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Hogs Gymnastics

Hambrick leads Gymbacks past Missouri; first SEC win on road since ’17

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Sophomore Kennedy Hambrick led the Arkansas gymnastics team to its first road SEC win since Feb. 2017.

With an all-around score of 39.275, Hambrick scored team-highs on the bars, vault, and floor – tying her career-high 9.925 on the floor to help lead Arkansas to the victory.

Hambrick’s all-around score earned her the all-around title, her first of the 2020 season and second of her career. Freshman Kiara Gianfagna and senior Jessica Yamzon also competed all-around, finishing third and fourth among those competitors.

Rotation 1 | Bars
Hambrick scored a team-high 9.800 for Arkansas in the five slot, executing her jaegar to immediate overshoot beautifully. The Razorbacks finished the first rotation with a 48.850, trailing Missouri after their 49.175 performance on the vault.

Rotation 2 | Vault
A strong vault performance from Hambrick anchored the Razorbacks again as Arkansas closed out the second rotation with a team score of 48.800. A couple of Missouri miscues would give the Gymbacks the lead midway through the meet, 97.650-97.350.

Rotation 3 | Floor
Arkansas shined on the floor as usual and Hambrick continued her successful night as she flaunted her power and nailed her roundoff back-handspring double-pike last pass. Hambrick tied her career high with a 9.925 on the floor and Arkansas pushed their lead to 147.050 – 145.700 with a 49.400 in the event. Redshirt-freshman Bailey Lovett scored a 9.900, making it her third routine of 9.900 or better this season.

Rotation 4 | Beam
Junior Sophia Carter had a great night on the beam for the Gymbacks, setting a season-high with a score of 9.925 on the apparatus and taking home the beam title. Carter’s back handspring layout step-out wowed the judges and helped Arkansas to its 48.975 team score and 196.025 all-around. The beam title is the first for Carter in 2020, but the eighth of her career.

Up Next | Friday vs. Georgia at Barnhill Arena at 7 p.m.

Information from Razorback Sports Communications is included in this story.

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Hogs Men's Track-Field

Career-best long jump gets runner-up spot for Nairn at Razorback Invitational

FAYETTEVILLE — A career-best long jump of 26-0¾ (7.94) earned runner-up honors for Laquan Nairn during the first day of the Razorback Invitational while the Arkansas distance medley relay placed third with a time of 9:40.15.

Nairn only attempted a pair of jumps since he will return to contest the triple jump on Saturday as he finished in second place behind a 26-6 ½ (8.09) effort by LSU’s Rayvon Grey.

The opening round jump of 26-0 ¾ by Nairn improved his previous indoor best of 25-10 (7.87) set in 2018.

“I was really pleased with Laquan in the long jump,” said Arkansas men’s coach Chris Bucknam. “He put a big one out there early and is going to triple jump tomorrow, so he limited his attempts today. I’m just really, really happy for him in watching him start to put everything together.”

The Razorback distance medley relay included a foursome that was racing together for the first time.

A 9:40.15 effort was produced by Kieran Taylor (2:57.32), Jalen Brown (46.04), Hunter Woodhall (1:50.61) and Cameron Griffith (4:06.18).

They finished behind Oregon’s record run as well as a 9:36.16 by Texas, while defeating Florida (9:44.97) and Stanford (9:47.05).

“I think we have a really good team,” said Bucknam. “It’s just going to take some time to develop. We still have potential to qualify in this event and be among the 12 teams who will race in national championships.

“That was Cameron’s first race on the anchor, it was Hunter’s first race at 800m really, and he’s only done that in practice and produced a 1:50, which was outstanding. Jalen gave us a great leg with a 46 flat and KT at the front did a good job running his first 1,200m.”

A crowd of 1,488 at the Randal Tyson Indoor Track Center was treated to a collegiate record as Oregon clocked 9:24.52 to break the previous mark of 9:25.97 set by Texas in this same venue in 2008.

“Hats off to Oregon, what a great run they had,” noted Bucknam. “To be out in front and to run that fast by yourselves shows not only a lot of talent, but a lot of guts. I’m glad they ran that well, since we wanted fast times. Unfortunately, it made everyone else look slow.”

Through the first day of the heptathlon, Markus Ballengee led an Arkansas foursome in the event scoring 3,022 points and is currently in ninth place among a field of 21.

The other three Razorbacks in the heptathlon included Daniel Spejcher (2,890), Etamar Bhastekar (2,825) and Tyler Brendel (2,715).

Arkansas alum Andrew Erwin cleared 18-1 (5.51) in an Olympic development pole vault.

Action in the Razorback Invitational continues on Saturday, starting at 10:40 a.m. with the continuation of the heptathlon.

Featured events in the 1-4 p.m. time frame will be shown on SEC Network+.

Information from Razorback Sports Communications is included in this story.

