June 4, 2013
EUGENE, Ore. -
After two practices at Hayward Field, the Alabama track and field team is set for the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships which get underway Wednesday afternoon in Eugene, Ore.
A total of 15 Crimson Tide student-athletes will compete in the national championships this week, including a dozen men and a trio of women.
"We've got a great group here this week," Dan Waters, in his second season as the Tide' head coach, said. "We have a good mix of events and I think there's no doubt that it could be a very exciting meet for us as a team."
Sophomore Diondre Batson, who joined the Tide at the semester after finishing his football career at American River College in the fall, will compete in the 100-meters and 200m as well as the 4x100m relay. The Southeastern Conference 100m champion, Batson is undefeated in the 100m this season and is ranked in the top-10 in the world this year in the 100m. He is seeded fourth in the 100m and ninth in the 200m.
Batson, along with junior Alex Sanders and Akeem Haynes and senior Dushane Farrier are seeded first in the 4x100m relay with a time of 39.09. Alabama also qualified in the 4x400m relay where juniors Joel Lynch and Ken Taylor combine with freshmen Dwight Davis and Quincy Smith for the 18th seed.
Freshman Elias Hakansson, who holds every spot on UA's all-time hammer throw top-10 is seeded 12th in that event with a throw of 64.35-meters. Junior Kamal Fuller, who earned All-American honors during the indoor season, is seeded 18th in the long jump. Two members of the 2013 SEC All-Freshman squad will also compete in the jumps this week. Justin Fondren is seeded 20th in the high jump while Imani Brown is seeded 24th in the triple jump.
On the women's side of the slate, a trio of seniors will represent the Tide in the field events. Krystle Schade, a six-time All-American in the high jump between indoor and outdoor honors, is seeded eighth coming into the meet after jumping 1.81 at the NCAA East Preliminary Championship. Alexis Paine, the school record holder and an All-American in the pole vault, is seeded 18th. Wilamena Hopkins, an SEC Indoor Shot Put champion, is seeded 22nd in the shot here in Eugene.
The meet will be broadcast by the ESPN family of networks throughout the week while updates on Alabama can be found on RollTide.com as well as on Twitter (@AlabamaTrack) and Facebook (AlabamaTrack).