Conway track and cross country standout Lauren Campbell signed with the University of Arkansas on Friday.
Conway girls track coach Greg Hughes said Lauren started well as a freshman.
“Her 800-meter time was 2:32, her 1600 was 5:38 and her 3200 was 12:25,” he said. “That’s where she started as a ninth-grader in 2014. At that time, she did finish as an all-conference runner and we finished as a group third in conference and seventh in state.”
Hughes said Campbell’s running contributed to team improvement.
“In 2015, we finished sixth in state, so we got better,” he said. “Her junior year, we won the conference and third in state. Each year, we have trended upward.
“She has improved in her times as well. She ran an 11:54 in the two-mile, a 2:27 in the 800 and a 5:18 in the 1600. There is a vast improvement every time she runs, which is a sign of her dedication of what she does and loves to do.”
Hughes said he is proud of the way she leads the younger members of the track team.
“Her dedication and leadership is big,” he said. “Of all her accomplishments we have talked about, she would be one of the first to say what we’ve done as a team, not I.”
He said Campbell is currently a three-time all-conference and one-time all-state member with her senior year honors to come.
Hughes said Campbell leaves Conway with a GPA over four and had a 32 on the ACT.
Lisa Worlow, cross country and assistant girls track coach said Campbell has impressed her since seventh grade.
“I think the thing that sticks with me is that she is harder on her self than I could ever be on her,” she said. “I come up to her and ask her how she feels because nothing I ever say to her is what she actually feels.”
Campbell thanked her coaches, teammates and friends, but was more complimentary of her family.
“They have bought all the ice for my ice baths,” she said. “They told me to shut up when I started crying after a bad race, which wasn’t actually a bad race. They have been through it all and my No. 1 support system. This should really be a celebration for them.”