COLUMBIA — The Southeastern Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships opened Thursday at Audrey J. Walton Stadium with the men’s hammer throw, heptathlon, and decathlon.
Florida sophomore Kyle Strawn won the hammer throw, the only final event contested Thursday, recording a throw of 66.90 meters. Strawn barely edged senior teammate Jeremy Postin, who threw 66.83 meters.
“Obviously it’s really exciting to win SEC's,” Strawn said. “I had a goal for myself, and I wanted to throw 65 meters, and I surpassed that.”
Missouri sophomore Brian Duncan threw 61.93 meters to finish fifth, while Tigers senior Jacob Bullinger was 10th.
Strawns' victory helped the Gators move into first place in the early men's team standings with 20 points. Alabama is next with 6 points, followed by Texas A&M (5 points), Missouri (4), Tennessee (3) and LSU (1).
Competition in the heptathlon and decathlon began two hours later than scheduled because of rain.
Arkansas’ Makeba Alcide leads the heptathlon after the first four events. She has score of 3,756, which includes an SEC meet record in the women’s high jump at 6 feet, 2 inches. Mississippi State sophomore Erica Bougard (second with 3,555 points) also impressed in the first day of the heptathlon, winning the 200 meters and 100-meter hurdles and placing second in the high jump.
Georgia sophomore Garrett Scantling, who won the 400 meters, shot put and high jump and was second in the 100 meters, paced the men in the first day of the decathlon. Through the first five events, he has 4,156 points.
Missouri's Ser Whitaker is in fifth in the current decathlon standings with 3,778 points.
Competition continues Friday starting with the decathlon at 11 a.m. Missouri redshirt sophomore Kearsten Peoples, ranked sixth in the SEC, will compete in the women's hammer throw at 2 p.m. Missouri school record holder Max Storms will compete in the 10,000-meter race at 8:05 p.m.
Supervising editor is Grant Hodder.