Razorbacks Take DMR and 4×1,500-meter Relay Cr
BY ANDRES FOCIL
AUSTIN, Texas – Arkansas concluded the 76th Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays on a high note as it won its third relay title on the weekend in the 4×1,500-meter relay. The Razorbacks dominated the field when they finished first with a time of 15:11.07. The second place team, Indiana, was 100 yards behind with 15:29.35. It was also the fifth-consecutive year and the 16th time in 26 years the Hogs had won the event at the Texas Relays.
Sophomore Michael Taylor ran the first leg in the middle of the pack at the beginning, but then pulled ahead of Wisconsin with 400 meters left. Taylor posted a 3:50.6 split as he handed off to senior Daniel Lincoln. Lincoln put the Hogs into a clear lead with a 3:47.4 split and by the time he passed the baton to junior Chris Mulvaney the race was over. Mulvaney cruised around the track with a 3:47.3 split, at least 100 meters ahead of the rest of the field. Junior Alistair Cragg anchored the relay to bring them the title with the fastest split time of 3:45.8.
“I’m really pleased with these guys,” Arkansas head coach John McDonnell said. “It was a good time and it’s hard to get motivated to run fast when there’s no competition. The distance medley relay also had good times. Taylor ran well, even with no speed work up to this point and Daniel could have run faster, except that he got bumped in the beginning. Overall, it was a solid performance for this early in the season.”
Late Friday night the Razorbacks captured the distance medley relay title for the third-straight year while breaking the Mike A. Myers Stadium record with a time of 9:32.50. SMU held the previous record with a time of 9:36.33 in 1999. It marked the 10th time in 19 years an Arkansas team has won the event.
Lincoln led the relay in the 1,200-meter portion and pulled the Hogs to the front with a split time of 2:55.8. Lincoln handed off the junior transfer Maurice Bridges who ran a 47.3 in the 400 meters. Bridges then passed the baton to Taylor who powered around the track, extending Arkansas’ lead with a split time of 1:48.9 in the 800. Cragg anchored the 1,600-meter leg of the DMR and easily outran the rest of the competition with a split of 4:00.5, for the victory.
Bridges also competed in the finals of the 400-meter hurdles. He crossed the line in sixth, improving his regional qualifying time with a season-best 52.07.
In the triple jump senior Richard Smith and sophomore Jaanus Uudmae competed in the event and both earned regional qualifying marks. Smith posted a jump of 51-8.50 for fifth and Uudmae was right behind in sixth with 51-8.25.
Sophomore Ahmad Carroll ran in the finals of the 100-meter dash and crossed the line in seventh with a time of 10.43. Even though it was good enough to qualify for regionals, the wind reading of 3.0 was too high for an official time.
Senior Eddie Jackson and junior Michael Thomas both registered times of 13.85 in the 110-meter hurdles, but in different sections. Thomas ran in the finals of the men’s university division to come in third and Jackson ran in the university invitational division for second place.
Junior Silverus Kimeli and sophomore Jason Sandfort competed in the last running event, the mile, for the Hogs on Saturday. Kimeli finished fifth (4:09.82) and Sandfort was seventh (4:13.50).
After Arkansas returns from Austin, Texas it will prepare to host the McDonnell Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., on April 12. Field events are scheduled to start at 9 a.m., with the first running event beginning at 2 p.m.
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