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Balumbu Sixth on Final Day of NCAA Championships

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Balumbu Sixth on Final Day of NCAA Championships

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Arkansas track and field has completed competition at the NCAA Championships at Sacramento State’s Hornet Stadium.

The Razorbacks earned two All-America honors with a sixth-place finish from Nkosinza Balumbu in the triple jump and an 11th-place finish from J-Mee Samuels in the 100 meters.

Balumbu, competing a mere 90 minutes from his hometown of Union City, was the lone Hog competitor on Saturday. Competing in front of family-filled stands, Balumbu took an early lead with a mark of 52-1.25 during the prelims.

Advancing to finals, he found his best jump of the day on his final attempt with a mark of 52-5.5, good for a sixth-place finish and the third All-America honor of his career.

“This isn’t how I thought it would turn out and I’m disappointed for (Nkosinza),” assistant coach Dick Booth said. “I thought it would happen. I know he can jump farther than he jumped today. You always feel disappointed when it doesn’t happen. He has waited a year for this moment and I didn’t think it would get away from him.”

Ray Taylor of Cornell won the event with a leap of 53-8.5 on his final attempt.

“I’m disappointed, of course, because I didn’t win,” Balumbu said. “I think I did the best I could do today. I just have to take it and run with it. I was able to take all six jumps so I don’t have any complaints about that. I was just happy I could get through the competition and take all of my jumps.”

Arkansas finished 63rd in the team standings with Balumbu’s three points. Florida State won the team title for the second consecutive season with 54 points.

Arkansas now totals 645 All-America honors from 182 student-athletes. Arkansas was shut-out of a team title in all three seasons (cross country, indoor and outdoor) for the first time since 1983. The 2007 outdoor season also marks the lowest team finish since 1947.

For complete results, schedule and details of the NCAA Championships, visit www.hornetsports.com.



Sports Category : Track & Field (M)