Provided by South Plains College
LEVELLAND - Seven SPC track and field athletes made announcements regarding their future plans during a 1:30 p.m. ceremony in the T-Club lounge inside the Texan Dome Wednesday.
Head Coach Chris Beene said this might be the best signing class he has had in his eight years at the helm of the Texan and Lady Texan Track and Field programs. Six of the athletes, all of whom signed in the fall, will attend schools in the ultra-successful Southeastern Conference while a recent signee will stay a little closer within the Big 12.
Decked out in LSU apparel, Natoya Goule, Keri Emanuel, and Shana-Gaye Tracey each announced they would be joining the powerful Lady Tiger track and field team next season.
The Lady Tigers will be looking for a third consecutive SEC Championship when they host the conference meet May 10-13 in Baton Rouge. With the firepower of Goule, Emanuel, and Tracey, they are putting themselves in position for another run in 2013 and 2014.
Goule is one of the most accomplished athletes in the history of the NJCAA having won six NJCAA Championships and eight All-America honors as a freshman. She added a cross country championship in the fall and will try to add more titles when South Plains hosts the NJCAA Championships May 15-17.
Additionally, Goule has set seven individual school records and has also been a member of 5 relay school records indoor and outdoor.
Emanuel is the defending NJCAA Outdoor Champion in the long jump and was second in the 2011 indoor triple jump and should be the favorite to win both championships in two weeks as she has soared to new distances, breaking both long and triple jump school records with season bests of 20-09.75 in the long jump and 43-10.00 in the triple jump.
Also attending LSU, Tracey is also a defending NJCAA Champion having come out on top in the 400 meter hurdles a year ago.
One of the newest members to the SEC, Texas A&M, has landed NJCAA 400M hurdle record holder Janeil Bellille. Bellille broke the record during a meet last April contested at Texas Tech, finishing with a time of 55.80 seconds. She earned an All-America award with a second place finish in the 55M hurdles at the 2011 NJCAA Indoor Championships.
Kemoy Campbell and Sparkle McKnight will see a lot of their former teammates as they will be competing for the University of Arkansas, also in the SEC.
McKnight was third in last year's outdoor championship meet in the 400M Dash and currently leads the NJCAA in the event with a time of 53.29 seconds and ranks second behind Bellille in the NJCAA over the 400M Hurdles.
Campbell will be joining a Razorback squad that is back on the rise after finishing second at the recent NCAA Indoor Championships and tied for 10th at the 2011 Outdoor Championship meet and will take versatility and range with him to Fayetteville.
Campbell is a two-time NJCAA Champion and six-time All-America performer for the Texans. Most impressive, however, was his performance at the 2011 NJCAA Outdoor Championships where he won the 800M Run while also finishing second in the 1500M and 5000M Runs.
Amoy Blake chose to not stray to far as she will stay on the South Plains when she attends Texas Tech University next fall. Blake helped the Lady Texan 4x400M Relay team to the NJCAA Championship last May and was also on the runner-up 4x100M Relay team.
Before they move on, all seven athletes have more business to tend to with the rest of their teammates. The track and field teams will compete in their final regular season meet at Texas Tech on Saturday, May 5 before hosting the NJCAA Track and Field Championships May 15-17 at the Texan Track and Field Complex. The Texans will be searching for their sixth consecutive team title while the Lady Texans are aiming for their fourth straight title.