Brenau's Ismaelle Occeus, a senior from Lawrenceville, Ga., competes in the women's long jump during the NAIA Track & Field Championships in Gulf Shores, Ala. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)
Brenau University senior Ismaelle Occeus from Lawrenceville, Ga., competes in the women's long jump during the NAIA Track & Field Championships in Gulf Shores, Ala. (AJ Reynolds/Brenau University)

Golden Tigers Compete in Track & Field Nationals

May. 25, 2017
Karen Rosen

GULF SHORES, Ala. – Ismaelle Occeus competed in the final long jump of her collegiate career Thursday night, May 25, as Brenau University opened first-day action at the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics  Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

The senior biology major from Lawrenceville, Georgia, leaped 17 feet, 10-3/4 inches on her first attempt, but did not advance to the final. However, her best event is Friday night’s triple jump, where she is ranked 11th in the 24-woman field. Nine jumpers will advance to that final on the second day of the national competition at Mickey Miller Blackwell Stadium.

Occeus, who has already graduated earlier this month, is competing in her first national championships. “I was hoping to at least get a PR and then just call it a day,” she said, “but I was happy with my first jump.” However, she said she was disappointed when she fouled on her second attempt and then did not improve on her third attempt her third attempt.

“Sadly, it’s my last long jump,” Occeus said.

However, as at least one Georgia woman famously said, tomorrow is another day. Occeus will compete in the triple jump, her best event. Second-year Brenau coach Byron Kramer said she “has a much better chance” to advance to the finals there. 

Golden Tigers teammates Sydney Romine and Cheyenne Wells also will compete in the preliminaries of the 100-meter hurdles Friday afternoon. Romine, a freshman business major from Jasper, Georgia, was the Southern States Athletics Conference champion.  She has a personal best of 14.81 seconds. Wells, a senior accounting major from a Sandy Springs, Georgia, has a best of 14.92 seconds. Only eight of the 34 competitors in that event will advance to the final on Saturday.

“They’re both fairly long shots,” Kramer said, “but they’ve been improving all year, so they have a legitimate chance. One is young and one is fairly new to hurdling.”

The 5-year-old Golden Tigers team from Gainesville, Georgia, captured its fifth straight SSAC championship last month with Romine winning the 100-meter hurdles. She was also the only Golden Tiger to compete at the indoor national championships earlier this year, placing fifth in her heat of the 60-meter hurdles.

NOTE: More photos are available at http://photos.brenau.edu/gallery/Track-Field-at-NAIA-Championships/G0000IyAJfo9Av_0/C0000cwTeTxBAV6U

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