BIRMINGHAM – Another pair of Aggies were selected for SEC Runner of the Week honors following the Penn Relays performances by Wayne Davis II and Olivia Ekponé, who each defended individual titles in the 120th edition of the famed meet.
Competing in front of a three-day crowd that numbered 108,660 fans in historic Franklin Field, Davis won his second title in the 110 hurdles with a 13.50 while Ekponé led an A&M 1-2 finish in defending her title with a career best of 11.23 seconds as teammate Aaliyah Brown ran 11.34 for the runner-up position.
Ekponé also ran on three Aggie relays, as she was part of winning efforts in the 4x100 and 4x200 as well a third-place finish in the 4x400. Texas A&M ran a U.S. and collegiate leading 43.11 seconds in winning a sixth consecutive Penn Relays 4x100 title with Ekponé running the anchor leg.
In the 4x200 the Aggies recorded the fastest qualifying time in Penn Relays history with a 1:30.61 in the prelims. In winning the final with a 1:30.21 win over Texas (1:30.26), South Carolina (1:33.00) and Penn State (1:33.09), A&M set a world leading time and the seventh fastest collegiate time in history. It was the sixth win for the Aggies in the 4x200 over the past seven years.
Ekponé ran the third leg in both the prelim and final of the 4x200. She ran the first leg of the 4x400 with a 53.6 split as the Aggies placed third in 3:29.96.
Over the past three seasons Ekponé has claimed eight Penn Relay watches for victories in the meet. The women’s record at Penn is 10 watches set by Muna Lee of LSU. As a freshman in 2012 Ekponé was a member of winning efforts in the 4x100 and 4x400. In her sophomore season in 2013 she won the 100 meters and was part of winning relays in the 4x100 and 4x200. As a junior this season Ekponé repeated her three victories in the same events.
In defending his hurdle title at Penn, Davis added to the Aggie history in the event as well. Davis is the first hurdler to win consecutive Penn Relays titles since Jason Richardson of South Carolina in 2008-09. His time of 13.50 was the 11th fastest in meet history and the second best winning mark since 2001.
Davis claimed the sixth Penn Relays hurdle title by a trio of Texas A&M hurdlers, joining Larry Wade (1995, 97-98) and Kris Allen (2001). The Aggies six titles in the event ranks second best in Penn Relays history, tied with Penn State, who last won in 1976, and just one behind the seven attained by Dartmouth, whose last title won was in 1952.
The 2013 SEC and NCAA champion in the 110 hurdles, Davis is undefeated in his senior campaign with victories claimed at Texas Relays (13.45w), Stanford Invitational (13.50), LSU Alumni Gold (13.45w) and Penn Relays.