NEW YORK — Arkansas volunteer assistant coach Ryan Crouser opened his season with a shot put victory at the 113th Millrose Games on Saturday, producing a world-leading mark of 72-9¾ (22.19).
Joe Kovacs, the 2019 World champion, finished second with a toss of 70-0¼ (21.34) as Payton Otterdahl placed third with a 69-2¾ (21.10).
Featuring the shot put in the middle of the infield at the Armory Track and Field Center, Crouser and Kovacs each opened the competition with identical marks of 69-8¼ (21.24) to lead the field of six throwers.
Crouser, who set the Millrose Games meet record of 73-3¼ (22.33) last year, improved his mark in three consecutive rounds, from 70-10 (21.69) in round three to 71-2 (21.69) and then his winning effort in round five.
Kovacs bettered the 70-foot distance once, in the third stanza.
The 2016 Olympic champion, Crouser is in his first season as a volunteer assistant with the Razorbacks.
His Millrose meet record set in 2019 ranks fourth in the world all-time and third among Americans.
Information from Razorback Sports Communications is included in this story.