Arkansas' Alcide sets NCAA best at SEC Indoors
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) - Makeba Alcide's first goal entering the Southeastern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships was to give the Arkansas women 10 early points with a win in the pentathlon.
The record-setting senior did just that and then some on Friday, scoring a collegiate-record 4,569 points in the event to give the Razorbacks a share of the early lead with Texas A&M in the three-day meet.
Alcide, who won the event last year, set personal bests in four of the five events - including a 2:16.37 in the final event, the 800-meter run that clinched the record. The senior bested the former mark of 4,555 points, which was set last year by Oregon's Brianne Theisen.
Alicde's previous best came nearly two months ago in a home meet when she scored 4,464 points. That mark was the sixth-best in NCAA history entering Friday, and Alcide said in recent weeks that she felt as if she would be able to best that at the SEC meet.
"My last interview, one of the interviewers, asked me if I had had peaked, but I said no,'' Alcide said. "That just shows I didn't.''
The record day nearly didn't happen after Alcide injured herself on her last high jump attempt.
She had already set an SEC indoor meet pentathlon record with a jump of 1.87 meters, but the senior was unable to set the overall conference record when she missed on three attempts at 1.90 meters. On her last attempt, Alcide strained a quad muscle and limped off the track and to the trainer's room.
"I was a little worried,'' Alcide said. "... It still hurts a little bit, but I had to push it to score 10 points.''
Alcide missed much of the warmup period for the shot put while having the injury treated. She was able to get in a few practice throws, however, and went on to add to her growing list of personal bests with a throw of 12.32 meters.
After another personal best in the long jump (6.15 meters), Alcide led Mississippi State's Erica Bougard 3,695-3,582 entering the final event, the 800-meter run. Alcide needed to run at least a 2:17.3 to set the NCAA record, and just did that - with the aid of a tremendous kick on the final of the four laps.
"She was super aggressive,'' Arkansas coach Lance Harter said. "So, I don't know if it was blood and guts. When she got done, she just immediately turned around and walked off the track.
"It was like she was ... It was definitely not everything. There was more left in the tank.''
Bougard appeared to finish second in the event with a score of 4,459 points, but her point total in the 800 was later taken away after she was disqualified for stepping out of lane. After the disqualification, the sophomore was 13th while Georgia's Lucie Ondraschkova finished second with 4,208 points.
The men's competition began Friday as well with the first four events of the heptathlon. Georgia's Garrett Scantling took the lead with 3,304 points with the 60-meter hurdles, pole vault and 1,000-meter still to take place Saturday afternoon.
Scantling led from the outset on Friday, taking the lead with a 6.95-second 60-meter. The sophomore also won the shot put with a throw of 14.26 meters and was second in the high jump portion of the event behind teammate Maicel Uibo.
Uibo was second after the first day with 3,197 points, while Arkansas' Nathanael Franks was third with 3,081 points.
The pentathlon and heptathlon were the only events to take place on Friday, with the three-day event continuing on Saturday. The Arkansas men are the defending conference indoor champion, though Florida has won the past three NCAA championships.
The Gators are also the defending women's indoor champions.