May 26, 2011
Eugene, Ore. - The NCAA West Preliminary Rounds got underway on Thursday night with Stanford coming through with some outstanding results. The Cardinal excelled in the 10,000 meters, while also looking good in several other results.
The athletes in the 10,000 and the field events qualified through to the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Des Moines, Iowa in two weeks, while the rest of the track events still will have another round in Eugene later this weekend.
Stanford was particularly strong in the men's 10,000 meters, finishing with four of the first five athletes. Elliott Heath took the meet title, but will be joined by teammates Chris Derrick, Jake Riley and Miles Unterreiner at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Heath won in 29:11.44, while the other Stanford trio finished 3-4-5, just seconds off the pace. The result will give Stanford four of the 24 runners at the NCAA finals in the event.
Also doing well on the track were Amaechi Morton and Spencer Chase who advanced through the first round of their events. Morton won his heat in the 400-meter hurdles, clocking a time 50.42, which was No. 1 overall on the day. Chase ran a time of 47.14 in the 400 meters to also advance.
On the women's side, Stanford did not have the depth in the 10,000 meters, but Pac-10 Champion Stephanie Marcy easily advanced to the NCAA finals, running a time of 33:31.95.
Other Stanford women that punched their tickets to Des Moines were in the field where Eda Karesin advanced in the javelin and Brittni Dixon-Smith will be moving on in the long jump. Karesin advanced after tossing 163-6 to place sixth. Karesin had her best toss on her first throw of the competition and will advance to her first NCAA Outdoor Championships. Dixon-smith also had the sixth-best mark with a leap of 20-6 ¼.
In addition to the final round qualifiers, the Stanford women had several athletes advance to the quarterfinals that will be run later this weekend.
In the middle distances, Joy O'Hare advanced after running 2:07.15 in the 800 meters and placing second in her heat. In addition, Madeline Duhon squeezed through in the 1,500 meters after running a time of 4:23.48.
In the hurdles, Kori Carter won her heat of the 400-meter hurdles to qualify to the quarterfinals. She ran a time of 58.39, the sixth-fastest time of the day. Also advancing was Katie Nelms, who was 19th overall with a time of 59.80. Nelms was third in her heat.
The NCAA Preliminary Rounds will continue on Friday with more action from Hayward Field in Eugene.