Through the first two days of competition at the NCAA West Track and Field Championships, the Bearkats have already earned three spot in Eugene Oregon for the Finals with a few mor opportunities on Saturday.
On the opening day of the event on Thursday, the Bearkats punched a pair of tickets to the NCAA Track and Field finals in Eugene Oregon, with freshman Clayton Fritsch advancing in the pole vault and Josh Hernandez in the hammer throw. Friday, one more Bearkat advanced with Chris Jefferson moving on in the 100-meter dash.
Hernandez got the day started for the Bearkats, earning his second trip to Eugene with a throw of 210-feet, 8 inches. The sophomore finished ninth overall with the top 12 athletes advancing to the finals in Oregon. Hernandez earned his spot on his second throw, improving by nearly three feet from his first attempt.
Fritsch, a freshman competing at his first NCAA event, took fourth in the pole vault with a leap of 17-2 ¾. The height he cleared was actually tied for first, but he placed fourth based on misses at lower heights.
Jefferson, competing in two individual events at the NCAA First Round, started out his competition on Thursday, winning his heat and taking sixth overall in the 100 with a time of 10.20 seconds to advance him to Friday’s quarterfinal. On Friday Jefferson took second in his heat with a time of 10.39 to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Finals.
Jefferson also advanced to the quarterfinals in the 200 on Friday with a run of 20.97 and will have a chance on Saturday to advance to Eugene in his second event.
In other action on Friday for the Bearkats, Fabian McCall took fourth in his heat in the 110-meter hurdles, missing out on advancing by .05 seconds. Selena Wright with fifth in her heat of the 11-hurdles, missing out on advancing to quarterfinals by .01 seconds.
In the 200 meter dash, Kenaysia Dixon finished seventh in her heat and was 38th overall in the first round with a time of 24.24. In the discus, Tasha Crosse was 39th with a throw of 155-7. In the pole vault, Margarete Lasalle missed on all three of her attempts at 12-4 ¾.
On Thursday, Tristyn Allen just missed out on advancing to Eugene in the long jump with a leap of 19-feet-6. Her jump was 2 inches short of the mark need to advance. Eric Pouncy was 38th in the 400, with a time of 47.93. On the women’s side in the 400, Kodii Church was 46th with a time of 56.92. Camry Grigsby finished 42nd in the 800 with a time of 2:12.43.
In the high jump, Makenzie Smajstrla missed on all three attempts on her opening height of 5-foot-5. Kristine Hanks was 33rd in the shot put with a toss of 49-1 ¾. In the long jump, Zachary Johnson was 19th while Tyler Adams finished 47th. In the pole vault on the men’s side, Ashton Summers was 24th while Garrett Larson finished 30th.