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Nigeria’s Favour Ofili becomes 2nd African woman to run 21.96 seconds

Favour Ofili

LSU’s Favour Ofili made her first 200-meter race of the outdoor season one to remember Friday night at the Tom Jones Invitational in Gainesville, Florida.

Ofili, a sophomore, blasted out of the blocks and posted a time of 21.96 seconds to break the collegiate record and become just the second African woman to go under 22 seconds in the half-lap event.

In addition to breaking Dawn Sowell’s school record of 22.04 seconds that had stood since 1989, Ofili’s time went down as a world leader for 2022.

After having Ofili concentrate on running the open 100 and anchoring the Tigers’ 4×100-meter relay in the first month of the outdoor season, LSU coach Dennis Shaver turned the Port Harcourt, Nigeria, native loose Friday.

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Ofili’s time broke the Nigerian national record held by Blessing Okagbare, who clocked a 22.04 in 2018. It also erased the old collegiate mark of 20.02 set by Florida’s Kyra Jefferson at the 2017 NCAA championships.

The only African woman to run faster than Ofili is 2020 Olympic silver medalist Christine Mboma of Namibia, who has a personal-best time of 21.78.

Also, LSU’s men got a 2-3 finish from Garrett Hamilton and Cade Martin in the 3,000-meter steeplechase Friday night.

Hamilton was the first collegiate finisher when he posted a time of 9 minutes, 28.85 seconds, while Martin was right behind with a 9:32.41.

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