FAYETTEVILLE – Former University of Arkansas Lady Razorback track athletes Tawa Babatunde, now Dortch, and Marie LeJour-McDonaugh were at the tops of their games as they won Canadian National Championships in the 400-meter hurdles and discus throw, respectively at the countries national meet.
Dortch and LeJour-McDonaugh each hold the Arkansas school records in their specialties and put together tremendous competitions to take their first and second national titles. Dortch scorched the track in Winnipeg to the tune of 56.40 seconds to easily take first place. Looking strong over each hurdle, she finished four seconds ahead of her competition with second place’s Veronique St. Pierre crossing in 1:00.84.
LeJour-McDonaugh’s victory was not nearly as easy as her former Arkansas teammates. Going for her second Canadian title since leaving the University, she tossed the discus 165 feet, six inches, not quite her career best, but a solid toss none the less. Her competition only managed to go 164-6 clinching the victory for LeJour-McDonaugh.
“Our job as coaches is to get these athletes ready to do whatever they choose, whether that be on the field of competition or in life,” Arkansas head coach Lance Harter said. “I think that this shows that Marie and Tawa were both ready for that next step in their lives and we are very proud of their accomplishments. We wish them the best for the rest of the competitive season.”
Next in line for the pair is a potential trip to the World Track & Field Championships in Helsinki, Finland. Dortch has already attained the ‘B’ standard to qualify for the games, while LeJour-McDonaugh still seeks the mark.
For more information about Lady Razorback track or about Arkansas women’s athletics, please go to www.ladybacks.com.