– The No. 4 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team saw its school record at 400 meters fall at the hands of senior Regina George
Friday evening on day one of the Tyson Invitational. With her time of 51.67, she also posted a world-leading mark in the event. The Razorbacks also picked up a win from Shannon Klenke
at 5,000 meters and collected eight personal-best performances. Day two of the meet begins Saturday at 11 a.m. (CT) with field events and 1 p.m. with running events.
Running in the final section of the invitational 400 meters, George ran to the front at the break and pulled away from the field to post the fastest time in school history. With her performance Friday, she broke the old school record of 52.10 set by former teammate Shelise Williams in 2011. As the first-ever Razorback to run a sub-52 time, George replaced the 2013 world-leading mark which stood at 51.82 by Ebony Floyd. George also extended her NCAA lead in the event.
“I’ve been putting in the work in practice,” George said. “My goal was to come out here and run a 51, but I didn’t know I was going to come through the 200 (meters) so fast but I didn’t stop. I kept working for it and I’m happy about my time and the school record that I’ve wanted to get since last year. I’m in better shape than I thought I was because at the end, I was still holding on to my form.”
Arkansas’ first win of the day came from Klenke in the invitational section of the 5,000 meters. The Razorback sophomore broke away early during the 25-lap race and crossed the finish line in a personal-best time of 16:58.10, nearly 18 seconds clear of the second-place runner. Klenke entered Friday’s race having competed at 5,000 meters just one other time during her career. She replaced her previous lifetime best of 17:37.79.
Including George’s performance Friday, the Razorbacks posted a total of three top-10 finishes in the invitational section of the 400 meters. Teammates Gwendolyn Flowers
and Sparkle McKnight
both established personal bests to finish fifth and ninth overall, respectively. Flowers had a time of 53.48, while McKnight crossed the finish line in a time of 53.94.
The Razorbacks’ middle distance received a boost from a runner-up showing from Martine Borge
in the invitational section of the 800 meters. Holding the lead for most of Friday’s race, the Arkansas senior posted a season-best time of 2:07.73 despite slipping to second place down the stretch. In the Olympic development section of the 800 meters, Keri Wood
had a fifth-place finish in a personal-best time of 2:09.90. The race marked Wood’s first sub-2:10 result of her career.
had a top-five finish in the invitational section of the pole vault with a fifth-place effort. She had a final clearance of 4.23m/13-10.5, the same height as two other competitors but finished in fifth with more misses throughout the competition. Former NCAA champion and Razorback standout Tina Sutej
finished second in her post-collegiate debut.
The Razorbacks picked up a pair of runner-up performances Megan Zimlich
and Tamara Myers
in the college sections of the pole vault and long jump, respectively. Zimlich had a final clearance of 3.85m/12-7.5 in the pole vault before bowing out with the bar set at 3.95m/12-11.5. In the long jump, Myers had a day’s best effort of 6.07m/19-11 competing in flight three of the event.
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.