Women's Track & Field Wins First 4x800 Relay Since '85

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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Women's Track & Field Wins First 4x800 Relay Since '85

AUSTIN, Texas — The LSU women’s track and field team kicked off the 81st Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays on Thursday by running away with its first 4×800-meter relay title in 23 years with a winning time of 8 minutes, 45.04 seconds at Mike A. Myers Stadium.

The Lady Tigers were running third in the event when senior Lindsay Day passed the baton to freshman Brittany Hall on the second leg, but Hall ran a team best 2:09.08 split to give the quartet the lead for good at the second exchange.

Junior Kayann Thompson extended the lead with a 2:10.47 third leg, while sophomore LaTavia Thomas cruised to victory on the anchor to finish 30 meters ahead of her nearest competitor. The foursome from Baylor was more than five second back in second place with a time of 8:50.10.

The Lady Tigers won their first 4×800 title at the Texas Relays since 1985 and just their second in the meet’s storied history. Their 8:45.04 clocking ranks ninth on LSU’s all-time list in the event.

“It’s special any time you line up and win a relay title by that kind of a margin at an event like the Texas Relays because these races are so competitive,” said LSU head coach Dennis Shaver. “Lindsay put us in a good position on the first leg, and we really just took over the race after that. LaTavia got the stick with a pretty big lead and put it in cruise control through the finish.”

While the Lady Tigers won the women’s 4×800-meter relay title, the Tigers just missed making it a sweep as they finished runner-up to the Texas Longhorns with a time of 7:19.89.

The foursome of senior Michael Hendry, sophomore Jamaal James, senior Reuben Twijukye and senior Elkana Kosgei combined for the fourth-fastest time in the school history, finishing just two seconds behind the homestanding Longhorns who won this year’s title at 7:17.63.

Junior Rabun Fox was the Tigers’ top individual performer on the afternoon after recording his third straight personal best in the hammer throw to open the outdoor season. Fox finished fourth in the event with a seasonal best throw of 212 feet, 6 inches on his sixth and final attempt of the competition, improving upon his previous best of 210-11 set a week ago.

Sophomore Chris Bless also recorded a new personal record in the hammer throw with a mark of 183-9. Junior Patrick Lee enjoyed a seasonal best performance of his own Thursday by qualifying fifth for Saturday’s final in the 400 hurdles with a regional qualifying time of 51.87 seconds.

The action continues early Friday morning as the Tigers and Lady Tigers run in the preliminary round of the 4×100-meter relays beginning at 9:30 p.m. CDT. Junior Anna Lyons kicks things off in the field events as the women’s javelin competition is set to begin at 10 a.m. Live results from Friday’s festivities will be provided by www.texassports.com.