FAYETTEVILLE – Makeba Alcide turned in a first-place performance in the pentathlon Friday afternoon to highlight day one of the Razorback Invitational for the No. 6 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team. The Razorbacks also ran to strong performances in the sprint events at the Randal Tyson Track Center.
"We’re obviously elated with our multi-event athletes," head coach Lance Harter said. "They had really good days but we know there’s room for improvement. All three of our hurdles qualified for tomorrow’s rounds so they’re going to get things going and get some momentum for us. Today was a good day and sets us up for tomorrow."
Alcide took the top spot in the pentathlon with a personal-best 3,887 points, an improvement of her previous high by more than 500 points. Along the way, she collected personal bests in the high jump and 800 meters. She entered the final event with a 73-point lead over teammate and runner-up Leah Orley. The two Razorbacks held the lead throughout the race but Alcide went ahead on the final turn to take the tape and secure the pentathlon win.
In a second-place showing, Orley finished the five-event competition with a personal-best 3,763 points. Alcide’s point total in the pentathlon is No. 7 in the nation. She missed joining Arkansas’ top-five performers by just 42 points.
On the sprint straightaway, the Razorbacks qualified three for Saturday’s semifinal round of the 60-meter hurdles with Brittany Hyter (8.43), Ivanique Kemp (8.46) and Breeana Coleman (8.47) all turning in personal-best performances. Hyter led Arkansas’ charge as the fourth overall qualifier. In double duty, Coleman also competed in the 60 meters and finished 20th overall with a time of 7.74.
Regina George turned in the eighth-fastest time in the 200 meters with a clocking of 23.92. The race marked the first collegiate 200-meter dash for the sophomore standout. Gwendolyn Flowers finished 15th overall with a personal-best time of 24.21 while Rachel Werner was 37th overall with a 25.38 clocking.
In other field results, Kirsten Hesseltine cleared a personal-best height of 5-7 in the high jump, good for a ninth-place result. Shantel Thompson turned in another ninth-place result for the Razorbacks with a 19-5.5 mark in the long jump.
With a competition field that features seven teams ranked in the nation’s top 25, the first day of the Razorback Invitational saw several NCAA seasonal bests and qualifying marks. All told, the 11-team field (men’s and women’s) combined for 12 individual automatic qualifiers and two relay qualifiers.
Arkansas returns to action Saturday for the conclusion of the Razorback Invitational. Competition begins at 11 a.m. (CT) with the 3,000 meters at the Randal Tyson Track Center. Follow this weekend’s action via video stream, interaction blog and live results at ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Download: Razorback Invitational_Day 1 Results.pdf