NCAA Women’s 4×4 — Steiner Busts It Open

Alexis Holmes couldn’t be caught after Abby Steiner’s record 48.92 third-leg carry. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

AFTER TEXAS A&M set a new CR of 3:22.34 at last year’s meet one might have reasonably expected that standard to remain for a while. Not so. Texas came within a narrow 0.6 of it in March, and at the SEC in May two schools — Kentucky at 3:21.93 and the Aggies at 3:22.01 — ran faster and a third (Arkansas 3:22.55) was very close. The likelihood of a terrific final was obvious.

The third semi matched A&M and Kentucky, and they finished in that order, 3:25.63–3:25.67. Charokee Young ran harder than necessary (50.20) for the win, while Kentucky wisely rested Abby Steiner, who had already produced two PRs earlier in the evening. Alabama (3:31.29) became the meet’s fastest non-qualifier ever.

The last event of the meet benefited from a brief respite from the day’s rain. With the team title already decided in its favor, Florida found no need to race for the win.

Opening Leg
Stephanie Davis of South Carolina moved fastest over the first 200, with Kentucky, A&M and Arkansas closest. Davis handed off first after an impressive 50.8, followed by Kentucky (Karimah Davis 51.5), Texas and Florida.

Second Leg
Texas’s Rhasidat Adeleke went out fast, and at the break was perhaps 5m behind Carolina’s Makenzie Dunmore and Kentucky’s Dajour Miles. Dunmore ran a fine 50.3, but Adeleke’s better 49.5 nearly caught her at the exchange. Arkansas was now about 11m back after a 50.3 leg from Rosey Effiong, with Miles and A&M’s Jaevin Reed another several meters in arrears.

Third Leg
Steiner followed her 21.80 CR with another of the meet’s most memorable performances. Starting with least a 25-meter deficit, she methodically closed the huge gap until the final curve, where she shifted gears. With 100m remaining, she flew past everyone and into the lead.

Holding her form to the handoff, her 48.92 — the second-fastest split in meet history — gave Kentucky a 5m advantage over Texas, which had gotten a 51.96 carry from 100 winner Julien Alfred.

Anchor Leg
The Wildcats’ Alexis Holmes was never seriously threatened, and her 50.21 finished a victorious 3:22.55, equal fourth-best collegiate time ever.

Arkansas’s Britton Wilson moved up to 2nd with 280m remaining, but her 49.55 — the meet’s No. 4 split ever — was not enough to hold off a surge by the Longhorns’ Williams (50.12) in the final meters. Charokee Young’s 50.07 secured fourth for A&M.

“These are moments that I’m gonna hold on to forever,” said Steiner, the only athlete in the meet, female or male, to place in 4 events. Asked about her 400 potential, she said, “I would love to try an open 400. The last time I ran 400 was my freshman year of high school, so I think my PR is currently 57.2.”


WOMEN’S 4×4 RESULTS

FINAL (June 11)

1. Kentucky 3:22.55 (=4 C; 2 NCAA; #2 NCAA school)

(Karimah Davis 51.5, Dajour Miles 51.9, Abby Steiner 48.92 [#2 NCAA split ever], Alexis Holmes 50.21);

2. Texas 3:23.35 (=9 C; =4 NCAA; =#5 NCAA school)

(Kennedy Simon 51.8, Rhasidat Adeleke’ 49.5 [=#5 NCAA split ever], Julien Alfred’ 51.96, Stacey Ann Williams’ 50.12);

3. Arkansas 3:23.69 (6 NCAA; #6 NCAA school)

(Morgan Burks-Magee 52.4, Rosey Effiong 50.3, Jada Baylark 51.44, Britton Wilson 49.55 [#5 NCAA split ever]);

4. Texas A&M 3:24.55 (10 NCAA)

(Tierra Robinson-Jones 52.3, Jaevin Reed 51.2, Laila Martin 51.03, Charokee Young’ 50.07);

5. South Carolina 3:25.78 (#9 NCAA school)

(Stephanie Davis 50.8, Makenzie Dunmore 50.3, Angel Frank 52.51, Jahnile Registre 52.23);

