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June 9, 2013

OU’s Brooks wins another national title in shot put

EUGENE, Ore. — Oklahoma crowned a national champion Saturday, when Tia Brooks repeated as the NCAA outdoor shot put gold medalist, setting a new national meet standard with a throw of 18.91 meters or, measured another way, 60 feet and a half inch.

It was the Sooners’ first and only event national title of the meet.

Also Saturday, the meet’s final day, the Sooner men picked up a third-place finish in the 1500 meters, when Patrick Casey finished short only of Oregon’s Mac Fleet and Air Force’s Zach Perkins. The Sooner senior finished in 3:50.60, just 0.35 off Fleet’s championship pace.

Also competing for OU, Riley Masters finished a disappointing 11th in the same event, clocking in at 3:55.12.

Kristen Rice also performed Saturday, finishing 18th in the high jump, clearing 5-9 3/4.

Overall, the Sooner women placed 21st at the national meet with 21 points. The Sooner men garnered six points, tying for 38th place with North Texas, Akron, Purdue, Auburn and Northern Arizona.

In the team standings, a dropped baton cost the Texas A&M men an outright NCAA outdoor track and field team title.

The Aggies finished last in the 1,600-meter relay after mishandling the baton before the first exchange, propelling event winner Florida into a tie for the title Saturday.

Each team finished with 53 points for the first co-champions since 1978. It was the second consecutive team title for the Gators after a string of three straight for the Aggies.

Florida won the relay in 3 minutes, 1.34 seconds.

“I just told the guys let’s go win the relay,” coach Mike Holloway said. “We don’t see it as Texas A&M dropping the baton, we see it as we didn’t drop it.”

On the women’s side, top-ranked Kansas wrapped up its first women’s team title earlier in the day and finished with 60 points, thwarting Oregon’s “triple crown” attempt to sweep team titles this year in the sport’s three NCAA championships. The Ducks wound up third behind Texas A&M.

Clemson junior Brianna Rollins broke her own collegiate record in the 100 hurdles, finishing in 12:39 to top her mark of 12.47 set in the semifinals Thursday. That time bested the previous record of 12.48 set by USC’s Ginnie Powell at in 2006.

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