BATON ROUGE – Texas A&M men won the LSU Invitational while the Aggie women finished second Saturday at Bernie Moore Stadium as the squad totaled 10 victories on the day in their final meet prior to the SEC Championships in mid-May.
In the men’s team score at the five-team LSU Invitational, A&M totaled 172 points over LSU (155.5), Mississippi (115.5), Florida (102) and Miami (26). The women’s team score had LSU on top with 154 points over the Aggies (144.5), Florida (103), Miami (81) and Mississippi (69.5).
“We’re in the middle of finals and we stepped sideways with some people while others were able to step forward,” said Texas A&M head coach Pat Henry. “We didn’t have many people that went backwards on us today.
“As important as anything we’re leaving here healthy. We didn’t get anyone hurt today and that was the exception as we saw a couple of teams who had some people get hurt. You don’t want to hurt anyone at this time of the year if you can help it.”
Wayne Davis II won the 110 hurdles in a wind-aided 13.24 seconds as he remained undefeated this season through five finals in claiming a victory over his rival, Eddie Lovett of Florida, and posting the top collegiate time in the collegiate ranks this season.
“I’m happy about the race, but I’m still not giving myself the credit of a time that fast because of the wind,” noted Davis. “I know that whatever I run with the wind I can run without it. It’s just a matter of me putting together a better race. What I need to do is run harder when I don’t have any wind. I knew I could run faster this weekend, so I’m happy but not overjoyed.”
Running with a tailwind of 4.0 meters per second, Davis bolted from the blocks and had a stride on Lovett midway through the race. As Lovett pressed to challenge Davis, the Gator clipped the second to last hurdle and then crashed through the final barrier.
“The strength of my race last year was the beginning and finish, but the middle portion was something I needed to work on,” noted Davis. “I’m trying to put together all my strengths again. I’ve been working on the middle part of my race as well as the beginning part of my race, since they haven’t been as good as they can be. Usually near the end of the season I put everything together.”
LSU’s tandem of Joshua Lamers and Joshua Thompson ran 13.85 and 13.91 for second and third place, while Lovett finished fourth in 13.94. Aggie Kenneth Minkah ran 14.06 in fifth place.
Davis recorded the second fastest time in A&M history under all-conditions and only trails the windy 13.14 he ran to win the 2013 NCAA title. The time for Davis betters the current collegiate leader of 13.32 by USC’s Aleec Harris and ranks third in the world under all-conditions.
“Wayne had a huge run today and beat some good people in that race,” said Henry. “That was key, it didn’t matter so much what the time was since he was able to beat some people in that race he needed to beat.”
LaQue Moen-Davis won the long jump with a best of 20-7.25 (6.28), which moved her to No. 7 on the Aggie all-time list. Earlier in the meet Moen-Davis lowered her best in the 100 hurdles to 13.26 (0.4 wind) from 13.43 in placing third behind Florida’s Bridgette Owens (12.88) and Jasmin Stowers of LSU (12.96). Shamier Little ran 13.77 to place sixth in the race. The time for Moen-Davis ranks No. 10 on the A&M all-time list.
The Aggie women enjoyed a sweep of the 200 meters as Kamaria Brown won in 23.27 while Little clocked 23.41 and Aaliyah Brown posted a 23.52. Also in the race were A&M’s India Daniels (24.38) and Ibukun Mayungbe (24.69) who placed ninth and 11th in the two-section final.
In the 100 meters Jennifer Madu won the race with an 11.34 (0.6 wind) over former LSU sprinter Muna Lee (11.38) with teammates Ashley Collier (11.52) and Ashton Purvis (11.59) in third and fifth place. Madu also finished fourth in the long jump (19-5.25).
The women’s 4x100 line-up of A. Brown, Olivia Ekpone, K. Brown and Collier sped to a winning time of 43.50 over LSU’s 44.32 and a 44.94 from Miami. In the men’s sprint relay the Aggies led off with Jermaine Davis as Shavez Hart, Prezel Hardy, Jr. and Deon Lendore finished off a 39.21 runner-up finish to Florida’s 38.68 with Mississippi third at 40.08 while LSU did not finish.
“We had to do a little experimenting today, particularly with the men’s 4x100 relay,” noted Henry. “We ran 39.2 with Jermaine in the lead-off position while moving Prezel to third leg. That’s good for the team and we have to know those things.”
