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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A&M teams enter national championship as favorites

 
 

Expectations for head coach Pat Henry and the Texas A&M track teams are the highest they’ve been since back-to-back-to-back men’s and women’s national championships from 2009-2011.
Both the No. 1 Aggie men and No. 2
women will compete for the NCAA Championships Wednesday through Saturday at the University of Oregon, the same site where each team claimed its titles in 2010.
“I’m very pleased with the group we have here,” Henry said. “We’re in good shape and in good spirits. I’m just ready to get the competition started. This is a group where we have some people who have been here before and we have a lot of young ones who are excited about being here too. We have a good balance of talent.”
The Aggie men moved up to No. 1 after a strong showing in the NCAA preliminary rounds. A&M jumped over Arkansas and Oregon to take the top spot while former No. 1 Florida fell to No. 4.
The A&M men were led by a school record in the preliminary rounds, as senior javelin thrower Sam Humphreys broke his own record with a throw of 268 feet, 8 inches: the top mark in the preliminaries.
“I really only wanted to do the one-and-done, but I messed up on my first throw,” Humphreys said. “I felt good today and wasn’t expecting that far of a throw. I’m just elated to be going to nationals for a fourth consecutive year. Now I’ll have to see what I can at nationals.”
A&M’s preliminary success was also aided by triple-jumper Dave Brown who won the event with a leap of 53 feet, reaching the Aggie all-time list.
“I was a little nervous coming into the meet because I really wanted to go to nationals to contribute to the team. That’s what this meet is all about,” Brown said. “This past week I was studying film to see what I could do to get better. During this whole meet I did exactly what I needed to do to get better today.”
The A&M women remain No. 2 as No. 1 Kansas kept its first spot. The women’s 4×100 team cruised to a victory in the preliminary round.
The Aggie women will have eight entries in the sprints and hurdles, two relays, three jumpers, one thrower and two in the heptathlon this weekend for a total of 12 women competing.
The A&M men will have 10 entries in the sprints and hurdles, a pair of middle distance runners, three distance races, one relay one jumper and three throwers for a total of 17 competing.
All will combine to form one group looking to set records once again at a familiar venue in Oregon looking to form similar memories to 2010.
“That’s the thing about Eugene, Ore., this is a track capital,” Henry said. “These people know the sport, the athletes and who is good in each event. They want the University of Oregon to win, there is no question about it, and there will be 18,000 to 20,000 people screaming and hollering for Oregon. However, they also recognize and respect the talent from other schools and that is a fun environment.”

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