John McDonnell InvitationalFayetteville, Ark.April 13, 2013
1. #2 ARKANSAS – 1371. #22 Minnesota – 1373. #1 Texas A&M – 1294. #15 Oklahoma – 735. Kansas – 626. Oklahoma State – 32
FAYETTEVILLE — The No. 2 University of Arkansas men’s track and field team collected five wins on its way to a first-place tie in the team standings Saturday at the John McDonnell Invitational in Fayetteville. The Razorbacks were paced by two wins by Tarik Batchelor in the long jump and triple jump. At the end of the meet, the Razorbacks and No. 22 Minnesota were tied atop the scoreboard with 137 points each.
In addition to Batchelor’s efforts, Arkansas also had first-place performances from Akheem Gauntlett at 200 meters, Marek Niit at 400 meters and Anthony May II in the high jump. Behind Arkansas and Minnesota in the team standings, top-ranked Texas A&M finished third with 129 points, No. 15 Oklahoma was fourth with 73 points, Kansas placed fifth with 62 points and Oklahoma State was sixth with 32 points.
“We got a lot accomplished today,” head coach Chris Bucknam said. “We had last week off so we were shaking the rust off a little bit. We’ve been working awfully hard and I’m sure I’m speaking for the other coaches, too, because we’re all in the same situation. This month is going to be a heavy work load. It was good to see our 4×1 and 4×4 get around, and everything in between those two events went well. It’s like I said earlier this week, I still believe that no matter what we do, we want to win the meet. I love the fact that there’s finality to the meet and you can see a score.”
Batchelor began his day with a victory in the long jump, getting out to a day’s best mark of 7.90m/25-11 on his third pass down the runway. All three jumps measured for the Razorback senior were beyond the 25-foot mark. Batchelor returned to the track and need just one jump to secure a win in the triple jump. On his first jump, he was measured at 15.76m/51-8.5 which was enough to secure the win. Saturday’s marked his first long-triple double of the 2013 season, indoor or outdoor.
“I think I did a pretty good job in both events today,” Batchelor said. “Right now, I’m just starting to get used to doubling up and adding the long jump. I jumped 7.90 (meters) today which is a pretty good jump for me coming back and using my left leg again. It was a good competition for me. I’m just trying to get myself back into it and take it in stride.”
Arkansas’ first win of the day came on the infield with a win from May in the high jump. The Razorback junior had a final clearance of 2.18m/7-1.75 to win the event and help Arkansas to a 1-2 finish with teammate Noah Kittelson in second. With the victory in hand, May took a pair of attempts at 2.21m/7-3 before passing on his final try at the last bar.
Niit was the Razorbacks’ first winner on the track with his effort at 400 meters. As the team’s only representative in the event, he won section two and was first overall with a winning time of 46.92. Gauntlett used a charge over the final half of the 200 meters to surpass Waymon Storey of Oklahoma and Michael Bryan of Texas A&M at the tape. He finished with a first-place time of 20.79, the fastest 200-meter time by a Razorback this season.
In the first running event of the day, the 4×100-meter team of Gauntlett, Niit, Caleb Cross and Jarrion Lawson combined for a season-best time of 39.51. The effort was worth a second-place finish in the race and based on times entering the weekend, represents the sixth-fastest time in the NCAA this season. It was one of Arkansas five runner-up finishes during the day.
Along with the 4×100-meter relay team and Kittelson in the high jump, the Razorbacks had second-place results from Gauntlett at 100 meters, Anthony Lieghio at 800 meters and the 4×400-meter relay team of Niit, Gauntlett, Anton Kokorin and Neil Braddy. The finished the meet with a season-best time of 3:07.20.
With the John McDonnell Invitational in the books, the second-ranked Razorback men will continue their outdoor season next weekend with a trip to Eugene, Ore. The dual meet will take place April 19-20 as part of the 2013 Oregon Relays at Hayward Field. The event will mark Arkansas’ first of two scheduled trips to the Northwest this season with the University of Oregon serving as the host of the 2013 NCAA Championships in June.
For more information regarding Razorback track and field or University of Arkansas athletics, please visit 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.
Saturday Results100 Meters2. Akheem Gauntlett — 10.46 (+4.3)200 Meters1. Akheem Gauntlett — 20.79 (+2.1)7. Neil Braddy — 21.32 (+2.1)8. Anton Kokorin — 21.33 (+2.9)9. Caleb Cross — 21.37 (+2.1)13. David Wren — 22.07 (+2.6)15. Nathanael Franks — 22.43 (+2.6)16. Kevin Lazas — 22.83 (+2.6)17. Julius Sommer — 22.84 (+2.6)400 Meters1. Marek Niit — 46.92800 Meters2. Anthony Lieghio — 1:49.353. Patrick Rono — 1:49.504. Ryan Thomas — 1:49.875. Kemoy Campbell — 1:50.769. Andrew Pisechko — 1:51.4512. Drew Butler — 1:52.1316. Tomas Squella — 1:54.33–. Leoman Momoh — DNF 1,500 Meters4. Stanley Kebenei — 3:47.2415. Solomon Haile — 3:55.4319. David Flynn — 3:57.853,000 Meters3. Raymond Joseph — 8:48.71110m Hurdles3. Caleb Cross — 13.69 (+2.1)7. Noah Kittelson — 15.33 (+2.1)4x100m Relay2. Cross/Lawson/Gauntlett/Niit — 39.513. Lazas/Braddy/Wren/Kokorin — 41.004x400m Relay2. Niit/Gauntlett/Kokorin/Braddy — 3:07.205. Franks/Cross/Wren/Momoh — 3:17.30High Jump1. Anthony May II — 2.18m/7-1.752. Noah Kittelson — 2.12m/6-11.55. Dwayne Golbek — 2.07m/6-9.55. Brede Ellingsen — 2.07m/6-9.5Pole Vault–. Andrew Irwin — NH –. Kevin Lazas — NH Long Jump1. Tarik Batchelor — 7.90m/25-11 (+2.8)8. Julius Sommer — 6.81m/22-4.25 (+2.2)–. Jarrion Lawson — NM Triple Jump1. Tarik Batcehlor — 15.76m/51-8.5 (+2.7)4. Raymond Higgs — 14.83m/48-8 (+2.4)Shot Put6. Devin Randall — 15.76m/51-8.5Discus4. Devin Randall — 51.40m/168-8 [PR — prev: 163-5]7. Nathanael Franks — 42.01m/137-108. Kevin Lazas — 41.99m/137-9 [PR — prev: 136-3]Javelin4. Pete Mirocke — 61.45m/201-7
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