UA's Igbokwe just fine in 400 indoor season debut

Posted: January 28, 2018 at 2:19 a.m.

Arkansas runner Obi Igbokwe competes during the Razorback Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2017, in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE -- It was Obi Igbokwe's first time to run the indoor 400 meters this season, and Arkansas men's track, and field Coach Chris Bucknam had instructed him to take it easy over the first half of Saturday's race.

The University of Arkansas, Fayetteville junior sprinter did that, but Igbokwe took off over the final 200 meters and went on to win the invitational portion of that event with a personal-best 45.72 seconds during the 2018 Razorback Invitational.

Razorback Invitational

at Randal Tyson Track Center, Fayetteville

Saturday’s results

Men

Team scores — 1. Texas A&M 88.5; 2. Florida 88; 3. Georgia 73.5; 4. LSU 67; 5. Kansas State 56.5; 6. Florida State 47.5; 7. USC 47; 8. Arkansas 45; 9. Ole Miss 31.5; 10. Oklahoma State 29.5; 11. Iowa State 27.

60 — 1. Cejhae Greene, Georgia, 6.63; 2. TJ Brock, USC, 6.64; 3. Terrell Smith, Kansas State, 6.70; 4. Will Williams, Texas A&M, 6.78; 5. Jullane Walker, Kansas State, 6.78.

400 — 1. Ricky Morgan Jr., USC, 46.80; 2. Kemar Mowatt, Arkansas, 46.83; 3. Jamarco Stephen, Arkansas, 47.27; 4. Chantz Sawyers, Florida, 47.32; 5. Roy Ejiakuekwu, Arkansas, 47.59.

400 invitational — 1. Obi Igbokwe, Arkansas, 45.72; 2. Benjamin Vedel, Florida, 46.14; 3. Kunle Fasasi, Florida, 46.24; 4. Mylik Kerley, Texas A&M, 46.24; 5. Ilolo Izu, Texas A&M, 46.85.

800 — 1. Jack Wilkes, LSU, 1:49.94; 2. Justin Pacifico, Florida, 1:50.21; 3. Humberto Freire, Florida State, 1:50.74; 4. Kyren Hollis, Florida, 1:50.76; 5. Cade Bethmann, Ole Miss, 1:51.44.

800 invitational — 1. Devin Dixon, Texas A&M, 1:49.95; 2. Jaymes Dennison, Iowa State, 1:49.98; 3. Jeramey Hampton, Georgia, 1:50.40; 4. Robert Ford, USC, 1:50.59; 5. Roshon Roomes, Iowa State, 1:50.68.

Mile — 1. Everett Smulders, Ole Miss, 4:06.93; 2. Kyle Levermore, Arkansas, 4:08.31; 3. Henry Dwyer, Georgia, 4:08.33; 4. Kevin Mulcaire, Oklahoma State, 4:08.84; 5. Taylor Clayton, Texas A&M, 4:09.05.

Mile invitational — 1. Dan Curts, Iowa State, 4:03.49; 2. Jack Guyton, Florida, 4:04.50; 3. Bryan Kamau, Georgia, 4:04.61; 4. Waleed Suliman, Ole Miss, 4:04.71; 5. Michael Hall, Florida State, 4:07.87.

3,000 — 1. Colton Donahue, Kansas State, 8:17.06; 2. Magnus Pettersen, Florida, 8:19.99; 3. Greyson Dolezal, Iowa State, 8:21.54; 4. Michael Hans, Georgia 8:26.98; 5. Preston Cates, Arkansas, 8:27.80.

3,000 invitational — 1. Hassan Abdi, Oklahoma State, 8:15.03; 2. Edwin Kurgat, Iowa State, 8:15.06; 3. Alex Riba, Texas A&M, 8:15.44; 4. Caleb Pottorff, Florida State, 8:17.40; 5. Dajour Braxton, LSU, 8:17.45.

