BATON ROUGE, La. --- Senior Nick Horton of the Tennessee State men's track and field team began the first leg of his post-season competition schedule on Friday competing at the NCAA Mid-East Regional Championships hosted by Louisiana State University. The Second-Team All-OVC selection qualified early in the outdoor season for Regionals in both the 200m and 400m.
Horton was ranked 12th in the Region in the 400m with a time of 46.69, the fastest time in the Ohio Valley Conference. He was seeded in heat one of the preliminaries where he would be running against host-Louisiana State's Kelly Willie, who held the second-fastest time (45.16) in the region coming into this weekend. Also in this heat was Arthur Davis of Mississippi State, who held the region's 10th-best time. Horton, who finished third in the heat and 10th overall with a time of 46.86, was edged by three-tenths of a second from advancing to the finals in the event.
Horton came into the 200m ranked 13th in the region with a time of 20.91. Seeded in the heat two, he faced Davis for the second time that day as well as Arkansas' Wallace Spearmon, who has the sixth-fastest time in the country in the event. He finished fifth in his heat with a time of 21.24, about one second off of the qualifying time for the finals but giving him a 16th-place finish overall.
Horton, a two-time OVC Male Athlete of the Year, will look to shaving seconds off his times in both events to qualify for the 2004 Olympic Trials scheduled for July in Sacramento, Calif.
Complete results of the NCAA Mid-East Regionals can be found by clicking here