Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Impressive performance in Seattle puts Tide in top 25

The University of Alabama’s men’s track field squad has vaulted into the top 25 for the first time all season after an impressive outing in Seattle.

The Crimson Tide competed in the Flotrack Husky Classic in Seattle, Wash., Feb. 11-12, where the team captured seven top-10 finishes and numerous personal and school-best performances. With its performance, the Tide jumped from 34 to 19 in the latest United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association poll.

“It was certainly a positive meet; we jumped 15 spots due to our performance,” head coach Harvey Glance said. “It played in our favor and what we’re trying to do for the program.”

In a strong field, the Tide had numerous standouts.

Senior Fred Samoei automatically qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 800 meter with a time of 1:47.41. While this was his first attempt at the 800 meter this season, he set a new personal best and ran the second fastest time in school history.

Continuing his stellar debut season, freshman Kamal Fuller finished first and set a new personal best in the long jump, measuring 24-11.75 feet as well as finishing seventh in the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 8:22. Fellow freshman Dwayne Extol finished seventh in the 400 meter with a time of 48:58.

The high jump witnessed two Tide competitors finishing tied for fifth. Freshman Jonathan Reid and junior Tyler Campbell both cleared 6-9.5 feet.

Capping off the weekend, the Tide 4×400 relay squad Joel Rop, Julius Bor, Samoei and Kirani James missed the NCAA qualifying mark by less than two seconds. Although they did not qualify, they won the 4×400 meter relay and posted the third fastest time in school history at 9:33.81.

Heading into a crucial section of the schedule, Glance noticed his team progressing and improving each week.

“We’re learning how to compete and learning how to run in traffic,“ he said. “They’re not being threatened by people around them and they’re staying poised.

“We’re more aggressive now than we were the first meet of the season. In order to be the best, you have to run with the best.”

While the trip to the Seattle was a successful one, Glance said it was indeed a hard trip and sees the coming bye week as a time to regroup heading into the SEC Indoor Championships.

Glance said he gave his squad Monday off and continued their workouts in the middle of the week. He said he will use next week to address maintenance work.

Looking ahead to the Indoor Championships, the Tide will field a team that is capable of making noise and challenging some of the power-house programs in the SEC.

“For the first time in a long time, we have a good chance of finishing in the middle of the pack,” Glance said. “It’s a tough league top to bottom and we want to be respectful.”

Glance added that this squad, due to its depth, will be a better national team than it is a conference team.

Following its bye week, the Tide will travel to Fayetteville, Ark., for the SEC Indoor Championships Feb. 25-27 at Randal Tyson Track on the campus of the University of Arkansas.

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