Ames, Iowa - The final day of the Big 12 Indoor Track and Field Championship was full of historical firsts and suspense, coming down to the last four events in the women’s race and the very last race of the day to decide the men’s champion. In the end, the Texas men and Baylor women took home the Big 12 Track and Field Championship.
The weekend unfolded into another exciting Big 12 postseason championship. Going into the men’s 4X400-meter relay, the Longhorns were on top by seven points. UT needed a strong finish to hold off Kansas. The final event of the championship went Texas’ way as they finished in 3:06.8. The Longhorns’ final point tally was 111.5 to earn their eighth conference crown.
The Baylor women claimed the first track and field championship since the Big 12 began competition after capturing three of the top five spots in the women’s 3,000m, then put any challenge out of reach after defending their crown in the women’s 4X400-meter relay. The 3:32.13 relay marked the second fastest time in the event. The historic meet for Baylor continued as they marked the most team points scored (129.5) and the most event championships (five) in the school’s Big 12 history.
Iowa State’s Jhoanmy Luque took home the women’s high-point award with 20 points, winning two event titles (long jump and triple jump). Luque flew to a triple jump of 44-9 1/2, a personal best by over three inches which moved her up to No. 3 in the country on the season.
OSU’s Craig Nowak earned the men’s high-point award (28 points), winning both the 3,000m men’s distance-medley relay where he ran the anchor leg while taking second in the mile. In the 3,000m, he narrowly topped teammate Hassan Abdi by less than a second, finishing in 8:03.70. In the DMR, Nowak closed the gap in the final leg to overtake second place Kansas by over three seconds (9:44.00).
In the men’s heptathlon, Texas saw history unfold as they took first, second and third in the event. UT was led by Steele Wasik, who kept his placing through the second day of competition. He had top marks in shot put, 60m hurdles and high jump. The medal marks the eighth heptathlon title for the ‘Horns.
Oklahoma’s Hayden McClain also made history by leaping past the previous triple jump record to land a 16.49m spot. In the high jump, K-State earned second, third, fourth, sixth and ninth in the women’s high jump along with Christoff Bryan’s first place mark on the men’s side. The title was the 13th in school history.
On the track, more history was being made by the Baylor men and Texas women. Both registered the 10th title in the 400m in the 21 year history of the Big 12. Zola Golden captured the hardware for UT and George Caddick pulled out Baylor’s first 400m crown since 2008.
Part of the drama fueled in the final few events of the championship was the Baylor showing in the women’s 3,000m. Maggie Montoya pulled ahead of the rest of the pack with about two laps left. She finished the race in 9:14.68, over two seconds faster than the rest of the field.
Outdoor track season gets underway in March with the Big 12 Championship taking place May 12-14 at the Rock Chalk Park on the University of Kansas campus in Lawrence.
Women’s Team Scores
1. Baylor 129.5
2. Texas 100
3. Oklahoma State 88
4. Oklahoma 87
5. Kansas 81
6. Kansas State 77.5
7. Texas Tech 59
8. Iowa State 57
9. TCU 44
10. West Virginia 16
Men’s Team Scores
1. Texas 123.5
2. Kansas 110.5
3. Texas Tech 99.5
4. Oklahoma State 93
5. Iowa State 73.5
6. Kansas State 71.5
7. Baylor 68
8. Oklahoma 65.5
9. TCU 35
Big 12 Championship Records (listed in order of occurrence)
Hayden McClain, Oklahoma, men’s triple jump, 16.49m