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A&M track and field preps for 2014 SEC championships

Published: Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Updated: Friday, February 28, 2014 00:02

pole vault

Roger Zhang

Clifton Harlin, senior pole vaulter, competes in the Aggie Invitational

Texas A&M will be hosting its first SEC Indoor Track and Field Championship starting Thursday at Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium. Seven of the SEC men’s and eight of the women’s teams competing in the three-day event are ranked among the top-25 teams in the nation, according to the national team computer rankings released by the coaches association.

For the men’s field, the top three schools in the nation belong to the SEC. Defending SEC champion Arkansas is ranked No. 1, followed by No. 2 Florida and No. 3 Texas A&M. 

In the women’s field, five of the top-10 teams are SEC schools. Leading the way is No. 2 Florida followed by No. 3 Texas A&M, defending indoor champions No. 4 Arkansas, No. 6 Kentucky and No. 7 Georgia. 

“It’s a great venue for this competition,” said A&M head coach Pat Henry. “This is the best indoor conference championship in the United States and it’ll be one of the best track meets of the year. It’s great that it’s here in College Station and I think we have a group here on campus along with our volunteer people who are really looking forward to hosting this championship.”

Arkansas men and women will be defending both SEC Indoor team titles after a sweep on their home track last season.

“We are looking forward to the beginning of our championship track and field season,” said Chris Bucknam, Arkansas men’s head coach. “The SEC meet is truly one of the best, if not the best team competition in track and field. The atmosphere surrounding all of these great programs going head to head is unmatched.”

Deon Lendore is representing Texas A&M as a defending champion in the 400.

For the women, Texas A&M’s LaQue Moen-Davis is the defending champion in the triple jump. Seven Aggie women are returning medalists, four silver and three bronze.

Lendore and Florida’s Arman Hall will likely face off in the 400 and the 4x400 relay. Each has recorded a best of 20.68 in the 200 this indoor season. In the Arkansas Razorback Invitational earlier this season, they were separated by just 0.16 of a second in the 400. Lendore is currently ranked second in the world in 400 meters with a 45.47. Hall ranks third with a 45.63.

“We’re extremely excited about the upcoming SEC Indoor Championships,” said Mike Holloway, Florida head coach. “We compete in arguably the best conference in the country with world-class student-athletes and great coaches, which will make for an exciting three days of competition coming up at a great facility in College Station.”

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