DES MOINES, Iowa ? Seven MAC student-athletes place among the top 12 during Wednesday’s preliminary rounds at the NCAA Track and Field Championships to advance to the finals in hopes of placing among the top eight and earning All-American honors.
Stevi Large advanced to the Friday’s final in the women’s hammer by placing among the top 12 after the qualifying round Wednesday. The 2008 Mideast Region and Mid-American Conference champion in the event had a throw of 200-7 (61.15) to place 11th in the field of 29. The final of the women’s hammer will take place Friday (June 13) at 3:15 PM (CT) and today’s preliminary marks will not carry over to the final. After three more throws Friday, the field will be trimmed with the top nine getting an additional three throws to determine a champion and top eight for All-American honors. Last year in her first NCAA Outdoor Championship appearance, Large did not advance past the qualifying round, placing 14th with a throw of 188-3. This past indoor season, the junior earned her first All-American honor, placing fifth in the weight throw at the 2008 NCAA Indoor Championships.
Cadeau Kelley had a leap of 25-1.75 (7.66) to tie for 12th in the men’s long jump and advance to the final, set for Thursday at 7:30 pm (CT). Like the women’s hammer, the top 12 and all ties advance to the final and Thursday’s preliminary distances will not carry over to the final. Kelley entered the NCAA Championships with the nation’s third-best long jump in 2008 with an Akron-record 26-2.25. On Thursday, Kelley, the 2008 MAC long and triple jumps champion, used his third and final jump of the prelim to secure his berth to the final. The 2008 Great Lakes Region and MAC Male Outdoor Field Performer of the Year is making his first trip to the NCAA Outdoors and his second overall, placing 14th at the 2008 NCAA Indoor Championships.
Senior Shamel Smith qualified for the finals in the men's high jump Smith tied for 13th overall in the men's high jump with a height of 6'-10.75".
Kristina Bolterstein has qualified for the finals of the 2008 NCAA national high jump championship by clearing 5-9 ¾ in Wednesday's prelims. Bolterstein tied for the best mark with 15 fellow competitors and was one of just six jumpers to clear the top height in one attempt. The Miamian cleared 5-7 on her first attempt and missed once at 5-8 ½ before clearing it and moving on to 5-9 ¾.
Becky Horn, Jennifer Sabra and Danielle Brown all qualified in the initial preliminary rounds of their specific events at the NCAA Track and Field National Championships in Des Moines, Iowa on Wednesday afternoon. and will move onto the semifinals.
Brown, a Kalamazoo, Mich., native finished in second place in her heat of the 400-meter hurdles, guaranteeing her a spot in the semifinals. The top two finishers from each heat move on to the semifinals, and then the remaining six are taken from the lowest times. Brown's time of 58.45 seconds was 10th among the 16 semifinalists.
Right behind Brown was Sabra, a junior from Taylor, Mich. Sabra finished in third place in her heat, but her time of 58.19 was the top among non-automatic qualifiers and also a personal best. Two weeks ago at the NCAA Mideast Regional Championships Sabra set a new personal best of 58.20 seconds, but edged it today.
Horn automatically qualified for the 800-meter run semifinals by finishing in third place in her heat with a time of 2:06.80. Unlike the 400 hurdles, the 800-meter run takes the top three from each heat and then the next four best times. The Battle Creek, Mich., native finished with the 10th best time among automatic qualifiers.
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