammer throw.
Atkins clocked her third individual regional qualifying time this year and helped two relays improve their qualifying marks Saturday at the Sun Angel Classic in Tempe, Ariz. She finished third in the Invitational 400m in 52.94, which is the fourth-best mark in Auburn history. Her time broke the Auburn freshman record of 53.24 set by Stephanie Bonner in 1982, and gives her Auburn freshman records in the 100m, 200m and 400m.
Atkins also helped Auburn's 4x100m relay team win the event with a time 44.43, improving their season-best time, and the ran the anchor leg on the 4x400m relay team that finished second in 3:33.36, which ranks fifth in school history and is fifth in the NCAA this year.
Atkins ranks sixth in the NCAA in the 400m, seventh in the 200m and ninth in the 100m, and is the only woman in the NCAA to rank in the top 10 in the nation in all three events. She is also the only woman in the SEC to rank in the top five in the conference in all three events.
It marked the third time in four weeks that Atkins has been honored by the SEC with a weekly award. She was named the conference's Female Freshman of the Week on April 8 and March 25.
The Tigers return to action this Saturday at the LSU Alumni Gold Classic in Baton Rouge.