From the University of Arkansas:
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - In a successful defense of her conference title in the pentathlon, senior Makeba Alcide broke the collegiate record with a performance of 4,569 points in the five-event competition Friday at the 2013 Southeastern Conference Indoor Championships at the Randal Tyson Track Center in Fayetteville. With the help of four personal bests, Alcide also reset her own school record and national record for her native St. Lucia, and broke the SEC Championships meet record.
Through one scored event, Arkansas has 10 points with Alcide's win and is tied for first place in the team standings with Texas A&M. The Razorbacks have three scoring opportunities Saturday with entries in the event final of the 3,000 meters, pole vault and long jump. The women's competition on day two begins at noon (CT) with the pole vault.
Friday's performance surpassed the previous collegiate record of 4,555 set last season by Brianne Theisen of Oregon. Alcide entered the weekend with a personal-best of 4,464 points scored earlier this season at the Razorback Team Invitational. That score ranked sixth in collegiate history and made her the No. 3 all-time performer in the event. She now owns the top spot on both lists.
Alcide also becomes the third woman in SEC history to win back-to-back pentathlon titles and the first since Hyleas Fountain of Georgia repeated in 2003 and 2004. Fountain was the meet-record holder prior to Friday. With Alcide's win, the Arkansas women captured their 53rd SEC event title.
"I wasn't going for a record," Alcide said after Friday's performance. "I just wanted to win and give my team 10 points. It just happened. I had four (personal bests) again which is good but I didn't have a PR in my best event. In an interview earlier this year, one of the reporters asked me if I had peaked and I said no. Today just shows I didn't."
Needing to run near her personal best at 800 meters to secure the NCAA mark, Alcide put in a kick around the final lap. She charged down the final stretch and clocked in at 2:16.37 to add 874 points to her total, set a new personal best in the event and elevate her overall score past the old collegiate record.
Alcide opened her day with a personal-best performance in the 60-meter hurdles. Running in the last of three sections, the Razorback senior crossed the finish line in a time of 8.35, a tenth of a second faster than her previous best in the event. Her run was worth 1,050 points and after one event, Alcide was tied with Erica Bougard of Mississippi State for first place.
The time also set an Arkansas pentathlon event record, flying by the old record of 8.44 set by Beyonka McDowell in 2005. With her 800 meters Friday and high jump performance at the Razorback Team Invitational, Alcide now owns three of the program's five pentathlon event records
The Castries, St. Lucia, native took the outright lead with a final clearance of 1.87m/6-1.5 in the high jump-the only event she didn't record a PR-and added 1,067 points toward her total. Alcide's performance established a new SEC meet pentathlon record for the high jump. The clearance was her third six-foot result of the season; she entered the year with a personal best of 5-10.5. Alcide is the only Razorback in school history to clear the six-foot barrier.
On her third throw of the shot put competition, Alcide established another personal best with a measure of 12.32m/40-5. The mark was worth another 682 points toward her score, and at the end of three events, she led the field by 202 points. Alcide had a previous best in the event of 40-1.5.
After a big jump from her closest competition, Alcide responded with a personal-best showing of her own in the long jump. She landed in the pit with a mark of 6.15m/20-2.25 on her second pass down the runway. It was the first 20-foot jump of her career and measured nearly a foot beyond her previous best of 19-3. Alcide's jump is the longest by any Razorback this season. The jump was worth 896 points and put her within reach of the collegiate mark.
"What a way to start a meet," head coach Lance Harter said. "The collegiate record wasn't even in the thought process. In the SEC, you knew it was going to be very competitive. Even with a bit of an injury scare in the high jump, she just never seemed to lose her game face. She just said let's go for it. Jumping that big PR in the long jump really set her up for that record to be possible."
For tickets, visit the Razorback Ticket Center on Razorback Road by Baum Stadium, log on to the online ticket office at ArkansasRazorbacks.com or call 800/982-HOGS (4647).
ESPN3.com will carry the SEC Indoor Championships with coverage set for Saturday and Sunday. Commentary duties will be handled by Dwight Stones (play-by-play), Larry Rawson (color analyst) and Lewis Johnson (sideline reporter). ArkansasRazorbacks.com will stream early Saturday and Sunday coverage. A tape-delay television broadcast of the conference meet will air March 13 at 8:30 p.m. on ESPNU.
The official hash tag of the 2013 SEC Indoor Championships is #SECTF. For more information regarding Razorback track and field or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Fans can also keep up with Arkansas cross country and track and field through the team's sport-specific RazorbackTF Facebook and Twitter pages.