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Andrew Irwin was the Razorbacks' first NCAA qualifier Saturday.
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Razorbacks finish weekend with 20 qualifiers

Athletic Communications
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AUSTIN, Texas – The No. 4 University of Arkansas men’s track and field team added five qualifiers to its overall total on the final day of competition at the NCAA West Preliminary in Austin. The Razorbacks finish the weekend with 20 entries spread among 17 athletes and two relays. Saturday’s qualifiers included Tarik Batchelor in the triple jump, Kemoy Campbell at 5,000 meters, Andrew Irwin in the pole vault and both relay teams.

Arkansas will also be represented at the NCAA Championships by Batchelor in the long jump, Caleb Cross in the 400-meter hurdles, Nathanael Franks in the decathlon, Akheem Gauntlett at 400 meters, Dwayne Golbek in the high jump, Solomon Haile at 10,000 meters, Raymond Higgs in the long jump, Stanley Kebenei in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, Jarrion Lawson in the long jump, Kevin Lazas in the decathlon, Anthony Lieghio at 800 meters, Anthony May II in the high jump, Leoman Momoh at 800 meters, Patrick Rono at 800 meters and Tomas Squella at 800 meters.

Irwin was the Razorbacks’ first NCAA qualifier of the day with his result in the pole vault. The two-time NCAA indoor champion will be making his first career appearance at the outdoor final site. The Mount Ida, Ark., native was the fourth-overall qualifier and one of 11 jumpers to clear the final bar height of 5.40m/17-8.5. He cleared four bar heights during the competition with just one miss.   

In the first running event of the day, Arkansas’ 4x100-meter relay team of Cross, Lawson, Gauntlett and Braddy combined for a time of 39.57 to win heat two. It was the second-fastest time of the day. With the result, the Razorbacks clinched a berth into the national meet in Eugene. Cross, Lawson and Gauntlett were individual qualifiers in their respective events earlier in the week.

The Razorbacks’ 4x400-meter relay team of Braddy, Cross, Gauntlett and Anton Kokorin clinched the final qualifying spot of the weekend. Running in heat two of three, Arkansas won its section in a time of 3:05.21 which gave the team an automatic berth into the NCAA Championships. With Saturday’s results, the Razorbacks will have both 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays at the national meet for the third consecutive year.

“It’s been a long weekend,” Gauntlett said following the 4x400-meter relay. “Coach told us to do what we needed to do to punch our tickets without giving too much away during a long week with a lot of work. It’s always a great feeling to qualify for nationals because you’re competing against the best and going to represent your team. You’re so used to competing for the team, when you step out there you’re always thinking team first.”

Batchelor will pull double duty for Arkansas in Eugene after qualifying in the triple jump. The Razorback senior was the second-overall performer in the event with a personal-best mark of 16.15m/53-0 on his first pass down the runway. He took one more jump before deciding to pass on his remaining attempts. In a near miss for the team, May finished one spot shy of qualifying for his second event of the weekend. In the process, he equaled his personal best with a third-round jump of 15.62m/51-3.

The Razorbacks’ final individual qualifier of the day was Campbell who finished second in his heat and third overall with a time of 13:45.85. He was one of four runners in the second heat to post a time better than the previous facility record at Mike A. Myers Stadium. In his first season at Arkansas, Campbell is making his second NCAA appearance of the year. He was the indoor runner-up at 3,000 meters.

With national qualifiers decided, the collegiate season will come to a conclusion June 5-8 with the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore. 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.

NCAA Championships Qualifiers
Tarik Batchelor – Long Jump, Triple Jump
Kemoy Campbell – 5,000 Meters
Caleb Cross – 400m Hurdles
Nathanael Franks – Decathlon
Akheem Gauntlett – 400 Meters
Dwayne Golbek – High Jump
Solomon Haile – 10,000 Meters
Raymond Higgs – Long Jump
Andrew Irwin – Pole Vault
Stanley Kebenei – 3,000m Steeplechase
Jarrion Lawson – Long Jump
Kevin Lazas – Decathlon
Anthony Lieghio – 800 Meters
Anthony May II – High Jump
Leoman Momoh – 800 Meters
Patrick Rono – 800 Meters
Tomas Squella – 800 Meters
4x100m Relay
4x400m Relay

Saturday Results
5,000 Meters
3. Kemoy Campbell – 13:45.85Q

4x100m Relay
2. Cross/Lawson/Gauntlett/Braddy – 39.57Q

4x400m Relay
2. Braddy/Kokorin/Cross/Gauntlett – 3:05.21Q

Pole Vault
4. Andrew Irwin – 5.40m/17-8.5Q

Triple Jump
2. Tarik Batchelor – 16.15m/53-0Q (PR – prev: 52-8.75)
13. Anthony May II – 15.62m/51-3 (t-PR)

29. Jeff Woods – 62.12m/203-10

Q – qualified for NCAA Championships; PR – personal best

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