NEW ORLEANS – Following the impressive performance by Texas A&M junior Olivia Ekponé during the SEC Championships in Lexington, Kentucky, which included sweeping the 100 and 200 meter titles and anchoring the winning 4x400 relay, she was named co-National Athlete of the Week by the United States Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
Ekponé shared the weekly national honor with Courtney Okolo of Texas , who set a collegiate record of 50.03 in winning the 400 meters at the Big 12 Championships in Lubbock.
At the SEC Championships, Ekponé blistered the women’s sprint field in setting career best times of 11.11 in the 100 meters and 22.23 in the 200 meters. Her 11.11 ranks No. 3 on the Texas A&M all-time list and equals the fastest collegiate time this season under wind-legal conditions.
In addition to breaking the Texas A&M school record and SEC Championship record with her 22.23 in the 200, Ekponé set the world leading time for 2014 and recorded the fastest collegiate time ever into a headwind. The previous best time of 22.29 was set in 1989 by Nebraska’s Merlene Ottey during the prelims at the NCAA Championships in Provo, Utah.
Ekponé closed out her sterling SEC performance, in which she earned the Commissioner’s Trophy as the women’s high-point scorer (22.5 points), with a 49.9 anchor leg split on the 4x400 relay. Ekponé moved the Aggies from third to first as she passed Florida and Arkansas to deliver a victory in 3:28.59.
Updated national team computer rankings from USTFCCCA had the Texas A&M men remaining in the No. 2 position while the Aggie women stayed in the No. 4 spot.
Florida remains No. 1 in the men’s rankings over Texas A&M, Oregon, Arkansas, Texas Tech, Georgia, Texas, LSU, Oklahoma State and BYU among the top 10. Texas women moved into the No. 1 position with Florida dropping back to No. 2 with Oregon staying at No. 3. Behind the Aggie women in the No. 4 spot are Kentucky, LSU, Georgia, Arkansas, USC and Florida State among the top 10.
Next for Texas A&M is the NCAA West Preliminary rounds in Fayetteville, Arkansas from Thursday, May 29 to Saturday, May 31.