Track & Field Has Good Performances
One day after 16 Alabama athletes competing set new personal bests, nine more PR outings were posted on Sunday, a major step forward for a young team that features 28 freshmen on the men's roster and 23 female athletes in their first year competing for the Crimson Tide. The Crimson Tide men's team scored 40 points to place seventh in the team standings while the Alabama women scored 25 points to finish 10th in the team race.
"We had an excellent meet," said head coach Dan Waters. "Our team gave us everything they had. At this point in the development of our program, with such a young team with many of our athletes in their first SEC meet, I take a lot of confidence from our performance based on the numerous PRs we had and the excellent competitiveness we showed. We have definitely set a foundation for the future and that is the biggest thing we can take from this meet."
Sunday's action for Alabama was highlighted by a second-place finish in the women's high jump by Krystle Schade who cleared 6 feet, ¼ inch (1.84 meters) and was edged by South Carolina's Jeannelle Scheper who posted a winning height of 6-1 ½ (1.87m). Schade remains among the national leaders in the event and figures to compete against Scheper for national honors again in two weeks at the same facility at the upcoming NCAA Indoor Championships.
Alabama enjoyed several surprisingly strong outings in other events that led to both teams exceeding pre-meet forecasts for total team points and final finish in the team standings. Chief among those was Jonathan Reid's huge PR in the men's triple jump and an almost equally large PR improvement by Robbie Farnham-Rose in the men's mile.
Reid's performance in the triple jump improved his PR by almost nine inches as he leaped 52-3 ¼ (15.93m) to place fifth in a world-class field of competitors. That mark ranks as the sixth-best triple jump in Alabama school history. Farnham-Rose, a freshman from the United Kingdom, shaved several seconds off his PR in the men's mile with a third-place finish in 4:02.34, a time that stands fifth on the UA all-time list. Another PR for the men's team came in the final of the 200-meter dash as sophomore Diondre Batson ran 20.81 to place fourth overall in a time that ranks Batson third on the all-time UA indoor list.
Other team points for the Crimson Tide came from sixth-place finishes by the men's distance medley relay team of Parker Deuel, Dushane Farrier, Robbie Farnham-Rose and Matt Airola in a time of 9:57.17, and a sixth-place finish by the 4x400-meter relay quartet of Joel Lynch, Dwight Davis, Ken Taylor and Diondre Batson in 3:09.72.
The women's team earned points from two finalists in the 800 meters as Yanique Malcolm was sixth in 2:06.87, a PR and the third-fastest time in UA history, and Kimberley Ficenec was eighth in a PR of 2:07.78, fifth on the all-time UA list. Alabama's distance medley relay of Meropi Panagiotou, Dacia Mays, Kimberley Ficenec and Susie Kemper was eighth in 11:32.52.
In the women's 5,000 meters, two Tide athletes achieved PRs despite finishing out of the scoring. Katelyn Greenleaf was 15th in 17:11.89 and Claire Turner was 23rd in 17:30.79.
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