FAYETTEVILLE — The No. 12 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team will welcome four teams to Fayetteville Saturday for the John McDonnell Invitational in Fayetteville. Field events at the scored competition begin at 10 a.m. (CT), while running events–all finals–are scheduled for a 5 p.m. start. Including the Razorbacks, the five-team field will feature four top-25 teams.
General admission for Razorback track and field home meets during the regular season is $5 and will be sold at the northwest entrance at John McDonnell Field. Fans 17 years and younger are admitted free and University of Arkansas students get in free with their valid student ID.
In this week’s release of the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) top-25 national poll, the Razorbacks are the No. 12 team in the country, down one spot from last week’s ranking. Based on this week’s rankings, the John McDonnell Invitational will feature four ranked teams with Arkansas, top-ranked Kansas, No. 3 Texas A&M and No. 24 Oklahoma. The meet will also include Oklahoma State.
“I think you can attribute having this type of field to having Coach McDonnell’s name on this meet,” head coach Lance Harter said. “Kansas and Texas A&M both have great squads and we’ll meet up with them in some key events. As we go through the season, the most important this is for our athletes to be ready for the postseason and this type of meet helps us gear up for that.”
In individual event rankings, the Razorbacks have six top-10 national performances including NCAA-leading marks of 52.17 from Sparkle McKnight at 400 meters and 5,882 points from Makeba Alcide in the heptathlon. Arkansas also has top-10 showings from Alcide in the high jump, McKnight in the 400-meter hurdles, Regina George at 800 meters and the team’s 4×400-meter relay.
Between the five teams in the field and the athletes entered in their primary events, Saturday’s meet will feature a total of 10 top-10 national performers. George is schedule to run her first open 400 meters of the outdoor season, while Elkins, Ark., native Grace Heymsfield is set to make her outdoor-season debut with a run at 1,500 meters.
Coverage of the John McDonnell Invitational will include live results by FlashResults, a video stream as part of the RazorVision subscription and an interactive blog that will begin at 5 p.m. to coincide with the start of Saturday’s running events.
Saturday’s meet will be scored using the 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 point system. For more information regarding Razorback track and field or University of Arkansas athletics, please log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Fans can also keep up with Arkansas cross country and track and field through the team’s sport-specific RazorbackTF Facebook and Twitter pages.
Download: WTR Weekly Update_April 9.pdf