EUGENE, Ore. — With her victory in the 800 meters at the NCAA track and field championships on Friday afternoon, LSU junior Natoya Goule added her name to the Lady Tigers’ storied history book.
Goule was already in the record books with a school-record time of 2 minutes, 00.76 seconds, which she set on April 20. She lowered it more Friday when she flirted with a sub two-minute time before winning with a 2:00.06 — the fourth-fastest 800 meters time in collegiate history.
In doing so, Goule added the title to the NCAA indoor crown she claimed in March and became the first person in school history to do the 800 double in the same year.
Going to the front early, Goule took control of the race and never looked back as she led all the way on her two trips around the Hayward Field oval. She has now broken the school record three times this spring.
LSU senior Kimberlyn Duncan won the 200 meters final Saturday, helping her tie the school record for career NCAA titles.
Duncan, the first person to win three straight NCAA titles at 200 meters indoors and outdoors, also had a win as the anchor of the 4x100-meter relay team in 2011. The seven titles tied the mark set by Muna Lee from 2001 to 2004.
The wins by Goule and Duncan were the 56th and 57th all-time for the Lady Tigers, counting the relays, since the first women’s NCAA championship in 1982.
LSU athletes have the most titles in the history of the meet, while UCLA is a distant second with 42. Texas and Nebraska have 39 and 22, respectively.
LSU has also won 14 team outdoor titles, 10 more than second-place Texas.
McKinley High School graduate Kamaria Brown ran the third leg on the Texas A&M 4x100 relay team that won the title in 42.88 seconds and finished the season unbeaten.
Brown later took second in the 200 with a wind-aided time of 22.21 behind Duncan’s 21.04 and anchored the 4x400 relay unit that finished second in 3:27.59 — bringing the Aggies from way back to second.
“It’s so amazing to run against Kim, because she is a great athlete,” Brown said. “I just thought about myself in that race. To come out here and run 22.21 against her, I’m very happy with my time. I’ve been trying for the longest to get under 22.5 — and I finally did.”
Southeastern Conference schools earned five of the eight berths in the 4x100-meter relay final run Saturday and then proved they belonged by taking the top five spots.
Florida clocked in at 38.53 seconds to edge Alabama at 38.54, while Auburn (38.69), LSU (38.78) and Arkansas (39.49) claimed the next three spots. The first non-SEC finisher was Iowa in sixth place with a 39.77.
After setting a collegiate record in the semifinals of the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 12.47 seconds Thursday, Clemson’s Brianna Rollins didn’t let the ink dry on the mark as won the title Saturday in 12.39 seconds.
Rollins’ time is the fourth-fastest in U.S. history and just six-hundredths of a second off Gail Devers’ record of 12.33 set in 2000.
The NCAA championships return to Eugene next year to complete the back end of a two-year deal that the University of Oregon bid on several years ago.
Next year’s dates are set for June 11-14.
The NCAA East preliminary rounds, which LSU and all Louisiana schools compete in, will be held May 29-31 in Jacksonville, Fla.
Saturday’s crowd was announced at 11,482, bringing the four-day total to 40,446 at the event.
Copyright © 2011, Capital City Press LLC • 7290 Bluebonnet Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70810 • All Rights Reserved