Boit Concludes Career With 2nd-Place Finish

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Josphat Boit gave it a championship effort.Unbeaten since the start of the outdoor season, his attempt for the rare 5,000/10,000-meter double fell short Friday at the 2006 NCAA Outdoor Championships in the Alex G. Spanos Sports Complex.

He was up against fresher legs -- as the only athlete to attempt the double -- and against an unbeatable last 800 meters by Wisconsin's Chris Solinsky

He walked away from his collegiate career Friday night with two individual championships, a 5,000 indoor title and the 10,000 medal he won Thursday. Boit is now a seven-time All-American and a seven-time SEC champion, accolades which places him as one of great Razorback runners.

And he did it in only two years at Arkansas after transferring from Cowley Community College, by way of Eldoret, Kenya.

"That was one heck of a double for J.B, to do it in three days in a row," said Arkansas coach John McDonnell. "That was a great way to finish his career."

The pace of the 5,000 wasn't to his liking, a slow opening 1,000 meters before a series of speed-ups and slow-downs, which took its toll on Boit's already fatigued body.

"I thought if the race would have been a little faster, it could be better," Boit said. "But in another way, it provided me something -- that extra kick. I gave it all I had. (Solinsky) was strong and he had a good day."

But when Solinsky took a final charge with just over 800 meters to go, Boit and rivals Richard Kiplagat of Iona and Obed Mutanya of Arizona separated from the remainder of the pack.

With 200 meters left, Solinsky was long gone, poised to capture his second national title, and Kiplagat had pulled ahead of Boit.

But down the stretch, Boit found something left in his worn legs, finishing off the final 100 meters of a long three days, which consisted of over 12.4 miles of intense competition at a high level, to edge Kiplagat for second by three hundreths-of-a-second.

"I died the last 300 and then I recovered down the straightway," Boit said. "I saw Kiplagat tightening up and I said, 'I'm going to get him.'"

Solinsky won with a time of 14:11.71, while Boit crossed the line in 14:13.81.

Arkansas' Seth Summerside came in last in 14:35.28.

After 10 scored events, Arkansas sits in fifth place with 22 points behind the current leader Arizona (28) heading into the final day of competition.

Tennessee is second with 26 and Wisconsin sits in third with 24.

Team championship contenders LSU and Florida State will field talented sprinters in today's races, which will be televised on CBS beginning at 2:30.

LSU is currently in 13th place with 10 points and Florida State is 20th with seven points.

On the women's side, favored Texas is tied with Nebraska with 26 points.

Arkansas saw its slim chance of an upset victory at these championships become even more slim as triple jumper Nkosinza Balumbu pulled out of the qualifying round of the event.

Balumbu, who hails from Union City, Calif., injured his right hamstring taking an extra jump at the Mideast Regional two weeks ago in Knoxville, Tenn.

He jumped 47 feet, 5 3/4 inches on his second attempt after fouling on his first jump, where he was grimacing in slight pain down the runway.

"Coach (Dick Booth) walked down to me and just told me, 'You probably need about another four-foot increase to probably even get to the finals.' And he said, 'I don't know if it's worth it or anything like that to increase four feet.' Maybe if it was a foot or two and I had jumped 50 feet, it would have been worth it, but probably not at 47."

But Arkansas is not finished scoring points in an attempt to finish in the top four.

Adam Perkins will look to continue his improved performances off his injury earlier this spring to his Achilles tendon. He coasted to a seasonal-best 3:41.55 on Thursday.

Then, in the men's javelin, senior Eric Brown, the nation's leading thrower entering the meet, will look to win the first javelin title for a Razorback.

Brown struggled in the qualifying round, placing 10th out of 12 qualifiers.

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