UPDATE: Following a successful protest after theopening round of the 1,500 meters, Dorian Ulrey was moved on to thefinal round of the event. That final is scheduled for Saturday at 4:50 p.m. (CT).
FAYETTEVILLE – Members of the University of Arkansas men’s track and field program kicked off the team’s competition at the 2011 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships Thursday. The Razorbacks saw action in the 1,500 meters and junior decathlon. The national meet is being contested through Sunday at Historic Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
In the semifinals of the 1,500 meters, Dorian Ulrey finished fifth in his heat with a time of 3:41.28, good for the 10th-fastest of the qualifying round. However, the 2011 Razorback senior was initially out of contention after three runners ran slower automatic qualifiers. Ulrey was later advanced after a protest was filed. The time for Ulrey is a season best by more than one second. Duncan Phillips, scheduled to run the 1,500 meters, did not start.
Off a 10th-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships to cap his freshman season, Kevin Lazas is currently in second place with 4,103 points after day one of the junior decathlon. During the day, he posted wins in the long jump (24-1.5) and shot put (50-0) and had a personal-best mark in the high jump (6-6.25). In the junior decathlon, the competitors are using junior-sized implements in the shot put, discus and 110-meter hurdles.
In the overall standings, Lazas trails only incoming Arkansas freshman Gunnar Nixon who leads the two-day competition with 4,192 points. He won three of the five events Thursday with victories in the 100 meters, 400 meters and high jump. Nixon and Lazas are the only two competitors in the field over the 4,000-point mark at the half-way point.
Two former Razorbacks was also in action Thursday with Tyson Gay in the first-round of the 100 meters and Nkosinza Balumbu in the finals of the triple jump. Gay turned in the third-fastest time during qualifying, crossing the line in a time of 10.01 to advance Friday’s semifinal and potentially the finals which will be run approximately two hours later. In the triple jump, Balumbu finished sixth overall with a day’s best 55-0.25.
James Strang, former distance runner for Arkansas, is scheduled to compete later Thursday night in the finals of the 10,000 meters. Competition at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships continue Friday morning. Follow the action that will be televised Friday at 10 p.m. (CT) on ESPN2. For continued coverage and more information, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
USA Championships – Thursday resultsJunior Decathlon (day one)2. Kevin Lazas – 4,103 points3. 100m – 11.11 (836 points)1. Long jump – 24-1.5 (898 points)1. Shot put – 50-0 (804 points)4. High jump – 6-6.25 (794 points)7. 400m – 50.95 (771 points)
1,500m (semifinal)10. Dorian Ulrey – 3:41.28 (Q)– Duncan Phillips – DNS
2011-12 SigneeJunior Decathlon (day one)1. Gunnar Nixon – 4,192 points1. 100m – 11.03 (854 points)2. Long jump – 23-11.5 (886 points)2. Shot put – 42-11.5 (673 points)1. High jump – 7-0.25 (934 points)1. 400m – 49.35 (845 points)
Former Razorbacks100m (first round)3. Tyson Gay – 10.01 (Q)
Triple Jump (final)6. Nkosinza Balumbu – 55-0.25