Campbell and Owen claim two wins at the Red Raider Open
LUBBOCK, Texas— Two wins for the Razorbacks included a college-leading performance by Nastassja Campbell in the pole vault, while Quinn Owen broke a competition record by claiming the mile during Texas Tech’s Red Raider Open held at the Sports Performance Center on Friday.
A second performance by Arkansas in the 4×400 relay generated a time that ranks fourth all-time at UA and currently ranks second on the 2022 world list.
“Overall, I think we’ve taken a step in the right direction,” said Chris Johnson, assistant head coach for the Arkansas women’s team. “Of course we always want to do a bit more and do a bit better, but overall the effort was there. They went out and competed hard in a new environment outside of our amazing indoor facility.
“It was a good meeting and it was a good eye opener for the young ladies to see where we are and where we want to be and there is still a lot of work to do to get to that point.”
Campbell set an indoor career best and collegiate lead mark with 14-7.25 (4.45) to lead a Razorbacks 1-2-4-6-7 finish under a 16-man field in the pole vault . Campbell moved up to No. 5 on the UA all-time list, where he ties with alum Desiree Freier and current teammate Bailee McCorkle.
Campbell took the collegiate lead for 2022 this weekend, beating the previous collegiate best of 14-5.5 (4.41) set by Stephen F. Austin’s Erica Ellis in December. She is also currently ranked sixth on the 2022 Indoor World List.
Campbell’s efforts improved on her previous indoor best of 14-4.75 (4.39), set back in 2019 when she competed at SFA. She had a first attempt clearance at 14-3.25 (4.35), her third indoor razorback best. Then she managed her winning height on the second attempt.
Campbell moved the bar to 14-11 (4.55) and attempted to set an all-time high as her outdoor best as of 2021 measures 14-10.75 (4.54), which also ranks #5 on the outdoor UA all-time list is up.
“I jumped 4.39 my freshman year, so I was really trying to get over 4.40 indoors,” Campbell said. “It felt good to get some consistency. My mindset is more of trying to get back to how I jumped in the Summer Olympics where 4.50 was a constant bar for me. I think that was a really good step in the right direction.
“My second attempt with 4.55 was definitely the closest. My third try was a slightly different jump, but it was still a good try. Jumping at that height for my second competition of the indoor season feels really good. So I’m happy where I am.”
Elien Vekemans finished second and set a career best of 14-3.25 (4.35) to improve on her Belgium U23 national record and move up to No. 10 on the UA all-time list with April Steiner. The previous indoor best for Vekemans was 14-1.25 (4.30), set in December during her win at the Wooo Pig Classic.
On the all-time Belgian indoor list, Vekemans is now number 2 and the same number 7.
“I was really excited for Elien,” Campbell noted. “From a brief approach to PR in December and then having another PR today was really great to see that for them. She had some good jumps today.”
Johnson added: “Nastassja set up her PR in the hall which was fantastic and Elien set up a PR too so she looked good too. The other women have been fighting hard and Coach Compton is running this group well.
The rest of the Razorback crew in the pole vault included McCorkle in fourth place and Kaitlyn Banas in sixth place, both doing 13-5.25 (4.10), while Mackenzie Hayward was 12-11.5 (3.95 ) finished seventh.
Owen won the mile in a record 4:51.15 and led the field by four and a half seconds while eclipsing the 2020 record of 4:53.71 set by NJCAA champion Flomena Asekol of New Mexico JC .
Owen’s split times in the race included 1:09.97, 1:13.40 [2:23.37], 1:14.38 [3:37.75], and 1:13.40. Second behind Owen was Abilene Christian’s Irene Rono in 4:55.69 while SMU’s Steffi Jones was third in 5:05.18.
The Arkansas quartet of Paris Peoples (53.79), Rosey Effiong (51.91), Morgan Burks-Magee (51.90) and Shafiqua Maloney (51.49) produced a time of 3:29.09 in the 4th minute ×400 relay to finish behind a 3:28.62 World leader from Kentucky. Texas (3:31.26) and LSU (3:35.69) finished third and fourth in the section.
“Kentucky went out and had a great race and rode a little better than us,” Johnson noted. “Our ladies fought and fought hard. There are some things we need to clean up and recalibrate. In terms of effort, I am very proud of the effort. They know they can compete with the best in the country.”
Effiong finished second in the 400m and won her section in 52.56, currently third among colleges this season behind teammate Shafiqua Maloney in 52.33. Kennedy Simon of Texas won another heat in a college-leading 52.15 for the overall.
Also among the Razorbacks who ran the 400m were Burks-Magee (52.73), Wilson (52.81) and Peoples (53.83), who placed sixth, eighth and 12th respectivelyth Total. Wilson joined Effiong in winning her run.
In the 60m hurdles, Yoveinny Mota and Jayla Hollis finished third and fourth with times of 8.13 and 8.14. In the preliminary rounds, Hollis posted a career best of 8.11 and moved up to No. 5 on the UA all-time list as she improved on her previous PR of 8.15 from 2021.
LSU’s Alia Armstrong won the hurdles final in 7.96, with Kentucky’s Masai Russell second in 8.01.
Jada Baylark finished third in the 60-meter final with a season best of 7.21 behind Texas’ Julien Alfred, who produced a 7.10 college leader that also matches the current world best while breaking facility records (7.13) broke and surpassed (7.17). Abby Steiner of Kentucky was second in 7.17. Behind Baylark was LSU’s Favor Ofili with a 7.26.
Baylark also finished fourth in the 200m with a 23.39, while Razorback rookie Joanne Reid won her run in 23.76 to finish sixth overall, improving on her 23.94 indoor debut last week.
Razorback rookie Ashanti Denton won the B section of the 200m with a career best 24.07.
With a career best jump of 40-2 (12.24), Alexis Torns placed fourth in the competition, moving her to 11th on the UA all-time list. Torns took the overall lead when she was the first jumper to show her PR in the second round. Last week, Torns had a career-high 39-5 (1/12) during the Arkansas Invitational.
“Alexis, breaking that 40-foot mark is tremendous for her,” Johnson noted. “That showed signs of aggression and I think she was quite happy with that.”
A second group of Razorbacks won a segment of the 4×400 relay that included B relay teams, turning a 3:35.07 against Texas (3:38.59) and LSU (3:45.63) and finishing fourth overall in the event among the 20 participating teams. Splits for the UA roster included Wilson (54.37), Hollis (52.00), Baylark (54.06) and Reid (54.64).