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Hogs Women's Track-Field

Razorbacks’ medley relay team posts second fastest time in school history

FAYETTEVILLE — A time of 10:57.08 placed Arkansas second in the women’s distance medley relay to highlight the first day of the Razorback Invitational in front of 1,488 in at the Randal Tyson Indoor Track Center.

The Razorback foursome of Carina Viljoen (3:22.85), Morgan Burks-Magee (51.90), Krissy Gear (2:05.68) and Katie Izzo (4:36.65) held the runner-up position throughout the race finishing behind Stanford’s 10:55.89. Behind Arkansas were Florida (11:04.00), Texas (11:04.31) and Oregon (11:15.82).

“It was special because we knew the race could set up to be a qualifier for nationals with the caliber of Stanford, Oregon, Texas and Florida,” said Arkansas women’s coach Lance Harter. “We led off with Carina to try to save her for tomorrow in the mile. She ran fantastic with a 3:22 split. Our quarter-miler had a huge breakthrough, Morgan Burks-Magee just did a great job of getting us close in an attack mode.

“Krissy Gear has so much fire, she’s not going to be denied and worked her way up to keep us close with Stanford. A 2:05 is a huge PR for her. Anchoring with Katie Izzo, she’s going to give you everything she’s got, and she was running against a pure 1,500m runner. A 4:36 split is her PR and Izzo is a warrior when a baton is in her hand, in fact she is a warrior any time she’s on the track.”

Bailee McCorkle produced a career best of 14-0 (4.27) as runner-up in the pole vault to a 14-4 (4.37) performance by Georgia’s Kayla Smith.

McCorkle moves to No. 10 performer on the Arkansas all-time indoor list.

In the pentathlon, G’Auna Edwards totaled a career best of 4,004 points to place fifth among a field of 18 entrants. She bettered her previous best score of 3,840 from 2018 as the hurdles and long jump provided the catalyst for the improved tally.

“It was good, but I feel I could have run a little harder in the hurdles,” said Edwards. “But it’s hard for me to run without the competition. So, I need to get that right. I could have gone further in the long jump on my second attempt, it’s just about execution.

“It’s a pretty positive score right now, it’s not the best I can do, but I need to get stronger in the 800m and put some points up there.”

Edwards established an early lead over the field with a quick clocking of 8.36 seconds in the 60m hurdles for 1,048 points.

A 5-7¾ (1.72) high jump earned 879 points, then she added 530 points from a 32-10 ¼ (10.01) in the shot put.

A leading long jump leap of 20-9 ¼ (6.33) picked up 953 points, moving Edwards into second place just 39 points behind Lauren Taubert of Kansas State (3,449).

Then Edwards finished her first multi as a Razorback with a 2:38.19 in the 800m to score 594 more points.

Taubert won the pentathlon with a collegiate leading 4,352 points over a 4,204 for Georgia’s Anna Hall and 4,142 by Oregon’s Mathilde Rey. Edwards currently ranks sixth in the nation this season.

Arkansas alum Sandi Morris cleared 15-5 ½ (4.71) to claim an Olympic development pole vault competition which included Megan Clark (14-3 ¼) and Daylis Caballero Vega (14-3 ¼).

Action in the Razorback Invitational continues on Saturday, starting at 11 a.m. with the 3,000 meters. Featured events in the 1-4 p.m. time frame will be shown on SEC Network+.

Information from Razorback Sports Communications is included in this story.

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Hogs Tennis

Oklahoma State drops Razorbacks in Friday evening dual match

STILLWATER, Okla. — Arkansas dropped a 6-1 decision to No. 16 Oklahoma State on Friday evening at the Greenwood Tennis Center.

Doubles

The doubles point went in favor of the Cowgirls as they posted wins on courts one and two.

Arkansas’ second court combo of Martina Zerulo and Jackie Carr fell to Bunyawi Thamchaiwat and Lenka Stara, 6-3.

On court three, Laura Rijkers and Thea Rice defeated Dariya Detkovskaya and Alana Wolfberg, 6-3, setting up a final bout on the first court.

The doubles point would not go easy as the No. 34th-ranked pair Lauren Alter and Tatum Rice fought back to make it 5-6.

Despite a strong comeback bid, the Razorback duo fell to No. 17 Lisa Rioux and Ayumi Miyamoto, 7-5.

Singles

The Razorbacks came out strong in singles but couldn’t close the sets as the Cowgirls posted opening-set victories in five of the six courts.

Kelly Keller was the only one to put the Razorbacks on the board with a 6-4, 5-7, 1-0 (10-7) victory in the No. 5 spot.

Courts four and one were the first to fall Friday evening as Wolfberg knocked off Alter, 6-2, 6-1. From the No.1 position, Zerulo suffered a setback as she was downed by No. 29 Thamchaiwat, 6-0, 6-1.