60 hurdles — 1. Damion Thomas, LSU, 7.75; 2. Michael Nicholls, Georgia, 7.79; 3. Cory Poole, Florida, 7.84; 4. Larry Donald, Arkansas, 7.92; 5. Marquis Morris, USC, 7.94.

1,600 relay — 1. Texas A&M, 3:09.45; 2. Florida “B”, 3:13.95; 3. LSU, 3:14.17; 4. Oklahoma State, 3:14.28.

1,600 relay invitational — 1. Texas A&M, 3:03.95; 2. LSU, 3:04.92; 3. Arkansas, 3:08.37; 4. Arkansas “B”, 3:09.27; 5. Florida, 3:09.48.

Shot put — 1. Denzel Comenentia, Georgia, 65-4¼; 2. Austin Droogsma, Florida State, 64-7¼; 3. Brett Neelly, Kansas State, 61-4¾; 4. Nicholas Ponzio, USC, 61-3½; 5. Brian Williams, Ole Miss, 60-11¼.

Triple jump — 1. KeAndre Bates, Florida, 54-1; 2. Eric Sloan, USC, 53-7; 3. Armani Wallace, Florida State, 53-1½; 4. Clayton Brown, Florida, 52-4; 5. Da’Quan Bellard, LSU, 51-1.

Women

Team Scores — 1. Arkansas 118; 2. USC 82; 3. Georgia 81; 4. LSU 53.5; 5. Kansas State 53; 6. Ole Miss 50; 7. Texas A&M 45; 8. Florida State 40; 9. Florida 38; 10. Iowa State 36; 11. Oklahoma State 8.5.

60 — 1. Kortnei Johnson, LSU, 7.18; 2. Jada Baylark, Arkansas, 7.24; 3. Twanisha Terry, USC, 7.27; 4. Anglerne Annelus, USC, 7.30; 5. Deanna Hill, USC, 7.32.

400 — 1. Jolie Carbo, Ole Miss, 53.80; 2. Micaiah Ransby, Georgia, 53.88; 3. Glorilisha Carter, Texas A&M, 54.94; 4. Askana Lawrence, LSU, 55.14; 5. Sydney Hammit, Arkansas, 55.37.

400 invitational — 1. Lynna Irby, Georgia, 51.48; 2. Kendall Ellis, USC, 51.53; 3. Sharrika Barnett, Florida, 51.64; 4. Kyra Constantine, USC, 52.77; 5. Taylor Manson, Florida 53.20.

800 — 1. Larkin Chapman, Iowa State, 2:06.18; 2. Amber Tanner, Georgia, 2:06.77; 3. Molly Sughroue, Oklahoma State, 2:07.99; 4. Brittany Parker, Texas A&M, 2:08.94; 5. Jean Jenkins, Texas A&M, 2:09.34.

800 invitational — 1. Jazmine Fray, Texas A&M, 2:02.30; 2. Jasmine Staebler, Iowa State, 2:03.59; 3. Nikki Hiltz, Arkansas, 2:05.16; 4. Ersula Farrow, LSU, 2:05.58; 5. Kaylee Dodd, Oklahoma State, 2:06.27.

Mile — 1. Emma Wren, Kansas State, 4:53.58; 2. Hannah Campbell, Texas A&M, 4:54.89; 3. Caitlin McQuilkin-Bell, Florida, 4:58.19; 4. Lisa Vogelgesang, Ole Miss, 4:59.16; 5. Lauren Perry, Florida, 4:59.52.

Mile invitational — 1. Taylor Werner, Arkansas, 4:39.52; 2. Jessica Drop, Georgia, 4:41.60; 3. Militsa Mircheva, Florida State, 4:44.89; 4. Maddy Reed, Arkansas, 4:45.13; 5. Evelyne Guay, Iowa State, 4:46.72.

3,000 — 1. Addy Lippitt, Georgia, 9:47.27; 2. Megan Schott, Iowa State, 9:52.24; 3. Grace Tavani, Georgia, 9:53.92; 4. Cara Melgares, Kansas State, 9:59.97; 5. Taylor Somers, Oklahoma State, 10:08.30.

