DES MOINES, Iowa – The No. 5 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team capped its weekend at the Drake Relays with two titles and a first-place finish in the Hy-Vee Cup standings. During Saturday’s action, the Razorbacks had first-place performances in the 4×400-meter and sprint-medley relays. In winning the medley event, Arkansas improved on its own meet record with a time of 3:43.64.
The Hy-Vee Cup, now in its third year, is awarded to the team with the highest point total in the five—4x100m, 4x400m, 4x800m, sprint medley, distance medley—scored relays. The Razorbacks finished the Drake Relays with 30 points in the Hy-Vee standings. In addition to Saturday’s wins, Arkansas also picked up points from its fourth-place finish in the 4×800 and sixth-place showing in the distance medley.
In their first event of the day, the Razorbacks secured the program’s 10th Drake Relays title with a record-breaking effort in the sprint-medley relay. Regine Williams, Daina Harper, Taylor Ellis-Watson and Chrishuna Williams improved upon the old meet record of 3:45.48 set by Arkansas during the 2012 event. Saturday’s win was the Razorbacks’ second Drake Relays title in the sprint-medley relay.
Arkansas was tied with Ohio State and Oklahoma State at 20 points heading into the 4×400-meter relay. Ellis-Watson, Harper, C. Williams and Brianna Swinton combined for a season-best time of 3:31.35 to cross in first place, nearly three seconds faster than the runner-up. The win was the Razorbacks’ third Drake Relays title in the event and first since 2011 when the team of Gwendolyn Flowers, Regina George, Whitney Jones and Shelise Williams ran 3:28.63 to establish the current meet record.
The Razorbacks now have 11 Drake Relays titles in the program’s history with at least one win in six events. Arkansas has a program-best three titles in the 4×200- and 4×400-meter relays. Saturday also featured top-five finishes by Desiree Frier who was second in the university section of the pole vault and Taliyah Brooks who ran to fifth place in the final of the 100-meter hurdles.
106th Drake Relays, Day 2
Des Moines, Iowa | Drake Stadium
5. Taliyah Brooks – 13.37 (+1.1)
1. Swinton/Harper/C. Williams/Ellis-Watson – 3:31.35 [SB]
1. R. Williams/Harper/Ellis-Watson/C. Williams – 3:43.64 [MR: previous – 3:45.48]
4. Haiss/R. Williams/Simko/Klenke – 11:20.65
2. Desiree Freier – 4.20m/13-9.25
9. Ariel Voskamp – 4.05m/13-3.5
13. Megan Zimlich – 4.05m/13-3.5 [SB]
The Razorbacks’ next home meet is scheduled for May 1 with the Arkansas Twilight at John McDonnell Field. For more information about tickets for home events, call 800-982-HOGS (4647), email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Razorback Ticket Center located just east of Baum Stadium.
Arkansas is one of eight SEC teams in this week’s USTFCCCA top-25 rankings with all eight positioned inside the top 21 spots. To open the postseason campaign, the 2015 SEC Outdoor Championships will be held May 14-16 at Spencer Stadium/Maddox Track in Starkville, Miss.
For more information on Arkansas track and field including in-meet updates, follow @RazorbackTF on Twitter.