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Courtesy: Robert Black Photography
Solomon Haile ran to an SEC runner-up finish in Friday night's 10K.
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No. 5 Razorbacks in second after day two

Athletic Communications
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COLUMBIA, Mo. – The No. 5 University of Arkansas men’s track and field is in second place after day two of the SEC Outdoor Championships in Columbia, Mo. Through three events scored, the Razorbacks have scored 25 points behind a haul of points in the decathlon and 10,000 meters. Arkansas was paced Friday by a pair of runner-up efforts from Kevin Lazas in the decathlon and Solomon Haile at 10,000 meters. In preliminary action, the Razorbacks collected three qualifiers for Sunday’s event finals.

The Razorbacks picked up 14 points between the respective second- and third-place finishes from Lazas and Nathanael Franks in the decathlon. On his way to a season-high 7,579 points, Lazas posted a trio of top-five event finishes including a win in the pole vault where he had a final clearance of 4.85m/15-11. With the win in hand, he passed on further attempts at higher bars.

“I gained a lot of confidence during the meet,” Lazas said following the two-day, 10-event competition. “I need to improve my score, which I did and I was also able to get points for the team. This is my second (decathlon) of the year so I know what I have to work on over the next four weeks to get ready for nationals.”

Franks added six points to the Razorbacks’ team total with his personal-best score of 7,520 points, a mark that should move the redshirt sophomore into the top 15 nationally. He bookended his day with personal-best times in the 110-meter hurdles and 1,500 meters. In the final event of the day, Franks finished nearly 18 seconds ahead of the nearest runner with his time of 4:23.16.

The Razorbacks final collection of points Friday came from the duo of Haile and Layne Nixon at 10,000 meters. Haile crossed the finish line in 29:44.54 to equal his second-place effort from last year’s conference meet in Baton Rouge, La. Nixon turned in the first SEC-scoring effort of his career with a sixth-place finish. The Arkansas senior posted a time of 30:17.35. Both runners are scheduled to compete Sunday in the 5,000 meters final.

Arkansas’ first qualifier of the night came from Leoman Momoh who posted the fifth-fastest time during Friday’s preliminary heats of the 800 meters. The Razorback senior won heat four in a time of 1:50.03 to secure his spot in Sunday’s final. Momoh was the conference runner-up at last year’s meet in Baton Rouge, La., in a personal-best time of 1:48.73.

The Razorbacks added a second qualifier with Marek Niit at 200 meters. Running in heat four of six, the Razorback senior ran to a time of 20.98 to put him in scoring position as part of Sunday’s final. He was the sixth overall qualifier and Arkansas’ lone representative in Friday’s preliminary rounds. Niit was the 2011 SEC champion at 200 meters.

Caleb Cross raced out to an early lead in heat one of the 400-meter hurdles to win the race in a time of 52.14. He finished the event with the fourth-fastest time during the qualifying round. The Newport, Ark., native is the defending SEC champion in the event and is also entered to compete in Saturday’s prelims of the 110-meter hurdles.

Saturday’s schedule in Columbia will feature scoring opportunities in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, long jump, shot put and javelin. Preliminary competition on day three will include the 100 meters, 400 meters, 1,500 meters and 110-meter hurdles.

The 2013 SEC Championships will be streamed live by ESPN3 on Saturday, May 11 from 3:40-6:45 p.m., and Sunday, May 12 from 2:50-6:45 p.m. Competition outside of the ESPN3 coverage windows will be made available on MUTigers.com. The 2013 SEC Outdoor Championships will air as part of a 90-minute show on ESPNU on Thursday, May 23 at 7 p.m.

For more information regarding Razorback track and field or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Fans can also keep up with Arkansas cross country and track and field through the team’s sport-specific RazorbackTF Facebook and Twitter pages.

Friday Results
Team Standings (top five thru 3 events)
1. #1 Florida – 35
2. #5 ARKANSAS – 25
3. #7 Georgia – 17
4. Missouri – 15
5. #2 Texas A&M - 7

200 Meters (preliminary)
6. Marek Niit – 20.98Q

800 Meters (preliminary)
5. Leoman Momoh – 1:50.03Q
10. Ryan Thomas – 1:50.87
11. Patrick Rono – 1:51.06
13. Anthony Lieghio – 1:51.57
21. Andrew Pisechko – 1:52.73
23. Tomas Squella – 1:53.66

10,000 Meters (final)
2. Solomon Haile – 29:44.54 [8 points]
6. Layne Nixon – 30:17.35 [3]

400m Hurdles (preliminary)
4. Caleb Cross – 52.14Q

Decathlon (final)
2. Kevin Lazas – 7,579 points [8 points]
    6. 110m Hurdles – 15.19 [827 points]
    4. Discus – 40.57m/133-1 [676]
    1. Pole Vault – 4.85m/15-11 [865]
    4. Javelin – 55.19m/181-1 [666]
    6. 1,500 Meters – 5:07.88 [515]
3. Nathanael Franks – 7,520 points [6 points]
    9. 110m Hurdles – 15.59 (PR – prev: 15.64) [780 points]
    5. Discus – 40.27m/132-1 [670]
    4. Pole Vault – 4.25m/13-11.25 [688]
    5. Javelin – 51.66m/169-6 [613]
    1. 1,500 Meters – 4:23.16 (PR – prev: 4:38.59) [790]
9. Matt Kirbos – 6,401 points
    10. 110m Hurdles – 16.43 [685 points]
    9. Discus – 32.72m/107-4 [518]
    5. Pole Vault – 4.05m/13-3.5 [631]
    9. Javelin – 47.31m/155-2 [549]
    10. 1,500 Meters – 5:33.14 [384]
10. Julius Sommer – 5,479 points
    4. 110m Hurdles – 14.95 (PR – prev: 15.34) [856 points]
    1. Discus – 43.06m/141-3 [727]
    --. Pole Vault – NH
    6. Javelin – 50.42m/165-5 [595]
    9. 1,500 Meters – 5:22.67 [436]

Q – qualified for event final; PR – personal best

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