FAYETTEVILLE – Seniors Alain Bailey and Dorian Ulrey picked up NCAA automatic-qualifying marks in their respective events on day one of the Tyson Invitational for No. 8 Arkansas Razorback men’s track and field.
"Getting two auto qualifiers, that’s a good day," head coach Chris Bucknam said. "Alain Bailey made a statement in the long jump and came out of his shell. Dorian Ulrey got his auto time in the mile and now he can focus on training. I was impressed with Scott MacPherson’s toughness in the 5,000 meters and he got the job done."
Ulrey was running for the collegiate record in the mile (3:55) but fell just short with his time of 3:57.80 to finish fourth. He did clock an NCAA auto time, ranks No. 2 is the NCAA and leads the SEC.
Senior Scott MacPherson led a trio of Razorbacks to provisional qualifiers in the 5,000 meters. He finished second with a time of 13:51.43. Freshman Solomon Haile was fifth in 13:58.03 and freshman Eric Fernandez was sixth in 14:08.46. All three were under the NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 14:10.
"I’m ready to go faster and that could definitely happen at SECs," MacPherson said. "You never know with our conference and I have to be prepared for anything. I had a better finish in tonight’s race than I’ve had all season. I’m really working hard on that part of my race."
In the invitational flight of the long jump, Bailey won the event with an NCAA automatic jump of 26-2.75. His mark is a personal best, ranks No. 2 in the NCAA and the SEC and is the No. 6 jump in school history. Sophomore Tarik Batchelor finished fourth in the event. His best jump of the day measured 25-7.25 and is an improved NCAA provisional-qualifying mark.
The men’s track and field finalists for the 100 Years of the Razorback: Fan of the Century were recognized at tonight’s meet: Kevin Redwine from Ponca City, Okla., Frank Luther from Fayetteville, Ark. and David Reece from Fayetteville, Ark. Reece won the grand prize drawing that includes a travel bag of Razorback track and field equipment.