3,000 invitational — 1. Devin Clark, Arkansas, 9:21.20; 2. Anne Frisbie, Iowa State, 9:23.45; 3. Amanda Vestri, Iowa State, 9:30.50; 4. Carina Viljoen, Arkansas, 9:30.85; 5. Anna Braswell, Ole Miss, 9:33.39.

60 hurdles — 1. Dior Hall, USC, 7.98; 2. Anna Cockrell, USC, 8.06; 3. Mikiah Brisco, LSU, 8.14; 4. Tonea Marshall, LSU, 8.14; 5. Janeek Brown, Arkansas, 8.20.

1,600 relay — 1. LSU “B”, 3:41.37; 2. Oklahoma State “C”, 3:43.59; 3. Oklahoma State, 3:49.30; 4. Oklahoma State, 4:02.61.

1,600 relay invitational — 1. USC 3:31.25; 2. Texas A&M, 3:32.61; 3. LSU, 3:34.90; 4. Arkansas, 3:36.44; 5. Florida, 3:36.66.

Shot put — 1. Janeah Stewart, Ole Miss, 53-6½; 2. Gleneve Grange, Florida State, 52-4; 3. Breana Jemison, USC, 51-7¼; 4. Taylor Latimer, Kansas State, 48-11; 5. Ieva Zarankaite, Florida State, 48-9½.

Triple jump — 1. Yanis David, Florida, 44-2¾; 2. Shardia Lawrence, Kansas State, 42-11; 3. Darrielle McQueen, Florida, 42-9; 4. Konstantina Romaiou, Kansas State, 42-5¼; 5. Aliyah Johnson, Georgia, 41-11.

Igbokwe ran fast enough to get ahead of Florida junior Kunle Fasasi at the halfway mark, then used the next 100 meters to pull away and set a time that currently ranks the best among NCAA runners and No. 2 in the world this season. Florida's Benjamin Vedel, who won the first heat, finished second at 46.14, followed by Fasasi at 46.24.

"The past few weeks I've been having hamstring issues, so I couldn't quite run like I wanted to," Igbokwe said. "I didn't want to press. I just wanted to go out and get the lead at the 200, so I was good. At the end, I brought it home, just like coach told me to."

Igbokwe's victory, as well as a second-place finish by Gabe Moore in the heptathlon, were the highlights for a short-handed Arkansas team that finished eighth out of 11 teams with 45 points. Texas A&M edged Florida by an 88.5-88 margin to win the meet, thanks to the Aggies' victory in the last scored event -- the 1,600 invitational relay -- while the Gators finished fifth, just .21 seconds behind Arkansas' B team.

Bucknam said his team went into the meet with a conservative approach. Arkansas already had competed in meets the past two weekends, and a number of athletes were dealing with injuries and illness.

"We have a good team, and the score is no indication of where we hope to end up," Bucknam said. "We have another month until the SEC Championship, and as I said in a conference earlier this week, we have a pitch count on some of our guys. You didn't see a lot of stars out there because we don't want to lose them for the end of the season."

On the women's side, Arkansas' mixture of experience and youth meshed well, particularly in the distance races, as the Razorbacks earned a convincing victory. Arkansas finished with 113 points, followed by Southern California with 82 and Georgia with 81.

The Razorbacks trailed Georgia 73-64 before Devin Clark turned a winning time of 9:21.20 in the 3,000 invitational and sparked a 1-4-6-8 finish in that event that netted 18 points. Sophomore Taylor Werner added to that when she won the mile invitational in 4:39.52 while fellow sophomore Maddy Reed took fourth.

"I think this is a tribute to some of these young people that really took care of business," Arkansas Coach Lance Harter said. "... We have these competitive great efforts, like Taylor Werner in the mile. The idea is we're posting these marks, one after another, and it shows our team is evolving and in a positive way. Now we're on schedule for the SEC meet."

Sports on 01/28/2018