DURHAM, N.C. – Arkansas continued to set the table for a big weekend after qualifying six individuals for finals at the 2000 Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Durham, N.C.
“It was Murphy’s Law, everything that could have went wrong, did today,” Arkansas head coach John McDonnell said. “I hope that our luck changes. But we did have a lot of good things happen today.”
Arkansas is in a tie for sixteenth as the Hogs still have five points from Melvin Lister’s 26-foot performance in the long jump. The Razorbacks have only had three chances to score as they have participated in prelims most of Wednesday and Thursday. Stanford is in first place with 31 points, with Auburn in second with 21 points. Southern Methodist is in third with 16 points and Southeastern Conference teams LSU and Georgia are in fourth and fifth respectively.
The evening began with the Arkansas hurdle crew continuing to have strong meet performances. D’Marcus Brown, Eddie Jackson and Sean Lightfoot all advanced to the semifinals of the 110-meter hurdles. Brown was the quickest Hog with a 13.77 seconds time and the seventh fastest time in the event. Jackson and Lightfoot both ran 13.99 to advance to the semifinals. The semifinals of the 110-meter hurdles will be Friday.
Equally as impressive is the Hog’s three-man core of 1,500-meter runners. James Karanu, Sharif Karie and Ryan Travis advanced to the finals that will be held Saturday evening.
Arkansas’ 4×400-meter relay team shocked the stadium as they defended their first place best collegiate time of 3:02.02, an Arkansas record. Changing the order slightly, Lister ran a 45.2 second 400m in the first leg followed by Sam Glover’s second leg of 45.0 seconds. Ryan Stanley ran a strong 45.8 second lap and Kevin Baker finished the race with a 45.7 second leg.
“They were four steady, blue-collar work efforts that broke a 15 year old University of Arkansas school record,” sprints coach Steve Silvey said.
Senior Adam Dailey was not as lucky as he got tripped up with five laps to go in the 10,000m. In the final few laps, as Dailey was running he stepped on the ring that divides the track and the infield and almost fell. He still was able to get up and finish tenth.
“Dailey ran a great race but just fell off the track with a few laps to go, he definitely would have placed.” McDonnell said.
Senior Marcus Clavelle failed to qualify for the finals in the shot put. The big man through a 59-4.75.
Friday evening Lister and freshman Jason Ward will jump in the triple jump, the hurdler trio will attempt to the finals and Glover will participate in the finals of the 400-meter intermediate hurdles. These will be followed by the finals of the 800-meter run with Karanu going after his first national title.
“It is definitely not over until Saturday night,” McDonnell said. “We have to come out here with fire in our eyes and just get the job done. We still have the people to get it done.