6. Howard 3:28.39

(Ozioma Scott 53.5, Jessica Wright 52.0, Ameenah Saalih 52.40, Jessika Gbai’ 50.51);

7. UCLA 3:28.71

(Catherine Leger’ 53.0, Shae Anderson 50.9, Makenzy Pierre-Webster 52.21, Kate Jendrezak 52.58);

8. Baylor 3:28.89

(Mariah Ayers 52.7, Kavia Francis’ 51.4, Gontse Morake’ 53.02, Imaobong Nse Uko’ 51.75);

9. Florida 3:31.16

(Taylor Manson 52.2, Doneisha Anderson’ 53.9, Caitlan Tate 52.55, Talitha Diggs 52.52).

(best-ever mark-for-NCAA-place: =2, 3–5)

SEMIS (June 09)

I–1. Arkansas 3:27.52 (Baylark 52.74, Wilson 50.77); 2. South Carolina 3:31.80 (Frank 53.38, Registre 53.38); 3. Ohio State 3:33.40 (Murphy 52.94, Robinson 53.35); 4. USC 3:35.52 (Jones 54.10, Okonkwo 54.73); 5. Duke 3:36.40 (Hoffman 53.71, McGinnis 54.48); 6. Minnesota 3:37.53 (Larson 55.24, Schaafe 55.58); 7. Colorado 3:40.44 (Jenkins 55.46, Glynn 54.43); 8. Tennessee 3:41.31 (Robinson-Hubbard 54.36, O’Neil 56.73).

II–1. Texas 3:27.88 (Alfred’ 52.80, Williams’ 50.71); 2. Florida 3:28.40 (Anderson’ 53.10, Diggs 50.57); 3. UCLA 3:29.17 (Pierre-Webster’ 52.97, Jendrezak 52.06); 4. Alabama 3:31.29 (fastest non-Q ever) (Brown 52.68, Ballard 52.51); 5. Clemson 3:35.09 (Clark 53.81, Williams 53.32); 6. Purdue 3:36.18 (Kouyeth 53.74, Williams 54.63); 7. Texas Tech 3:36.62 (Omovoh’ 53.49, Dubarry-Gay’ 52.23); 8. Kansas State 3:37.70 (Wray’ 53.91, Ferguson 54.85).

III–1. Texas A&M 3:25.63 (Robinson-Jones, Reed, Martin 51.74, Young’ 50.20); 2. Kentucky 3:25.67 (Moss’ 51.96, Holmes 50.22); 3. Baylor 3:29.03 (Morake’ 52.20, Nse Uko’ 52.91); 4. Howard 3:30.60 (Saalih 52.86, Gbai 52.29); 5. LSU 3:32.13 (Rose 53.48, White’ 53.79); 6. San Diego State 3:34.79 (Dyer 53.93, Roberson 52.25); 7. Kansas 3:34.96 (Wright’ 55.05, Finley 51.58); 8. Vanderbilt 3:36.62 (Bishop 56.05, Brown 53.98).


4×4 Times & Places At Handoffs

Leg 1: 1. South Carolina 50.8; 2. Kentucky 51.5; 3. Texas 51.8; 4. Florida 52.2; 5. Texas A&M 52.3; 6. Arkansas 52.4; 7. Baylor 52.7; 8. UCLA 53.0; 9. Howard 53.5

Leg 2: 1. South Carolina 1:41.04; 2. Texas 1:41.27; 3. Arkansas 1:42.70; 4. Kentucky 1:43.42; 5. Texas A&M 1:43.45; 6. UCLA 1:43.92; 7. Baylor 1:44.12; 8. Howard 1:45.48; 9. Florida 1:46.09

Leg 3: 1. Kentucky 2:32.34; 2. Texas 2:33.23; 3. South Carolina 2:33.55; 4. Arkansas 2:34.14; 5. Texas A&M 2:34.48; 6. UCLA 2:36.16; 7. Howard 2:37.88; 8. Baylor 2:37.14; 9. Florida 2:38.64

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