Ames, Iowa – Saving the best for last, Allen Eke, Alex Deir, Ethan Baker and Brandon Doughty posted a 9:45.32 in the distance medley relay to add another DMR title in the final event of day one at the Big 12 Indoor Championships. OU won the men's DMR a year ago. Baker was the only Sooner to run on both championship relays.
“This feels fantastic,” said Baker. “This year it means a lot with it being us young guys who are coming up. It just means so much to be able to do this.”
“Winning a championship is rare,” explained head coach Jim Vanhootegem. “Anytime you win a championship that is wonderful. This is a great group of guys and you can see the togetherness of this group and the team was really supporting them. It was great to finish out this first day with a championship.”
Molly Williams, Daunicia Demerson, Marissa Codispodi and Bryce Perry finished seventh in the DMR for the OU women, completing the race in a time of 11:49.79.
Only a handful of track events had final rounds on Friday, but junior Abbabiya Simbassa took advantage of one that did, finishing third in the 5,000-meter run with a time of 14:14.06.
The Sooner men are fourth after the first day's limited number of finals and the women are seventh.
The first day was for field events, and, to no one’s surprise, the women’s weight throw was a highlight for the Sooners. OU took three of the top five spots as each Sooner recorded a PR and one, Rylee Rackley, extended her school record to 63-0.00. That effort gave her second place. Julia Reedy finished fourth and improved her all-time mark to 61-02.75. Sarah Tolson, who holds the fourth best program mark, closed out the group’s impressive day with a fifth-place finish and a PR of 60-05.25.
“They gave us a huge boost,” VanHootegem said. “We have a very young women’s team, so to come through with those points in that event, that is huge for our group. It was fun to watch.”
The weight throw was productive for the men as well with Charles Nguyen finishing eighth. He was the first Sooner to produce points in the meet.
Nolan Hay placed in the top five in the long jump for the third time this season, finishing fourth in the event. The freshman jumped a personal best of 24-02.25.
Oklahoma received points from both the men’s and women’s pole vault, putting two athletes on the podium. On the women’s side, Emily Savage tied for eighth after clearing a height of 11-11.75 while Everette Favor placed eighth for the men with a height of 16-06.75. Tanner Callihan finished ninth in the event, just out of scoring, with a personal best of 16-06.75.
The Sooners advanced 10 runners to Saturday's finals and four improved personal bests to advance.
In the mile run, Dylan Blankenbaker (4:15.07) and Alex Deir (4:11.31) finished second and third, respectively, in the prelims to advance to tomorrow’s finals.
Georgina Tamez Reyna (8.70) and Matthias Wicks advanced to the finals in the women’s and men’s 60-meter hurdles. A 7.98 by Wicks is a PR for the senior.
Ethan Baker set a personal record of 47.37 in the 400-meter dash en route to a second-place finish in his heat and a spot to the finals tomorrow.
Jacob Burcham and Kelsey McKee advanced in the 1,000-meter run. Burcham won his heat with a time of 2:26.85 while McKee improved her career best mark in the event, finishing in 2:53.67.
Malcolm Wankel and Allen Eke took care of business in the men’s 800-meter run prelims to advance to the final race. Eke crossed the finish line with a 1:52.00 and Wankel recorded a 1:52.03.
Waymon Storey Jr. advanced in the men’s 200-meter dash, finishing first in his heat with a time of 21.27.
“I am very pleased with today,” said VanHootegem. “I’m not only pleased with the placements and qualifiers that we had, but the efforts across the board.”
Competition resumes Saturday at the Lied Recreation Center with field events beginning at noon CT, while track events start at 1:30 p.m. CT.
TEAM STANDINGS AT THE CONCLUSION OF DAY ONE
1. Okla. State (39), 2. Kansas State (33), 3. Texas Tech (26), 4. Oklahoma (23), 5. Texas (22), 6. Kansas (19), 7. Iowa State (15), 8. Texas Christian (14), 9. Baylor (4)
1. Kansas State (38), 1. Texas (38), 3. Iowa State (29), 4. Baylor (27), 5. Texas Tech (25.5.), 6. Kansas (25), 7. Oklahoma (19.5), 8. Okla. State (12), 8. Texas Christian (12), 10. West Virginia (8)