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Razorbacks set pair of collegiate leading times in Tyson Invitational

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – A pair of collegiate-leading marks were established by No. 1 Arkansas on Friday during the first day of the Tyson Invitational held inside Randal Tyson Track Center.

The Razorbacks distance medley relay cruised to a winning time of 10:53.77, the second fastest in school history, with a foursome of Kennedy Thomson (3:22.98), Kethlin Campbell (53.21), Shafiqua Maloney (2:03.33), and Krissy Gear (4:34.25).

“The kids just did a fantastic job and basically had the lead through most of the race,” said Arkansas women’s head coach Lance Harter. “It’s really reconfirming to us that if we had others to chase we could even run faster and maybe break that school record.

“That combination worked really well today and got us in the national meet. Our goal was to get the DMR qualified and then to upgrade our times in the 3,000m to get ready for nationals.”

On the all-time collegiate list, the effort by Arkansas ranks as the 11th fastest performance and it’s the 15th best performance when including post-collegiate marks.

Finishing behind the Razorbacks in the race were Oregon (10:56.79), Florida State (10:57.24) and Oklahoma State (10:57.60). The previous collegiate leading time for 2021 heading into this weekend was an 11:03.62 by BYU.

The only time on the Arkansas all-time list faster is the school record of 10:51.89 set in 2015 at the Tyson facility which was anchored by Dominique Scott. The current Razorback crew bettered the meet record of 11:11.32 set by Tennessee in 2007.

Katie Izzo led a strong Razorback contingent in the 3,000m to take over the collegiate lead from teammate Lauren Gregory. Izzo posted a winning time of 8:57.78 with Gregory runner-up in 8:58.36.

Arkansas depth in the event was on display as they claimed places 3-4-6-7-9 with a crew that included Logan Morris (9:09.49), and Abby Gray (9:17.22). Career best times were produced by Gracie Hyde (9:18.03), Taylor Ewert (9:26.42) and Corie Smith (9:42.28).

In the sprints, Arkansas dominated the 400m field as four Razorbacks established marks that moved them into the UA all-time top 10 list.

Rosey Effiong led the squad with a 52.27 victory, moving to No. 5 all-time, while Tiana Wilson won another section in 52.42 (No. 6 UA). Paris People improved to 52.45 (No. 8 UA) while Maloney hit another career best with a 52.51 (No. 9 UA). Morgan Burks-Magee added a 52.86 to place eighth overall.

“The 400 was fantastic, and we has good performances in the 60 and hurdles today,” added Harter. “It just seemed like we were hitting on all cylinders. That just gives confirmation to the kids and coaching staff that it’s coming together, and it’s coming together at the right time.”

Jada Baylark finished third in the 60m final with a time of 7.28, placing behind a 7.24 for Oregon’s Kemba Nelson and Tamara Clark of Alabama (7.28). The difference between Clark and Baylark was 0.006 of a second.

In the 60m hurdles the tandem of Daszay Freeman and Yoveinny Mota placed fifth and sixth among a very talented field. Freeman ran 8.16 in the final after posting a career best of 8.12 in the prelims, moving to No. 4 on the Arkansas all-time list.

Mota, meanwhile, clocked 8.17 in the final to move to equal No. 7 on the UA all-time list. She also bettered the Venezuelan national record of 8.24 she previously shared. Mota also moved up to No. 5 on the all-time South American list in the event.

Florida’s Grace Stark produced a collegiate leading 7.96 to win the hurdles race over Chanel Brissett of Texas (7.98). The tight finish had four runners separated by 0.02 with Oregon’s Emily Sloan and Tara Davis of Texas both hitting 8.15 ahead of the pair of Razorbacks.

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