In the men’s 100 Hart ran 10.24 (0.7 wind) as the top collegian behind the winning time of 10.20 from Jays Ndure. The field also included Jalen Miller of Mississippi (10.31) in third with Florida’s duo of Antwan Wright (10.37) and Dedric Dukes (10.38) rounding out the top five.
Gregory Coleman won the 400 hurdles with a 51.57 over a 51.85 from LSU’s Quincy Downing with A&M’s Minkah third at 52.50. Janeil Bellille posted a 58.94 for third in the women’s 400 hurdles behind a 57.23 for LSU’s Chanice Chase and a 57.50 by Miami’s Jamika Glades with Aggie Jessica Laseak (1:03.49) in fifth place.
Jill Hydrick claimed A&M’s first win of the day as she set a career best of 164-6 (50.14) in the women’s discus, moving to No. 8 on the Aggie all-time list. Brittany Wooten cleared 13-1 (3.99) for a pole vault victory and had three attempts at a potential career best height of 13-7.25 (4.15).
Devion Harris cleared seven feet in the high jump for the third consecutive meet as his height of 7-0.5 led a 1-2 A&M finish with Tyler Lee (6-9). Chase Wolfle cleared 16-8 for runner-up in the pole vault behind a 17-6.5 for Sam Kendricks of Mississippi.
Aggie Henry Lelei, now a post-collegian, won the 1,500 in 3:44.59 as Cameron Villarreal placed third overall and was the second collegian in a career best of 3:46.96 while Isaac Spencer finished fourth in 3:47.48. Austin Wells won the B race in 3:56.18. Villarreal’s time is No. 10 on the A&M all-time list.
The men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase featured five Aggies. The winner of the race was Colin Stoeber in 9:21.12 with Ryan Teel placing second with a 9:30.74 and Austin Geerts third at 9:30.77. Hanna Galloway, who fell at a water jump, improved her best in the women’s steeplechase by 16 seconds with an 11:41.02 as the runner-up in the race. Juan Castellano placed third in the 5,000 meters with a 15:28.22.
A windy leap of 24-10.5 placed Olabanji Asekun second in the long jump behind a 25-6.75 for Florida’s Marquis Dendy while the Mississippi tandem of Phillip Young (24-6.25) and Ricky Robertson (24-3) placed third and fourth. Jonathan Turner (23-10) placed sixth for A&M while Jeffrey Prothro had a 49-3 for fourth in the triple jump.
Dalton Rowan placed second in the discus with a mark of 184-6 behind a 207-10 from LSU’s Rodney Brown while teammates Jeff Bartlett (170-4) and Ben Skrla (169-10) placed third and fourth. Bartlett was also fourth in the shot put (52-4.75). Austin Cook produced a 190-7 toss in the men’s hammer for sixth place, fourth among collegians in the field.
Brea Garrett placed second in the shot put (50-11.5) while a clearance of 5-7.25 had Kara Erickson placing fourth in the high jump. Melissa Mays led a trio of Aggies in the triple jump, placing fifth at 40-2. Hayley Gooch (39-10.5) and Jordan Wilson (39-6.5) finished seventh and eighth.
Alison Ondrusek improved her best in the hammer twice, throwing 182-2 and then 182-9 to finish fifth while Garrett placed sixth at 174-10. Ondrusek is now the No. 3 performer on the A&M all-time list with performances No. 7 and No. 8. In the javelin Kendall Munoz (145-2) and Krystyn Bradley (144-1) finished fifth and sixth.
A third place effort for Gabby Salazar in the 1,500 had her running a 4:39.73. In the women’s 800 Katie Willard (2:12.08) and Ashley Chamberlain (2:14.46) placed fifth and sixth.
Josh Hernandez placed sixth in the 800 running a 1:50.46 as Gaines Kinsey (1:51.74) and Tarik Tyler (1:52.41) ran career best times to finish third and fourth in the second section and place eighth and ninth overall.
Hector Hernandez ran the 400 this weekend, clocking 47.84 for sixth as Deon Hickey won the second section in 47.88 to placed seventh overall.
The crew of Carlyle Roudette (46.5), H. Hernandez (47.7), J. Hernandez (47.7) and Hickey (47.6) ran 3:09.52 to place third in the 4x400 relay behind LSU (3:07.08) and Mississippi (3:08.38).