Feb. 25, 2018
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Ole Miss men’s and women’s track & field came away with two SEC champions and a handful of medalist finishes at the final day of the 2018 SEC Indoor Championships at Texas A&M on Sunday.
Ole Miss finished seventh in women’s competition with 42 points, and the men tied for ninth with No. 23 South Carolina at 34 points. No. 1 Arkansas won the women’s title for the fourth straight season, and No. 8 Alabama took the men’s title in an upset – their first indoor title since 1972.
Leading the way for the Ole Miss women was senior Janeah Stewart, who was awarded a share of the Cliff Harper Trophy after tying with Georgia’s Keturah Orji for the most points in the field events with 18.
For Stewart, 10 of those points came this evening with her second-straight SEC title in the women’s weight throw. Stewart, who entered ranked No. 2 nationally and No. 4 all-time in the NCAA, went wire-to-wire for the win, ending with a new facility record on her sixth and final toss of 23.06m (75-08.00). This is the first time an SEC athlete has went back-to-back in the women’s weight since 2013 and 2014 when LSU’s Denise Hilton took the titles.
Freshman Shey Taiwo also scored in the event in fifth in her first collegiate conference meet, throwing 19.77m (64-10.50).
The most exciting portion of the day for Ole Miss was in the men’s mile final, where senior Sean Tobin and freshman Everett Smulders used great teamwork toward a high Rebel finish. Tobin repeated as the mile champ at 4:07.14, but more importantly he helped bring along the freshman Smulders, who took third place in his first conference meet at 4:07.58.
The duo were near the top of the pack for most of the race, but over the last 400 meters Tobin put on the jets, with Smulders in tow. Tobin clocked a 54.71 split on his final 400, with Smulders not far off at 55.02 over his final quarter-mile.
This is the fourth-straight mile win for the Ole Miss men (Daniel Bulmer, 2015; Robert Domanic, 2016; Sean Tobin, 2017), marking the first time in SEC history that a single school has won the men’s mile at least four years in a row. Tobin is the first to repeat since Kentucky’s Matt Hillenbrand did so in 2013 and 2014.
Tobin was the also the leadoff leg for the Ole Miss men’s distance medley relay, which was going for its fifth-straight conference DMR title. The Rebel quartet of Tobin (1200-meters, 2:58.43), Alvin Westbrook (400-meters, 48.53), Waleed Suliman (800-meters, 1:48.31) and Robert Domanic (1600-meters, 4:01.83) ran a great race, but Arkansas just narrowly edged Domanic at the line by seven hundredths of a second to snare victory away from the Rebels.
Ole Miss finished runner-up for a silver medal at 9:37.08, still the sixth-fastest DMR time in school history.
Also finding their way to the podium on Sunday was junior Maddie McHugh, who used last-minute dramatics once again for a third-place finish in the women’s 800-meter finals. In the prelims yesterday, McHugh just narrowly nudged her way into an auto-qualifier spot after winning Heat Three. Tonight, she did so again, snatching third place with a lean at one hundredth of a second at a season-best 2:06.27. This is the second straight third-place finish for McHugh in the 800 indoors.
Suliman also represented Ole Miss in an 800-meter final, taking fourth in the men’s edition at 1:50.91 for his first-career conference points.
Fellow freshman Clio Ozanne-Jaques continued her impressive first campaign with the Rebels with a fourth-place finish in the women’s 5K at a 13-second PR time of 16:36.69 – the seventh-best in Ole Miss history.
Other scorers on Day Two included: Brian Williams in the men’s shot put (fourth place, 19.10m/62-08.00); the women’s DMR of Kat MacNeal, Orianna Shaw, Maddie McHugh and Anna Braswell (seventh place, 11:31.93, fourth all-time at Ole Miss); Kat MacNeal in the women’s mile (eighth place, 4:50.70); and the women’s 4x400-meter relay of Jolie Carbo, Jasmin Allen, Aisha Newsome and Mercedes Mattix, who ran the fastest time at Ole Miss since 2012 (and sixth-fastest overall) at 3:38.17 to finish eighth overall.
With the regular season now in the rearview, Ole Miss now turns its sights to the NCAA Indoor Championships at Texas A&M on March 9-10. Right now, there are currently three individual entries – senior Lindsey Murray in the pole vault and senior Janeah Stewart in the weight throw and shot put – and one relay, the men’s distance medley relay. Final qualifier lists will be released in the coming days.
Other Rebels in Day Two Competition:
17. Mark Robertson – 14:46.04
Men’s Pole Vault:
9. Cole Colozzo – 4.95m (16-02.75) – SB
15. Peyton Weissmann – 4.80m (15-09.00)
Women’s Triple Jump:
19. Lanae Newsome – 11.99m (39-04.00)
Men’s Triple Jump:
10. Fraquan Gaines – 14.94m (49-00.25)
11. Manny Foster – 14.85m (48-08.75) – PR
15. Allen Gordon – 14.04m (46-00.75)
Women’s Final Team Scores:
1. #1 Arkansas – 108
2. #4 Georgia – 84.5
3. #3 Kentucky – 74
4. #6 LSU – 63
5. #7 Texas A&M – 62
6. #8 Florida – 61
7. Ole Miss – 42
8. #17 Alabama – 37
9. #12 Missouri – 35.5
10. #24 Mississippi State – 31
11. #14 Tennessee – 21
12. South Carolina – 17
13. Auburn – 16
14. Vanderbilt – 11
Men’s Final Team Scores
1. #8 Alabama – 91
2. #3 Arkansas – 88
3. #2 Florida – 83.5
4. #7 Texas A&M – 75.5
5. #5 Georgia – 71
6. #11 Kentucky – 45
7. Tennessee – 44
8. #25 Auburn – 37
9. #23 South Carolina – 34
9. Ole Miss – 34
11. LSU – 25
12. Mississippi State – 25
13. Missouri – 13
Day Two Medalists:
Janeah Stewart – Women’s Weight Throw, 1st Place
Sean Tobin – Men’s Mile, 1st Place
Robert Domanic – Men’s DMR, 2nd Place
Waleed Suliman – Men’s DMR, 2nd Place
Sean Tobin – Men’s DMR, 2nd Place
Alvin Westbrook – Men’s DMR, 2nd Place
Maddie McHugh – Women’s 800-Meter, 3rd Place
Everett Smulders – Men’s Mile, 3rd Place
Other Day Two Scorers:
Clio Ozanne-Jaques – Women’s 5K, 4th Place
Waleed Suliman – Men’s 800-Meter, 4th Place
Brian Williams – Men’s Shot Put, 4th Place
Shey Taiwo – Women’s Weight Throw, 5th Place
Anna Braswell – Women’s DMR, 7th Place
Kat MacNeal – Women’s DMR, 7th Place
Maddie McHugh – Women’s DMR, 7th Place
Orianna Shaw – Women’s DMR, 7th Place
Jasmin Allen – Women’s 4x400-Meter Relay, 8th Place
Jolie Carbo – Women’s 4x400-Meter Relay, 8th Place
Kat MacNeal – Women’s Mile, 8th Place
Mercedes Mattix – Women’s 4x400-Meter Relay, 8th Place
Aisha Newsome – Women’s 4x400-Meter Relay, 8th Place
Day One Medalists:
Janeah Stewart – Women’s Shot Put, 2nd Place
Other Day One Scorers:
Lindsey Murray – Women’s Pole Vault, 4th Place
For more information on Ole Miss Track & Field and Cross Country, follow the Rebels on Twitter (@OleMissTrack), Facebook and Instagram.