The Alabama men and women posted their best finishes since 1989 and 2006, respectively, at the 2016 Southeastern Conference Track & Field Championships at Alabama’s Sam Bailey Track & Field Complex this weekend.
The men’s team finished third with 88 points, its best finish since coming in third in 1989. The women’s sixth place finish (67.25 points) this week is its best since finishing sixth in 2006. Arkansas and Texas A&M finished first and second in both the men’s and women’s competitions.
There was also exceptional individual success.
The Crimson Tide men’s discus team recorded an historic medals sweep to highlight the Tide’s final day on Saturday. Daniel Haugh, Kord Ferguson, Joe Williams and Hayden Reed finished 1-2-3-5 in the men’s discus as Alabama swept the medals in the event for the first time in school history and won it for the first time since 1987.
“I’m just in shock right now,” Haugh said following the competition. “It was a lot of fun out there competing with each other. This is what we wanted to do and were hoping to do. We all knew we could do something special.”
Highlight for the Bama women was Quanesha Burks successfully defending her championship in the long jump. Burks jumped a season-best 22 feet, 2 ½ inches (6.77 meters), on her second jump to take the medal. The Hartselle native now owns the 10 best long jump marks in Alabama women’s track history and has won six consecutive postseason indoor and outdoor long jump titles dating back to last year’s SEC Outdoor Championships.
“We had a great meet,” Alabama Coach Dan Waters said. “Every athlete that put on an Alabama uniform this weekend competed with great heart and great spirit. I could not be prouder of this team. Whether they made a final, or not, scored a point, or not, this is the kind of championship meet every coach wants to have.”
Behind Arkansas, Texas A&M, and Alabama on the men’s side, it was 4. LSU, 5. Ole Miss. 6. Florida, 7. Georgia, 8. Missouri, 9. Tennessee, 10. Kentucky, 11. South Carolina, 12. Mississippi State, and 13. Auburn. (Vanderbilt does not have a men’s team.) On the women’s side, it was 1. Arkansas, 2. Texas A&M, 3. Kentucky, 4. Tennessee, 5. LSU, 6. Alabama, 7. Florida, 8. Georgia, 9. Mississippi State, 10. Auburn, 11. Ole Miss, 12. Missouri, 13. South Carolina, 14. Vanderbilt.
Alabama will return to action at the NCAA East Regional in Jacksonville, Fla., May 26-28. Qualifiers for the regional will be finalized on Monday. The top 48 in each event in the region will participate in the meet for an opportunity to advance to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships scheduled for June 8-11 at the University of Oregon.