FAYETTEVILLE – Tina Sutej, a junior pole vaulter for the No. 6 University of Arkansas women’s track and field team, has been added to the watch list for the Bowerman Award, as announced Thursday by the award’s watch list committee in conjunction with the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The Bowerman is awarded each year to the top male and female collegiate athlete in the sport of NCAA track and field.
"Anytime you can be recognized, not only within your respective event, but also overall among track and field’s best, it is a supreme honor," head coach Lance Harter said. "Tina has put together a great start to the season and we’re excited and proud to see her recognized."
Sutej is the national leader in the pole vault with her clearance of 14-7.25 last weekend at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational. In four events this season, she has come away with a victory in each competition, posting a minimum winning clearance of 14-3.25. In the last two meets, she has taken attempts at the collegiate record. Sutej has collected two SEC Female Field Athlete of the Week honors this season.
The Ljubljana, Slovenia, native owns the top five indoor marks in school history, tied with former Razorbacks April Steiner and Katie Stripling at 14-3.25 for the No. 5 clearance all-time at Arkansas. Sutej is the defending SEC indoor champion, setting a conference meet and Arkansas record of 14-7.5 in the process.
This is the first updated release of the watch list for the 2011 Bowerman Award; the original list was revealed Jan. 13. Sutej is one of three student-athletes added to the list with LaKya Brookins of South Carolina and Neely Spence of Shippensburg. With Sutej, Brookins and Semoy Hackett of LSU, the SEC occupies three spots on the 10-person list.
Sutej returns to competition this weekend when the Razorbacks host the Tyson Invitational at the Randal Tyson Center in Fayetteville. The women’s invitational pole vault is scheduled for a 7 p.m. (CT) start Friday. For more information and complete schedule, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.