Carr was next to fall at the No. 3 position as No. 92 Miyamoto notched a 6-1, 6-3 victory. With just one more point needed for Oklahoma State to clinch it, No. 16 Rioux defeated Tatum Rice 6-0, 7-5.

Next time out

Arkansas will be back on the court facing Wichita State in the Sheldon Coleman Tennis Complex on Sunday at 11 a.m.

Singles competition
1. No. 29 Bunyawi Thamchaiwat (OSU) def. No. 122 Martina Zerulo (ARK) 6-0, 6-1
2. No. 16 Lisa Marie Rioux (OSU) def. Tatum Rice (ARK) 6-0, 7-5
3. No. 92 Ayumi Miyamoto (OSU) def. No. 109 Jackie Carr (ARK) 6-1, 6-3
4. Alana Wolfberg (OSU) def. Lauren Alter (ARK) 6-2, 6-1
5. Kelly Keller (ARK) def. Dariya Detkovskaya (OSU) 6-4, 5-7, 1-0 (10-7)
6. Lenka Stara (OSU) def. Laura Rijkers (ARK) 6-4, 6-4

Doubles competition
1. No. 17 Lisa Marie Rioux/Ayumi Miyamoto (OSU) def. No. 34 Lauren Alter/Tatum Rice (ARK) 7-5
2. Bunyawi Thamchaiwat/Lenka Stara (OSU) def. Martina Zerulo/Jackie Carr (ARK) 6-3
3. Laura Rijkers/Thea Rice (ARK) def. Dariya Detkovskaya/Alana Wolfberg (OSU) 6-3

Match Notes:
Arkansas Razorbacks 2-1
Oklahoma State 5-1; National ranking No. 16
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (4,1,3,2,6,5)

Information from Razorback Sports Communications is included in this story.

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Hogs Swimming-Diving

‘Tired’ Razorbacks drop dual meet to Kansas ahead of SEC

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Arkansas, admittedly tired after focusing on SEC meet, took a 178-118 loss to Kansas at the Robinson Natatorium Saturday morning.

Top Hogs

The team posted a total of 20 podium finishes, including five first-place finishes from swimmers Anna Hopkin, Peyton Palsha and the 400 free relay (3:26.85) foursome of Maddie London, Hopkin, Alyssa Lemon and Sarah Dalton Chambliss.

Hopkin had a fabulous day in the pool picking up three first-place finishes, a podium finish and an NCAA ‘B’ cut.

In the 50 free, the senior claimed first with an NCAA ‘B’ cut time of 22.76, outracing Kansas’ Autumn Looney by over two seconds. She then went on to win the 100 free, touching the wall at 49.77.

Palsha was the first Razorback to win an event, sweeping the 1,000 free (10:06.94). Lexi Ljunggren trailed right behind, finishing the event at 10:10.32.

Both distance swimmers later recorded first and second place in the 500 free, with Palsha getting a final time of 4:55.58 and Ljunggren finishing with a mark of 4:57.10.

Sophomore Vanessa Herrman had two podium finishes, taking second in the 100 breast (1:03.78) and third in the 200 IM (2:08.78). Molly Moore, Andrea Sansores, Kobie Melton and Emma Hultquist were the other Razorbacks to take podium finishes.

Estilla Mosena recorded a second-place finish in the 3- (273.68) and 1-meter (289.58). Freshman Josie Matalone combined for a score of 219.23 on the 1-meter and 253.28 on the 3-meter with both scores earning her a third-place finish.

 Quotables

“Our team is tired from focusing and working hard this week for the SEC Championships. Kansas swam faster and dived better than we did today. Our focus continues to be the SEC Championships, which are still more than two weeks away. We already have five swimmers that have already made NCAAs, so hard work and fatigue are all they need to be dealing with right now. I am proud of the team for staying positive and focused. The days for the Hogs to shine are coming, and I am excited and confident.”

— Arkansas coach Neil Harper

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Hogs Baseball

Noland on adapting to not playing football, getting more consistent velocity

Razorbacks pitcher Connor Noland talked Friday about missing the competitiveness of football, but focusing on baseball has allowed him to increase the velocity on his pitches.

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Hogs Baseball

Martin ‘excited’ for season to start, confident in Noland, Wicklander on mound

Arkansas shortstop Casey Martin talked Friday about being confident about starting pitchers Connor Noland and Patrick Wicklander and how he’s excited to get his third year rolling.

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Hogs Baseball

Moore on decision to leave high school early to play for Razorbacks

Arkansas infielder Robert Moore could be in the final semester of high school getting ready for graduation, but will be playing in Fayetteville and he talked about that decision Friday.

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Hogs Baseball

Kjerstad on getting ready to start third season with Razorbacks, this year’s team

Arkansas’ Heston Kjerstad has started in the outfield both of his first two seasons, but may see some time at first base and he said Friday he’s comfortable playing at either position.

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Bud Light Seltzer Morning Rush Podcast: Friday