Lady Razorbacks finish 3rd, Razorbacks 7th at SEC Outdoor Track Championships - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Lady Razorbacks finish 3rd, Razorbacks 7th at SEC Outdoor Track Championships

Knoxville, TN (UofA) - Region 8 standouts Katie Stripling (Jonesboro) and Caleb Cross (Newport) competed at the SEC Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

Lady Razorbacks (3rd, 98.5 points)

Propelled by two individual titles and two runner-up finishes, No. 11 Arkansas Razorback women's track and field finished third at the 2010 SEC Outdoor Championships, in Knoxville, Tenn., on Sunday.

Jonesboro High standout Katie Stripling was a part of a Hogs 1-2-3 finish in the pole vault. She is still the NCAA leader in the event, with a personal best this year of 14 feet, 5.5 inches.

LSU won the team race with 132 points, Florida was second with 107.5 points and Arkansas rounded out the top three with 98.5 points. The Hogs won individual event titles in the 4x400-meter relay and the pole vault (Tina Sutej) and picked up runner-up finishes in the 400 meters (Shelise Williams) and the pole vault (Janice Keppler).

"To get third in this meet, we are really pleased," head coach Lance Harter said. "LSU and Florida have an arsenal of weapons. We had to have our young kids step up to a new level and they did that. The 4x400-meter relay dug deeper than they ever have before. Getting that win was just the icing on the cake for a really great weekend. We had some spectacular individual performances that helped us get this third-place team finish."

The Razorbacks won the final running event of the day, the 4x400-meter relay, to sweep the SEC indoor and outdoor titles in the event. The quartet of sophomore Whitney Jones, Williams, senior Karen Thomas and freshman Regina George clocked a season-best and NCAA-leading time of 3:31.05.

Williams also picked up a runner-up finish in the 400 meters (52.60) and a sixth-place finish in the 200 meters (23.97). George also competed in both open events. She finished fifth in the 400 meters (53.25) and seventh in the 200 meters (24.01).

In the first running event of the day, the 4x100-meter relay, freshman Gwendolyn Flowers, George, Williams and Jones earned a bronze finish with a time of 45.25.

Junior Shantel Thompson added a fifth-place finish in the triple jump to her eighth-place finish in the long jump from Saturday. Thompson's best jump of the day measured 41-5, a personal best.

In the finals of the 1,500 meters, sophomore Kristen Gillespie was fourth with a time of 4:22.94 and sophomore Samantha Learch was fifth with a personal-best time of 4:23.09. Sophomore Brittany Hyter finished sixth in the finals of the 100-meter hurdles. She clocked a time of 13.78.

Freshman Stephanie Brown matched her indoor performance with a fifth-place finish in the 800 meters. She clocked a personal-best time of 2:05.28. With a time of 16:33.81, junior Miranda Walker finished sixth in the 5,000 meters.

The Razorbacks will compete next at the NCAA West preliminary rounds, May 27-29, in Austin, Texas.

Razorbacks (7th, 64 points)

No. 25 Arkansas Razorback men's track and field picked up an individual title in the long jump, a runner-up finish in the high jump and a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters at the 2010 SEC Outdoor Championships, in Knoxville, Tenn.

The Hogs' 4x400-meter relay finished seventh as freshman and former Newport High standout Caleb Cross, junior LaShawn Butler, junior Chris Bilbrew and sophomore Ben Skidmore combined for a time of 3:09.12. Arkansas' 4x100-meter relay finished ninth. Cross, Bourke, Butler and freshman Cobi Hamilton combined for a season-best time of 40.25.

Florida won the team race with 124 points, LSU was second with 100 points and South Carolina rounded out the top three with 89 points. The Razorbacks finished seventh with 64 points. The Hogs picked up an individual title in the long jump (Alain Bailey), a runner-up finish in the high jump (Brede Raa Ellingsen) and a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters (Eric Fernandez).

"We are here with a young team and we'll find out soon if this experience will pay off," head coach Chris Bucknam said. "We'll learn from it. I'm not going to sugarcoat it; we got beat. We have a lot of work to do and we need to improve. But I think this will pay dividends for us next year. This young team got their first taste of SEC experience and their first taste of defeat. We'll see how they respond but I think with this group, it will be a positive response."

