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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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Track teams hit the road for Arkansas

The Texas A&M track team (women No. 3, men No. 4) travels to Fayetteville, Arkansas, Friday for the Razorback Invitational. The Aggies are hoping to ride the wave of momentum they generated last weekend on their home track, where they captured first place in 17 of the 30 total events in the Texas A&M Quadrangular Dual Meet.
“We took a good step forward,” said Texas A&M’s head track coach Pat Henry. “We did some things we needed to do last weekend. We needed to see things happen out of specific individuals. We needed to see where Bralon Taplin was. Bralon needed that opportunity to be on that stage at that point to test himself, and the meet gave him that opportunity. That’s just one example. There was a number of people that were the same way.”
Taplin, this week’s SEC Sprinter of the Week, owned the stage and made the most of his opportunity en route to a 45.78 second run in the 400 meters. That mark is the best time posted in the young 2015 indoor track season, and the third-fastest in school history. Taplin also anchored the 4×400 relay team that took first with a time of 3:07.28. Texas A&M may need another round of record-shattering performances from Taplin and others if they want to stand out in a competitive field of 14.
“If you look at the rankings, this is probably one of the better meets this year even though its only the third or fourth meet of the season,” Henry said. “It brings together a tremendous group of institutions and great track programs. Five or six of the teams are ranked in the top 10.”
There are five squads that come into the Arkansas Invitational with a top 10 ranking — Florida (women No. 1, men No. 2), LSU (men No. 9), and host Arkansas (women No. 5, men No. 3). With the SEC indoor championships only three weeks away, A&M will get its first look at some of the top-level competition it has to look forward to in the conference.
“People talk about the SEC’s dominance in all sports,” Henry said. “But we’ve won more national championships in track than anything else. It’s the most dominated sport in the United States. It’s also the toughest sport in the SEC to win a conference championship in.”
The Arkansas Invitational Meet is a two-day event that kicks off at 11 a.m. Friday with the women’s pentathlon and runs until 8:15 p.m. Saturday’s competition will run from 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. A full list of events can be found on Arkansas’ team website. The meet will be broadcast on SEC Network+, which can be accessed via the Watch ESPN app.

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