Razorback Invitational to feature top track and field teams

By: Bob Holt
Published: Friday, January 25, 2019
Arkansas' Lexi Jacobus competes in the pole vault invitational Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018, during the Tyson Invitational in the Randal Tyson Track Center in Fayetteville.
Photo by Andy Shupe
Arkansas' Lexi Jacobus competes in the pole vault invitational Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018, during the Tyson Invitational in the Randal Tyson Track Center in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE -- The University of Arkansas' No. 1-ranked women's track and field team and No. 12 men's team will get a taste of what they'll face later this indoor season at the SEC and NCAA championships when they host the Razorback Invitational today and Saturday at the Randal Tyson Center.

The women's field will include five teams ranked in the top 10, including No. 6 Florida, No. 8 Kentucky, No. 9 LSU and No. 10 Oregon.

RAZORBACK INVITATIONAL TRACK AND FIELD MEET

WHEN 11:25 a.m. to 7 p.m. today; 11:25 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Saturday.

WHERE Randal Tyson Center, Fayetteville

WHO Arkansas’ No. 1 women’s and No. 12 men’s teams will be joined in the field by Florida, LSU, Kentucky, Oregon, Mississippi State, Purdue, Kansas State, Oklahoma State and Iowa State.

TELEVISION-INTERNET The SEC Network will televise Saturday’s events from 1-4 p.m. Tonight’s events will be available for streaming on SEC Network-Plus.

"I think we're jumping right into the fire as far as the level of competition," Arkansas women's Coach Lance Harter said. "We're going to see the best teams in the United States head-to-head with very few exceptions. We're going to be tested to see if we can hold our own."

The men's field has four teams in top 20 with No. 2 Florida, No. 8 LSU and No. 17 Oregon joining Arkansas.

"Let's put the rust-buster term away," Razorbacks men's Coach Chris Bucknam of hosting the second meet of the season. "We're moving forward to try to have a really good meet this weekend and compete.

"We're so dialed into school records and NCAA performances and all that stuff. I would like to see that, but I want to see our kids compete.

"If you compete hard, the good performances will follow. I'm looking for our kids to be great competitors and find out where we're at."

The meet begins at 12:25 p.m. today with the men's heptathlon and women's pentathlon among several field events, including the women's pole vault Arkansas seniors Lexi Jacobus and Tori Hoggard. Running events today with be the distance medley relay at 6 p.m. and 200 meters and 6:25 p.m.

Saturday's main field and running events are from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. when that portion of the meet will be televised on the SEC Network.

"I think we have a lot of talent," Harter said. "We have a lot of experience returning.

"Any time you can bring back six seniors that have all been to the national championships and been All-Americans to lead the younger charges, it's exceptional. Hopefully, they will take care of their business and the young ones will follow."

The meet will be scored with team totals to provide some added competition.

"We're scoring the meet because we think it's important," Bucknam said. "That's what you're going to do at the SEC Championships.

"We won't have our lineup put together like we will at the SEC meet, but t I always have the philosophy that if you have a really good team, you should be able to move guys around and still score a lot of points. So it is a meaningful endeavor to score this meet and see how we match up with who won and who lost. I think that sometimes gets lost in track and field.

"You don't see a baseball game where they just [keep track of] the strikeouts and walks and stolen bases. There's an actual score. So I'm a believer in no matter what time of year, score a meet whenever you can and see where you stand."

Sports on 01/25/2019

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