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Gunnarsson Sets NCAA Lead In The Pole Vault

Gunnarsson Sets NCAA Lead In The Pole Vault

Baton Rouge, La. – Lisa Gunnarsson opened up her 2022 season at the Bayou Bengal on Friday with an NCAA leading clearance of 14’ 9.50” (4.51 meters) in the pole vault to highlight action for the Tigers at the Carl Maddox Fieldhouse.

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Gunnarsson, the reigning NCAA champion in the event, was perfect en route to victory with a total of four clearances. She opened at a height of 13’ 7.75” (4.15 meters), before progressing to bars of 14’ 1.75” (4.31 meters) and 14’ 5.50” (4.41 meters). Her final clearance of the day came at a height of 14’ 9.50” (4.51 meters) to takeover the NCAA lead in the event. She moved the bar to a height of 15’ 1.50” (4.61 meters) in what would have made her equal to the No. 5 performer in collegiate history, but she was unable to clear that height in three attempts.

Amber Hart notched a personal best in the women’s shot put with a toss of 51’ 6.25” (15.70 meters) to take the top collegiate spot in her event. Hart finished second overall behind professional Jessica Ramsey, who won with a mark of 18.30 meters.

All-American Sean Dixon-Bodie made his return to competition with a win in the triple jump with a mark of 52’ 4.75” (15.97 meters); that mark ranks No. 10 in the national rankings. Kyndal McKnight made it a Purple & Gold sweep in the triple jump as she won her second event title of the season with a mark of 41’ 4.25” (12.60 meters).

LSU had six other event winners on Friday at the Bayou Bengal. Jake Norris started the day off with a win in the weight throw as he won with a mark of 62’ 10” (19.15 meters). The Tigers swept titles in the mile run and triple jump, while also winning the women’s 800 meters.

Callie Hardy led a group of six women LSU milers who registered personal bests. Hardy won with a time of 5:01.29, and was followed by podium finishers Adele Broussard (5:07.17/PR) and Sophie Martin (5:07.44/PR). Carly Nicholson (5:13.19), Molly McHale (5:23.19), and Annie Fink (5:34.53) all notched personal bests as well. In the men’s mile, it was Garrett Hamilton who came away with a win in a time of 4:16.86, which was a near six second PR. Cade Martin (4:18.23) and Jack Wallace (4:20.39) rounded out the 1-2-3 finish for LSU in the event with career best times. Hardy also ran a personal best of in the 800 meters with a time of 2:19.47 to place second.

Three more distance runners picked up wins to highlight LSU’s nine event titles on the day. Alicia Stamey clocked a personal best of 2:15.41 to win the 800 meters, while both Gwyneth Hughes (10:40.72) and Evan Pardo (8:49.82) notched personal bests to win their first career collegiate races.

LSU had seven other podium finishes on the day as Apalos Edwards and Ji’eem Bullock finished in second and third in the long jump respectively with marks of 24’ 1.75” (7.36 meters) and 23’ 11.50” (7.30 meters). In the high jump, Morgan Smalls took second in the women’s event with a height of 5’ 6.50” (1.69 meters) and Ronnie Rounds III place third on the men’s side with a clearance of 6’ 7” (2.01 meters).

Thomas Daigle was the first LSU athlete in action on the track Friday and he ran his way to a second place finish in the 600 meter race with a personal best time of 1:22.17. In the men’s 800 meters, Adam Wise (1:56.88) and Jack Wallace (2:00.25) ran career best times on their way to second and third place finishes in the event.