AMES, Iowa — With several of their top athletes out with injury, the Baylor women’s track and field team came up well short in their quest to repeat as Big 12 indoor champions. They ended up seventh in the team race.
However, the BU women still plucked away some nice individual hardware — gold medals in three events, to be exact.
As for the Baylor men, they finished eighth in the team race and were blanked from any individual titles. It marked the first time since 2012 that the Bears did not claim a gold at the conference indoor meet.
Baylor junior Kiana Horton delivered one of the top efforts of the day. Horton powered around the oval in a season-best time of 52.60 in the 400 to claim the conference title, the first of her career and her fourth gold medal of the season, including two wins in the 200.
In the 200 race later in the afternoon, Horton finished fourth with a time of 23.87. Oklahoma’s Ama Pipi won gold at 23.51.
BU freshman Morgan Stewart also snatched the first Big 12 title of her career with a victory in the 600-yard run. Stewart posted a winning time of 1:20.45, just ahead of fellow freshman Megan Rourke of Texas (1:20.76).
Baylor women have won the 600 two straight years at the Big 12 indoor meet, as Kiana Hawn won the title last year. Stewart is the fifth BU runner to pick up the title overall, joining Hawn, Raena Rhone (2014), Barbara Petrahn (2002) and Alayah Cooper (1998).
Baylor sophomore Aaliyah Miller made up for lost time with a gold medal in the 800. Miller showed such promise last year as a freshman, including running the fastest 800 in school history at 2:02.89. But an injury suffered late in the indoor season kept her out for the entire outdoor campaign and cross country season.
So Miller’s 800 win on Saturday was a sweet one, as she took command and completed those two laps in a time of 2:04.58, not far off the Big 12 record of 2:04.50 set by former BU standout Olicia Williams in 2016.
On the men’s side, Baylor’s best finish was a silver medal showing in the 4x400 relay. The Bears’ foursome of freshmen Jayson Baldridge and Howard Fields III and juniors Caleb Dickson and Wil London clocked in at 3:08.20, second only to TCU’s 3:07.75.
London did not race in the open 400, despite coming into the meet with the fastest time in the conference in that event. Fields, however, did compete, and took a bronze medal with a time of 46.49. Texas freshman Micaiah Harris darted to the win in 46.33 seconds, while TCU’s Derrick Mokaleng was second at 46.47.
BU sophomore Maxwell Willis, who has been slowed by a hamstring issue this season, failed to repeat as Big 12 champion in the 200. He settled for a tie for fourth with a time of 20.97 and nabbed third in the 60-meter-dash at 6.70 seconds.
The Baylor women’s 4x400 relay team came in second to Kansas with a time of 3:36.33. The Jayhawks came in at 3:35.89. Baylor’s foursome was comprised of Victoria Powell, Miller, Hawn and Horton.