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Five SEC titles on final day enable Aggie men to place second, women third

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Texas A&M challenged for both team titles on the final day of the SEC Championships as they collected five gold, three silver and a bronze medal at Tom Black Stadium.

The Aggie men scored 100 points to place second, while the women totaled 79.5 points to finish third. Florida claimed both team titles, with the men winning with 111 and the women 91 points. Arkansas (99) finished third in the men’s team chase with Alabama (97.66) fourth. LSU (88.5) was the women’s runner-up while host Tennessee (78) finished fourth.

“It was a really close finish for both team championships,” said Texas A&M head coach Pat Henry. “You go through that many events and we are within 11 points of each other for the men’s title and the ladies race was close as well all the way through. It was just a great track meet and I’m extremely proud of the group.

“We can always go back and say if we had done this or that, but there are no ifs. We got beat today, but I’m proud of the group. I’m probably more pleased with how I think we can look at the NCAA meet this year. I think we’ll have an opportunity to do very well.”

Victories on the final day of the conference meet were attained by Audie Wyatt (pole vault), Sammy Watson (800m), Devin Dixon (800m), Tahar Triki (triple jump) and the men’s 4×400 relay. Silver medals went to Jacob Wooten (pole vault), Jazmine Fray (800m) and Infinite Tucker (400m hurdles). Tyra Gittens (high jump) earned a bronze medal to total 20 points for the Aggie women on the weekend.

Wyatt and Wooten totaled 18 points in the pole vault with a 1-2 finish. Wyatt defended his title by clearing 18-2 ½ (5.55) as Wooten challenged with a sore wrist to clear 17-8 ½ (5.40). Gittens cleared 5-10 ¾ (1.80) for third place in the high jump.

In the women’s 800, the Aggie trio in the final combined to score 22 points. Watson claimed the victory in 2:03.37 to complete her sweep of SEC titles after winning the indoor title earlier this season as Fray, the defending conference champion, finished second in 2:03.55. Brittany Parker added a fifth-place performance with a time of 2:07.58.

Dixon turned back the challenge from Mississippi State’s Marco Arop in the men’s 800m to successfully defend his outdoor title and sweep the SEC 800m this season. Arop led the field through 400m in 50.57 with Dixon on his inside shoulder at 50.76. After reaching 600m, Dixon made his move to claim the lead as they reached the homestretch.

Winning in 1:46.76, Dixon put a slight gap on Arop, who placed second in 1:47.45 with South Carolina’s Otis Jones third at 1:47.83.

Opening the triple jump with a mark of 52-11 ½ (16.14) had Triki in second place behind a 53-3 (16.23) from Florida’s KeAndre Bates. Triki moved into the lead in round two with a 53-8 ¼ (16.36), but was passed by another Gator, Clayton Brown (53-10 ½ | 16.42), in round three.

In round four Bates fouled while Brown passed his remaining attempts. Triki, meanwhile, improved to 55-5 ¾ (16.91) to lock down the victory. Bates fouled his remaining two jumps to finish third while Brown was runner-up. The distance for Triki ranks No. 3 on the Aggie all-time list and is the No. 5 performance.

The 400m hurdles offered a surprise finish by Infinite Tucker as he produced a career best time of 49.46 for a silver medal, testing the defending champion Kemar Mowatt of Arkansas, who won a second title in 49.32. Florida’s Cory Poole placed third in 50.09.

The Aggie men wrapped up the meet with a 3:01.17 victory in the 4×400 relay, defending the 2017 title they won while also capturing the relay title for the fourth time in the six years Texas A&M has been in the SEC.

Dixon anchored the relay with a split of 44.5 as he held the Aggies edge over LSU’s Correion Mosby and Florida’s Grant Holloway on the final lap of the race. LSU ran 3:01.98 as runner-up with Florida third in 3:02.17. The first three legs for Texas A&M included Richard Rose (46.3), Bryce Deadmon (45.3), and Ilolo Izu (45.1).

Deadmon ran a career best of 45.71 to finish fifth in the open 400m and ran the lead-off leg of the 4×100 relay that also placed fifth. Joining Deadmon on the sprint relay were Jace Comick, Kyree Johnson and Will Williams.

An additional point for the Aggie men came from Alex Riba as he placed eighth in the 5,000m with a time of 14:13.69 after finishing 10th in the 1,500m at 3:51.12. Cameron Villarreal joined Riba in the 20-person 1,500m final and placed 11th in 3:52.53.

Scoring for the Texas A&M women on the final day of the conference meet included the 4×400 relay, finishing fifth in 3:29.61 with a crew of Julia Madubuike (53.5), Glorilisha Carter (52.4), Fray (51.4) and Watson (52.3). The 4×100 relay placed seventh in 44.22 with Amber Ivy, Jarra Owens, Brenessa Thompson and Madubuike.

Individuals who added to the Aggie women’s team total were Sara Kathryn Stevens, tying for seventh in the pole vault with a clearance of 13-3 ½, Karis Jochen finishing eighth in the 5,000m as she clocked 16:52.97, and Ciynamon Stevenson with an eighth place result in the triple jump as she set a career best of 43-1 ½ (13.14) to move to No. 9 on the Aggie all-time list.

Story courtesy of Texas A&M Athletics

Short URL: http://wtaw.com/?p=124891

Posted by on May 14 2018. Filed under Sports.
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