"We need to see how these guys respond to adversity," Bucknam said. "This group is not where we aspire to be but we did have some outstanding individual efforts. And this was the perfect learning environment, with the weather and the delays, for our young team. This was key for their progression."

Freshman Brede Raa Ellingsen earned a runner-up finish in the high jump and bettered his fourth-place finish from the SEC Indoor Championships. He cleared 7-1.5. Sophomore Tarik Batchelor finished fourth in the triple jump with a season-best mark of 51-0. Sophomore Stuart Sparks finished fifth in the pole vault with a clearance of 15-11. Sophomore Justin Holmes finished ninth in the discus with a toss of 158-9.

Freshman Eric Fernandez earned a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters with a time of 14:08.38. Freshman Solomon Haile was fifth in a time of 14:11.89. Russell finished 18th (14:40.68) and senior Rio Reina was 23rd (14:47.01).

In the finals of the 1,500 meters, junior Michael Chinchar finished fifth in 3:52.06, sophomore Duncan Phillips finished sixth in 3:52.32 and junior Patrick Russell was 12th in 3:54.23.

Freshman Hunter Bourke was sixth in the 400-meter hurdles. He clocked a time of 53.35. Sophomore Andrew Pennington had trouble with the first hurdle in the 110-meter hurdles and never regained his footing. He finished the race in 19.06 but still managed a seventh-place finish.

The Hogs' 4x400-meter relay finished seventh as freshman Caleb Cross, junior LaShawn Butler, junior Chris Bilbrew and sophomore Ben Skidmore combined for a time of 3:09.12. Arkansas' 4x100-meter relay finished ninth. Cross, Bourke, Butler and freshman Cobi Hamilton combined for a season-best time of 40.25.

The Razorbacks will compete next at the NCAA West preliminary rounds, May 27-29, in Austin, Texas. No. 25 Arkansas Razorback men's track and field picked up an individual title in the long jump, a runner-up finish in the high jump and a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters at the 2010 SEC Outdoor Championships, in Knoxville, Tenn.

Florida won the team race with 124 points, LSU was second with 100 points and South Carolina rounded out the top three with 89 points. The Razorbacks finished seventh with 64 points. The Hogs picked up an individual title in the long jump (Alain Bailey), a runner-up finish in the high jump (Brede Raa Ellingsen) and a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters (Eric Fernandez).

"We are here with a young team and we'll find out soon if this experience will pay off," head coach Chris Bucknam said. "We'll learn from it. I'm not going to sugarcoat it; we got beat. We have a lot of work to do and we need to improve. But I think this will pay dividends for us next year. This young team got their first taste of SEC experience and their first taste of defeat. We'll see how they respond but I think with this group, it will be a positive response."

"We need to see how these guys respond to adversity," Bucknam said. "This group is not where we aspire to be but we did have some outstanding individual efforts. And this was the perfect learning environment, with the weather and the delays, for our young team. This was key for their progression."

Freshman Brede Raa Ellingsen earned a runner-up finish in the high jump and bettered his fourth-place finish from the SEC Indoor Championships. He cleared 7-1.5. Sophomore Tarik Batchelor finished fourth in the triple jump with a season-best mark of 51-0. Sophomore Stuart Sparks finished fifth in the pole vault with a clearance of 15-11. Sophomore Justin Holmes finished ninth in the discus with a toss of 158-9.

Freshman Eric Fernandez earned a bronze finish in the 5,000 meters with a time of 14:08.38. Freshman Solomon Haile was fifth in a time of 14:11.89. Russell finished 18th (14:40.68) and senior Rio Reina was 23rd (14:47.01).

In the finals of the 1,500 meters, junior Michael Chinchar finished fifth in 3:52.06, sophomore Duncan Phillips finished sixth in 3:52.32 and junior Patrick Russell was 12th in 3:54.23.

Freshman Hunter Bourke was sixth in the 400-meter hurdles. He clocked a time of 53.35. Sophomore Andrew Pennington had trouble with the first hurdle in the 110-meter hurdles and never regained his footing. He finished the race in 19.06 but still managed a seventh-place finish.

The Razorbacks will compete next at the NCAA West preliminary rounds, May 27-29, in Austin, Texas.

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