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Track & Field: TCU crowns a winner at Big 12 Outdoor Championships

It was a fairly successful showing for TCU Track & Field last weekend at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships in Norman, Okla.

Garnering a few podium finishes, and even crowning a champion, the Frogs didn’t leave Sooner-country unhappy.

We’re here to recap the weekend, in full:

Friday, May 12:

On Friday, May 12, the first day of the Big 12 Outdoor Championships, Sydney Juszczyk made TCU history.

The No. 1 seed headed into the Big 12 Javelin Championship, Juszczyk advanced to the finals as leader with a throw of 49.66 meters. After that, she never gave up the lead, even improving her initial mark on her sixth and final throw, being crowned champion with an impressive mark of 50.40 meters.

Even more impressive — Juszczyk wouldn’t have needed that final throw to be crowned Women’s Big 12 Javelin Champion. Silver medalist, Oklahoma’s Pippi Lotta, finished with a throw of 48.66 meters, a full meter behind Juszczyk’s initial throw.

Now, after two years at TCU, Juszczyk has finished in the top three in both her Big 12 Outdoor Championships.

In the heptathlon, which includes events like the 100-meter hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200-meter dash, long jump, javelin, and the 800-meter run, TCU’s Jill Johnson and Elise Dobson both sat in the top 10 after Friday.

Johnson began her record-breaking weekend with a fifth-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles (14.20s), and took second in high jump, tying the outdoor school record, with a jump of 1.73 meters. Johnson also finished 11th in shot put with a throw of 10.36 meters, and sixth in the 200-meter dash (25.44s), to finish Friday in sixth place with 3,241 points.

Dobson, on the other hand, ran a strong 14.52s in the 100-meter hurdles to finish ninth, and placed eighth in high jump with a jump of 1.64 meters. Her performances in shot put and 200-meter dash is what kept Dobson in the top 10, though. Dobson finished eighth in shot put with a throw of 11.33 meters, and finished 14th in the 200-meter dash (26.53s).

After Friday, Dobson sat in 10th place with 3,057 points.

Lastly, in the women’s hammer throw championship, TCU’s Mathilda Bjorklund finished 10th with a throw of 56.05 meters.

In the women’s 10,000 meter, TCU’s Mariana Martinez finished 17th with a time of 37:55.12. In the men’s 10,000 meter, TCU’s Noah Winters clocked a 32:35.95 to place 14th.

Saturday, May 13:

Johnson continued Friday’s solid performance with a record-breaking finish on Saturday.

In only her first year competing in the heptathlon, Johnson finished with a score of 5,203, finishing sixth, breaking the TCU record. Though she finished Friday in sixth, and wasn’t able to advance her position on Saturday, Johnson scored personal bests in long jump with a jump of 5.61 meters, javelin with a throw of 30.55 meters, and the 800-meter dash with a time of 2:26.03.

Dobson finished ninth in the event with a personal-record of 5,037 points, earning her the third-best score in TCU history.

Saturday is full of preliminary running events, and the Frogs began with Gracie Morris in the 1500-meter dash, who finished second in her heat, running the third-fastest time overall at 4:17.64 and automatically advancing to the 1500-meter dash finals.

TCU’s Iyana Gray, running the 100-meter and 200-meter dash, advanced to both finals, running a 11.14 in the 100-meter finishing sixth, and running a 22.95 in the 200-meter finishing seventh.

In the 400-meter dash, TCU’s Simbarashe Maketa finished fifth with a personal-best 45.22s, advancing to the 400-meter finals, and so did Samarra Monrroy, who also finished with a personal record of 53.53s.

In the women’s 800-meter dash prelims, Jasmin Muhammad-Graham finished fifth overall and ran an outdoor personal-record of 2:07, advancing to Sunday’s final event.

Then, on the men’s ‘side of the track’, TCU’s Clinton Muunga finished second in the 100-meter dash with a personal record of 10.22s, automatically qualifying for the 100-meter dash finals.

On the field, and in the long jump final, TCU’s Emma Seetoo jumped a personal-best 6.18 meters, finishing sixth, earning her her first career Big 12 podium finish. In the women’s pole vault final, TCU’s Quinn Calhoun, in her first season as a Frog, placed sixth with a height of 3.90 meters.

Lastly, in the women’s shot put, TCU’s Samantha Callaway threw a personal-record of 14.54 meters, moving up to seventh all-time on TCU’s outdoor records list.

Sunday, May 14:

On Sunday, the final day of the Big 12 Outdoor Championships, 10 different Frogs earned podium finishes.

Morris, after finishing third in the prelims, earned the bronze medal, taking third in the 1500-meter dash with a time of 4:19.61.

Ethan Brown, Donnie James, David Seete, and Ryan Jordan also earned a bronze medal in the men’s 4x400-meter dash, running a season-best 3:03.92.

Three different Frogs earned spots on the podium in men’s triple jump, though none medaled, as Theophilus Mudzengerere finished fourth with a jump of 15.60 meters, Damilare Olukosi finished sixth with a jump of 15.15 meters, and Patrick Sylla rounded out the top eight with a finish of 15.01 meters.

Maketa, who ran a personal-best 45.22s in the 400-meter dash prelims, ran the exact same time in the finals, earning him a fourth-place finish. Though he didn’t medal, 45.22s is still an extremely impressive time; the Big 12 runs this event, as Maketa’s 45.22s is still the 13th-fastest time in Division I this season.

Gray, after making it to the women’s finals in both the 100-meter dash and the 200-meter dash, earned podium finishes and finished sixth in both with a time of 11.25s in the 100-meter, and 23.32 in the 200-meter.

Muhammad-Graham then placed sixth in the women’s 800-meter dash with a time of 2:07.31.

Both 4x100-meter dash teams finished fifth and earned podium finishes. The women’s team, compiled of Rachel Hall, Gray, Monrroy and Dreunna Washington, ran a season-best 44.57s, while the men’s team, compiled of Jais Smith, James, Maketa, and Muunga clocked their own season-best of 39.60s.

Finishing it up for the Frogs on the track, Monrroy took seventh in the women’s 400-meter dash with a time of 53.67s.

Then, on the field and in the men’s pole vault, Benjamin Kirbo scored an outdoor personal-best with a height of 5.01 meters, which is still good for 3rd in TCU history, and Callaway, in the women’s discus final, threw 50.27 meters, earning her eighth and her first career Big 12 podium finish.

One final thing to note after Sunday’s happenings: the women’s team finished with a total of 43 points, which was the second most points for the Frogs’ women at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships since joining the conference.

What’s Next?

TCU will compete at the NCAA West Regional from May 24-27 in Sacramento, California.