One day after Florida’s men’s track team took its latest national title at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, the women’s team decided to do something even cooler:
They won their first.
Led by a handful of individual national championship-winning performances from Talitha Diggs, Anna Hall, and Jasmine Moore, the Gators scored 74 points, more than enough to hold off Texas — again, for the second straight day — in Eugene, claiming the first women’s outdoor track national title in program history.
The national championship also completed two other sweeps for the Gators: The dual outdoor titles, obviously, but also the indoor and outdoor championships for the Florida women, who had won just one team national title entering the 2022 season.
They doubled that haul this season.
All of Diggs, Hall, Moore, and Parker Valby have claims to being the biggest factor in scaling the podium on Saturday.
Diggs garnered her 10 points with a 49.99-second jaunt through the 400 meters, doubling up on individual national titles in the event after an indoor crown earlier this year. Hall completed her utter dominance of the heptathlon at the collegiate level with a national title and a new record — and helped Florida score more points outside of it, placing second in the 400-meter hurdles. Moore matched her national title in the long jump, earned earlier this week, by completing an absurd season sweep of the triple jump across SEC and NCAA indoor and outdoor meets. And Valby, by virtue of those previous performances, needed to score just one point in the 5,000 meters to put Florida’s tally beyond reach.
She placed second, earning eight points. Overachiever.
This outdoor title being the first in program history reduces the number of Florida varsity sports without a national championship to just five — men’s and women’s cross country, and women’s basketball, lacrosse, and volleyball — of the programs fielded by the school. And the collection of three of the four Division I national titles in track is just the fourth such feat in the history of the sport.
It also gives Mike “Mouse” Holloway, who has led Florida’s track programs for two nearly peerless decades, an astounding 12 team national titles, and indoor and outdoor sweeps by both his men’s (2012) and women’s teams.
This 2022 season is thus the crowning achievement of what was already a pace-setting career for Holloway, who is now responsible for more than a quarter of Florida’s team national championships.
And in case you were of the mind that he might be close to slowing down, here’s a fun fact: Four different Gators won a total of six individual national championships this week — and not one of them is more than a sophomore.