BRADENTON, Fla. – The Saint Augustine's University track and field program continues to roll along.
The Falcons claimed their fourth straight men's title and the Lady Falcons finished as women runner-ups on the final day of the 2016 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the IMG Academy Track and Field Stadium on Saturday, May 28.
The title was the 38th for the highly successful program under legendary head coach George Williams including their 15th men's outdoor championship. Starting the day with zero points, the Falcons zoomed past their opponents to win in dominating fashion. They scored all 85 points on the final day to rout Tiffin University and Texas A&M University-Kingsville, who both tied for second with 36 points.
The Lady Falcons nearly captured their fifth national outdoor title. They were edged out by national champion Pittsburg State University 52-51 in the women's division which wasn't decided until the final event. Hillsdale College placed third with 45 points.
Had the Lady Falcons won, it would have been the first outdoor sweep for Saint Augustine's University since 2001 and the first women's crown since 2002. Still, the finish was the highest for the Lady Falcons in an outdoor meet since 2003 when they placed second.
The Falcons relied on their relay teams and depth to surge ahead Saturday. They had multiple qualifiers in four events – the 100 and 200 dashes, the 800 run and the triple jump. They scored 57 points in those four events and 20 points in the relays to take control.
Burkheart Ellis, Jr., the team's most versatile performer, led the way for the Falcons. He gained the 200 national title, finished second in the 100 and was a member of the winning 4x100 relay team.
Daniel Jamieson was fourth in the 200, seventh in the 100 and ran on the winning 4x100 squad. Shaquille Dill and Immanuel Hutchinson were first and third, respectively, in the 800 and both ran on the winning 4x400 relay. Dill won his national title as a freshman.
Shawn Rowe finished second in the 400 hurdles and ran on the winning 4x400 relay while Kendall Kee placed sixth in the 100 and ran on the winning 4x100 relay. David Shaw was second and Jumonne Exeter placed fourth in the triple jump.
The men served notice that this would be their day in the first running event. The 4x100 team of Brent Arceneaux, Ellis, Kee and Jamieson outran the field in 39.41. When the 100 dash, the 800 run, the triple jump and the 200 dash were completed, the Falcons were ahead 75-36 over TAMU-Kingsville with two events left.
The Falcons capped the meet with a convincing victory in the 4x400 relay. The squad of Rowe, Dill, Hutchinson and Khari Herbert, Jr. won by nearly two seconds with a time of 3:05.47.