4xMile Relay Claims Title on Second Day of Dra
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – In a day were relays dominated the schedule for the University of Arkansas track and field squad, the Razorbacks’ 4xmile relay team claimed first place at the Drake Relays in Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa, on Friday.
Murray Link, Daniel Lincoln, Ryan Travis and Sharif Karie made up the team that ran the race in 16:23.35 finishing 22 seconds ahead of second-place Minnesota with Alabama finishing third. The same group won the 4×1,500-meter race at the Texas Relays earlier this year.
“They ran good and we won big,” UA head coach John McDonnell said. “We led every step of the way. We could have run faster but the competition really did not push us. It has been a good meet overall. We have a lot coming up tomorrow and hopefully we will some events. We have a shot. It will be tough but we have a shot.”
After running the fastest time of 1:23.98 in the prelims of the 4×200-meter relay on Friday morning, the Hog 800-meter team ran 1:23.45 in the finals to finish second behind University of Texas-El Paso. Michael Thomas ran the opening leg handing off to Kevin Baker. Sam Glover ran third for the Hogs and then handed off to anchor Chandun O’Neal.
The Hogs also turned in the fastest time of the day in the prelims of the 4×100-meter relay running 1:23.98. Baker, O’Neal and Glover ran the first, second, and fourth legs and were joined by Maurice Robinson in the third leg. The Hogs will compete in the finals on Saturday morning and will receive the stiffest competition from McNeese State and UTEP, who turned in the second and third fastest times in the prelims.
The Razorback 4×800-meter relay team finished fourth with Chad Grundy running the opening leg who handed off to Andy Beasley who ran a 1:48.80 second leg. Chris Mulvaney ran the third leg with Frans Schimper running the anchor leg for the Hogs.
“Andy Beasley ran a great leg,” McDonnell said. “We had two legs that were not so great but we had a chance to win.”
In individual action, hurdlers Eddie Jackson and Sean Lightfoot both finished second in their heats in the 110-meter hurdle finals running 14.03 and 14.15, respectively, and advanced to the finals on Saturday. Long jumper Richard Smith also advanced to the finals and jumped 24-2.50 finishing seventh.
On Saturday, the Hogs will look for more relay titles running in the distance medley relay, the shuttle hurdle relay, the sprint medley relay and the finals of the 4×100-meter relay. Triple jumpers Smith, Robinson and Lavar Miller will also compete with middle distance runners Grundy and Schimper running the 800 meters and Mulvaney and Travis running the 1,500 meters.
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