Ackelia Smith Reigns Supreme with Record-Breaking Leap at Big 12 Conference
Ackelia Smith

EUGENE, Ore. — Ackelia Smith delivered a stunning performance on Thursday night to defend her long jump title at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Thursday (6 Jun).

Smith clinched her victory with a third attempt mark of 6.79m (22-3.50), making history as the first Longhorn woman in 18 years to secure back-to-back titles at the NCAA Outdoor meet. The last to achieve such a feat was Destinee Hooker, who won the high jump in 2006-07. ALSO READ, World Athletics Ultimate Championship Introduced with Record Prize Pot

Smith also became the first woman to win consecutive NCAA Outdoor long jump crowns since Elva Goulbourne of Auburn in 2002-03. Smith will compete in Saturday’s triple jump, where she aims to improve upon her runner-up finish from last season.

Meanwhile, Smith’s teammate, Leo Neugebauer also defended his 2023 outdoor title, becoming a two-time NCAA Champion. Neugebauer made history on both the world and collegiate stages by breaking his own collegiate record in the decathlon with a score of 8,961 points. This remarkable achievement places him among an elite group of only seven men in the world to surpass 8,900 points and is the sixth-best performance in world history.

Smith’s and Neugebauer’s accomplishments underscore their exceptional talent and dedication, continuing to raise the bar in collegiate athletics.

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