May 12, 2012
New Orleans - Junior Clayton Chaney captured the grueling decathlon title at the 2012 Conference USA Outdoor Track & Field Championship Saturday at Tad Gormely Stadium.
Chaney tallied a career-high 7,475 points, which is the third-highest point total in Rice history. Only Ryan Harlan (8,171; 2004) and Philip Adam (7,514; 2011) have scored higher. A Rice Owl has now won the last two C-USA decathlon titles. Philip Adam scored his career-high in winning the decathlon in 2011.
"Clayton Chaney overcame huge weather delays and bad weather conditions to do more than just capture the decathlon title, he may have earned a spot in the NCAA finals for the event," exclaimed head coach Jon Warren. "The score he posted is very impressive and it was great, great day for him.
"Chris Sanders' PB and third-place finish was almost as impressive and he was literally one second away from second place. He fought through tough conditions and tough competition to place phenomenally well for a freshman."
Chris Sanders placed third with 6,628 points, just behind Memphis' Marc Klaschka's 6,636 points.
Chaney also captured the 2012 C-USA Indoor heptathlon gold medal as he earned the C-USA Indoor Field Athlete of the Year accolade.
The Owls had three runners place in the top-eight for the 3000m steeplechase. Travis Roberts led Rice in fourth with a season-fast time of 9:08.11. James llamas ran sixth (9:11.83), while freshman William Firth was seventh (9:16.32).
In the shot put, junior Alexander Zinchenko placed third with a mark of 17.03m/55-10.5.
"Alex did not throw his very best, but he threw well against a very good field," said Warren. "He was a bit disappointed in his result, but I am very proud of him."
The Owls sit in second place with 43 points after six events. Houston leads with 54, while Memphis is third (41).
Fox Sports Network is set to televise Sunday's final events on tape delay.
Saturday Rice Results
15, Will Beasley, 11.40
15, Will Beasley, 22.18
10, Dan Sloat, 1:52.54
110m Hurdles Prelim
9, Lee Johnson, 15.15
3, Alex Zinchenko, 17.03m/55-10.5
Men - Team Scores - 7 Events Scored
1) Houston 54
2) Rice 43
3) Memphis 41
3) UTEP 41
5) Tulsa 32
6) East Carolina 31
7) Southern Miss 30
8) Tulane 1
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