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Thursday, March 5, 2009

Thursday Notes

A handful of news and notes from around UGA athletics...

-- University of Georgia freshman sprinter Torrin Lawrence has been named the Southeastern Conference Male Freshman Runner of the Year, according to an announcement by the league office on Thursday.

"With the season Torrin had, it would be surprising if he were not the freshman runner of the year. His first year is one of the most amazing freshman indoor seasons I have ever seen. I think he is undefeated in his two main events as well as being the NCAA and SEC leader in both events for
at least part of the season," said head coach Wayne Norton. "His talent is immense as is the content of his character. I am looking forward to some wonderful things from him over the next three and a half years. And as I told his mother, I am glad he is at the University of Georgia. Our sprint coach, Jon Stuart, continues to recruit the correct people for our program."

-- Ashley Houts scored 22 points to lead four Lady Bulldogs in double figures as Georgia (18-12) defeated Kentucky (15-15), 82-64, in the first round of the SEC Tournament at Alltel Arena on Thursday afternoon.

Georgia shot a scorching 63.3 percent from the field and weathered a 16-0 Kentucky run. After trailing by nine with 16:28 left, the Lady Bulldogs outscored UK 49-22 the rest of the way.

Christy Marshall and Porsha Phillips came off the bench to chip in 17 and 14 points, respectivley, and Angel Robinson contributed a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds.

-- Georgia junior lefthander Alex McRee has been diagnosed with mononucleosis and will miss Saturday’s scheduled start against Quinnipiac. He will be reassessed on a weekly basis.

McRee is 2-0 this season and has yet to allow a run in 10.2 innings. The Gainesville, Ga., native is tied for the team lead with 12 strikeouts.

Sophomore righthander Justin Grimm (0-0, 4.66 ERA) will get the start Saturday against Quinnipiac, and senior lefty Jason Leaver (2-0, 2.00 ERA), who earned the win in Georgia’s 13-6 victory over Wofford, will start on Sunday.

-- University of Georgia linebacker Rennie Curran of Snellville is among 48 players named recently to the Rotary Lombardi Award Preliminary Watch List for 2009.

Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen and those defensive players who line up within five yards of the football. In conference lineups, the SEC and the Big 12 tied for the most players on the list.

Curran, the only Bulldog on the watch list, earned a place by being named to the All-SEC first team in 2008. He led the University of Georgia defensively with 115 tackles in the 2008 season.

-- The Southeastern Conference Presidents and Chancellors announced today that SEC Commissioner Mike Slive and the conference have agreed to a contract extension through July 31, 2012.

"Commissioner Slive has been an absolutely great addition to our conference," said University of Kentucky and Southeastern Conference President Dr. Lee T. Todd. "He is providing great vision and directing the SEC to a new prominence in college athletics. I am thrilled we have locked him in to lead our conference for years to come."

(*All notes courtesy UGA Athletics Dept. and SEC media relations.)

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