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

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

The Battalion

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Men’s Texas A&M track and field place seventh at NCAA Champtionships

Photo by Provided by Texas A&M Athletics
Nathan Hite

Texas A&M track and field traveled to Eugene, Oregon this week to compete in the NCAA Championships where the men’s team placed seventh with 29 points. The Aggie men now have 11 consecutive top-ten finishes in the NCAA Championships. Georgia went on to win the meet with 52 points.
The highlight of the week for Texas A&M came from sophomore Tahar Triki on the final day of men’s competition. Triki claimed the triple jump title with a leap of 16.79m, joining Latario Collie as the only other Aggie to win the event at nationals.
Triki led through the first round with a distance of 16.16m, but was passed by several jumpers early in the second round. He soon took the lead back with his 16.79m and did not relinquish the top spot again.
“With the weather, rain and cold conditions, we didn’t search for a good mark,” Triki told “We just searched for a mark that would win the gold medal. It was a really good competition with KeAndre Bates as well as the guys from Texas Tech and TCU. When they passed me in the second round that excited me to do better.”
Earlier in the week, Triki placed eighth in the long jump with a leap of 7.86m, joining Julian Reid as the only Aggies to score points in both the triple jump and long jump at the NCAA outdoor meet. Reid did so in both 2009 and 2011.
“Yesterday, in the long jump, my runway approach was the best it’s been this year,” Triki told “My goal in the long jump was to get a place in the top three, but I wasn’t able to do that since my last step was bad. I will fix it for next year, and I will win both events next year.”
Appearing in its 12th consecutive NCAA final, Texas A&M’s 4×400 relay squad finished runner-up with a U.S. leading time of 2:59.91. USC won the event with a collegiate record breaking time of 2:59.00.
On track for the Aggies were Bryce Deadmon (45.6), Kyree Johnson (45.0), Ilolo Izu (45.42) and Devin Dixon (43.92). Dixon’s split was the fastest ever anchor time by a Texas A&M sprinter, passing Fred Kerley’s times of 43.96 and 43.99 in last year’s NCAA semifinals and final.
Dixon also competed in the 800m where he placed fifth with a time of 1:45.86. The sophomore led the first lap, splitting 51.09, but fell back with 300 meters to go. A final push saw him make up a couple of places to claim his fifth place finish.
On the first day of competition, a pair of Aggies competed in the pole vault. Junior Jacob Wooten placed fourth with a career best height of 5.55m. His previous best of 5.45m came at this meet last year. Wooten’s performance was the best ever by an Aggie vaulter at the NCAA Outdoor meet.
“It’s about time,” Wooten told “I’ve had a little bit of a rough go outdoors and I’m glad I was able to put it together at the outdoor national championships. After my third attempt clearance at 17-10 ½, I knew I really needed to clear 18-2 ½ to score some points. I was in a tie for eighth prior to that, so I was only going to get half a point.”
Senior Audie Wyatt competed alongside Wooten and placed 14th, clearing a height of 5.30m on his second attempt but missed at 5.45m.
Other Aggie competitors included sophomore Infinite Tucker who earned points in the 400m hurdles with a time of 50.76 that placed him in eighth.
Junior Nathan Hite, who was dealing with an injury and did not compete in the final event of the competition, placed 18th in the decathlon with a total of 6,518 points, while sophomore William Petersson placed 13th with a distance of 67.33m in the javelin throw.

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