– The No. 8 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team added three national qualifiers Saturday at the NCAA West Preliminary in Austin, Texas. Overall, the Razorbacks finish the weekend with 11 entries spread among nine athletes and one relay. Saturday’s qualifiers included Stephanie Brown
at 1,500 meters, Tamara Myers
in the triple jump and the team’s 4x400-meter relay.
Along with its latest additions, Arkansas will be represented at the NCAA Championships by Makeba Alcide
in the high jump and heptathlon, Gwendolyn Flowers
in the 400-meter hurdles, Regina George
in the 400 meters, Kirsten Hesseltine
in the high jump, Grace Heymsfield
in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, Sparkle McKnight
in the 400-meter hurdles and Semehar Tesfaye
at 10,000 meters.
“I feel like we came out here this week and did what we needed to for the team,” George said after the team’s win in the 4x400-meter relay. “Personally, I wanted to finish top three in my heat of the (400 meters) which I did and I also had a PR. Everyone ran well on the 4x4 and we ran under 3:30 which was one of our goals.”
For the first time in her career, Brown will run in the national meet as a 1,500-meter runner with her qualifying performance Saturday. The Razorback junior won her heat in a time of 4:17.18 to clinch a spot in Eugene. She took the lead early in the bell lap and created separation from the pack over the final 100 meters. Brown previously advanced as an 800-meter runner in 2010 and 2011.
Myers secured her first career trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships with a seventh-place finish in the opening round of the triple jump. The Razorback sophomore established a personal best with her sixth-round jump of 13.04m/42-9.5, a mark that moved her from 11th to seventh place in the overall standings. Myers will be the Razorbacks’ first triple jumper at the national meet since the 2010 season.
The Razorbacks capped their weekend with the top qualifying performance in the 4x400-meter relay. The familiar quartet of Flowers, George, Sparkle and Chrishuna Williams
posted a final time of 3:28.92 to advance automatically to Eugene. The time was Arkansas’ second fastest of the season and represents the fourth-fastest showing in school history. The foursome was the national runner-up during the indoor season.
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
– High Jump, Heptathlon
– 1,500 Meters
– 400m Hurdles
– 400 Meters
– High Jump
– 3,000m Steeplechase
– 400m Hurdles
– Triple Jump
– 10,000 Meters
2. Stephanie Brown
23. Keri Wood
33. Kaitlin Flattmann
--. Diane Robison
--. Semehar Tesfaye
17. Ivanique Kemp
24. Makeba Alcide
1. Williams/McKnight/Flowers/George – 3:28.92Q
7. Tamara Myers
– 13.04m/42-9.5Q (PR – prev: 42-7.5)
Q – qualified for NCAA Championships; PR – personal best