Arkansas men, women earn sweep at SEC indoor championships
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Arkansas had the luxury of competing on its own track and celebrating in front of a hometown crowd.
Clive Pullen won the triple jump with a leap of 54 feet, 3 3/4 inches, helping the top-ranked Razorbacks men clinch their 21st Southeastern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championship in the last 25 years on Saturday.
Pullen's winning jump came as Arkansas scored in nearly every event to pull away and finish with 109 points -- ahead of Texas A&M's 85.83 points and Mississippi's 80.5.
Not to be outdone, the defending national champion Arkansas women sealed their own SEC championship by rallying on the final day of the meet and finishing with 110 points.
LSU was far behind in second with 67 points, and first-day leader Georgia took third with 65.
"We won the high jump. We won the triple jump. We won the long jump. That's pretty impressive," Arkansas men's coach Chris Bucknam said. "I'm just across-the-board pleased with how we competed."
The Arkansas men entered Saturday atop the leaderboard with 42 points after Jarrion Lawson and teammate Andreas Trajkovski finished first and second in the long jump, respectively.
Ole Miss stood in third overall, but the Rebels got a boost after Robert Domanic pulled away down the stretch to lead the Rebels to a 1-2-3 finish in the men's one-mile run.
Domanic finished with a time of 4:01.32, and teammates Sean Tobin and Ryan Manahan passed Missouri's Will Crocker on the final turn to take second and third, respectively.
Ole Miss scored 24 points with its strong finish in the mile run, getting within a 1/2 point of tying Arkansas for the team lead with more than half of the events completed.
"We want to do really well in this event, but our goal is to win the entire meet," Domanic said. "We knew if we wanted to have a chance to win the meet, we have to go 1-2-3."
But Arkansas ensured that no team got any closer in earning its 21st SEC Indoor Championship.
Pullen posted his winning jump on his second-to-last attempt -- more than five inches better than the 53-10 1/2 set by Auburn's Shawn Johnson.
On the women's side, the Razorbacks began their chant of "calling the Hogs" after they completed their comeback with a win in the distance medley relay, one of the meet's final events.
The Razorbacks got a strong push down the stretch to edge LSU in the relay, winning it with a time of 11:14.46. LSU came up right behind at 11:15.43.
"After (Friday night), we thought, `Well, it's going to be really close, us and Florida," Arkansas women's coach Lance Harter said. "Every time we turned around, it was another break to the positive and this is just icing on the cake."
Arkansas sprinter Taylor Ellis-Watson won the 400-meter dash with a time of 51.84, then took fourth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 23.10.
Tennessee's Felicia Brown pulled away from the pack in the 200, winning it with a time of 22.45 -- the fastest collegiate mark since 2008 and third fastest in college history.
But it wasn't all smooth sailing for the Razorbacks.
A fight involving Arkansas runner Marqueze Washington and LSU runner Michael Cherry broke out alongside the track following the men's 400-meter run, forcing security to rush to the scene.
Washington and Cherry were eventually separated and escorted away from the track. Both runners were banned from competing in any more events.
Copyright 2016 by The Associated Press
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