Track Town, USA. Fayetteville, Arkansas.
For the first time this time.
Already a well-established power with several national championships in men’s track, the Razorbacks women’s program staked its claim as the best on the planet Saturday.
The Arkansas women’s team won their first NCAA Track & Field Outdoor championship in school history that afternoon on the west coast, at the home of perhaps the most powerful women’s track school in the country, Oregon. In fact, it was those Ducks that came in second to Arkansas, 72 points to 62.
Dominique Scott-Efurd’s title in 5,000-meter run clinched the championship just two days after she captured the victory in the 10,000-meter race. In taking both she became the first female to win each at the same meet since 2010.
Arkansas’ men’s program has 12 outdoor national titles and another four runner-up finishes. The women had never had either until Saturday.
The championship was bolstered by Taylor Ellis-Watson’s second-place finish in the 400-meter race, Jessica Kamilos’ second-place in the steeplechase and the 1,600-meter relay team’s runner-up ranking, as well.
Oregon had beaten Arkansas at the indoor championships earlier this year.
Lawson grabs three national titles
One just ain’t enough, Jack. Better make it three.
One long jump. One 100. One 200.
Jarrion Lawson’s company includes Jesse Owens and no one else after the Arkansas track and field star — a title he earned Friday — captured three national championships at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
The long jump one he earned Wednesday. The sprints titles he took home within an hour of each other Friday. His 10.22-second time in the 100-meter dash was topped only by his 20.19-second time in the 200 less than an hour later. With the three titles, he became the first athlete since Owens to win all three 80 years ago.
Even with Lawson’s 31.5 points, they were not enough for the Razorbacks to win the team national title. They came in second, behind Florida, which claimed the crown with a second-place finish in the day’s final event, the 4x400 relay. Until that race, Arkansas had the lead with 56 points. Florida won the meet with 62. Texas A&M finished third with 50.
Lawson finishes his Arkansas career with six personal titles, earning them previously in the indoor long jump and relays. He will take part in the Olympic Trials back at Hayward Field, which held the NCAA Championships this year, next month. He’ll go for the United States team in all three events he won Friday.
Frankline Tonui finished in second-place in the 5,000-meter steeplechase for Arkansas, as well.
The Arkansas women’s track and field team will finish its season Saturday. They currently lead the field with 26 points, 10 ahead of Texas A&M, with six of 21 events having been scored so far.