College Station, Texas - Sophomore Akeem Bloomfield claimed gold in the men's 400m to lead the Tigers at Day 2 of the Southeastern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships at the Gillam Indoor Stadium. Teammate Nathon Allen grabbed third place in the 400, crossing in 46.07.
"Winning anything is an accomplishment and winning an SEC championship is wonderful," Bloomfield said. "I didn't win last year, but came back to win this year. I'm very thankful, proud of myself and very happy."
Bloomfield clocked a time of 45.22 to become Auburn's first winner in the event since Avard Moncur in 2001. Running in the second of two time heats, the sophomore from Kingston, Jamaica grabbed a lead thru the stagger and led the remainder en route to victory.
"The race strategy was to get to the break first," Bloomfield said. "I had a little challenge getting to the break, but once I got in front I had to maintain my lead and I felt I would come out with the victory."
Sophomore Raheem Chambers recorded a season-best 6.63 to claim a bronze medal in the men's 60m dash. Chambers, who finished fifth as a freshman posted the best finish by an AU sophomore in the event since 2012 when Harry Adams won gold.
Senior Jonielle Smith and freshman Natalliah Whyte both tied career bests in the women's 60m to finish third and fourth, respectively. Smith clocked a 7.18, while Whyte was a one hundredth behind in 7.19. The last time the Tigers had two top finishers at SEC Indoors in the event was 2012.
A PR performance was posted by Jakayla Hand who was fourth in the women's triple jump with a mark of 13.30m/43-7.75. Hand's jump was the second best performance for a Tiger in the event at the SEC meet in the last decade and is the No. 8 performance since 1998 at Auburn.
Junior Chris Stone posted the fifth-best heptathlon score at Auburn in the last 20 years, recording a personal-best 5547 to claim fifth-place. His score was the best by a Tiger since Maurice Smith won the event in 2005 with 6035 points. Stone recorded PRs in the long jump, 1000m and had the best pole vault mark among all competitors at the meet.
Junior Xavier Coakley claimed eighth in the 60m hurdles in 7.95, his highest finish at SEC Indoors in the event.
Senior miler Wesley Curles, crossed in 4:09.54 to grab sixth place.
Freshman Noah Igbinoghene, competing in only his second meet of the season, claimed seventh in the men's triple jump with a mark of 15.24m/50-0. It's the best performance by an AU freshman in the event at SECs in the last two decades.
Seven PRs were established by the Tigers on Day 2 of the championships and 14 total set during the meet.
Auburn's men finished the meet with 36 points to grab eighth place. The women were 13th with 16 points.