Falcons Qualify 13 to the NCAA Outdoor Championships
May 21, 2010
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - The Air Force track and field team qualified 13 athletes to compete in 16 events at the NCAA Outdoor Championships (West Preliminary), the NCAA selection committee announced this afternoon (May 21). Senior Sara Neubauer and sophomore Bryce Bergman paced the squad with multiple incursions into the opening round of competition for the national meet.
The 2010 national championship meet begins for the Falcons next week in Austin, Texas - a preliminary site featuring the top 48 declared athletes in each event from the western half of the country. The runners will compete in the national first round on Thursday (May 27), with hopes of advancing to the national quarterfinals on Friday or Saturday (May 28-29). The field event athletes will automatically begin at the national semifinal level, with competitions being held Thursday, Friday or Saturday.
Neubauer will participate in the shot put, discus throw and hammer throw, while Bergman will compete in the 110- and 400-meter hurdles. Neubauer enters the West Preliminary meet ranked fifth in the shot put, seventh in the discus throw and 14th in the hammer throw. Bergman is ranked 30th in the 400-meter hurdles and 45th in the 110-meter hurdles.
The Falcons qualified three javelin throwers, including senior Katie Weber (ranked 32nd), to the national meet. Sophomore Paige Blackburn (43rd) will also represent Air Force in the women's javelin, while junior Conner Van Fossen (20th) will compete in the men's event.
Air Force also qualified multiple members of the pole vault and 800-meter squads. Senior Nick Frawley enters the preliminary site ranked 13th in the men's pole vault, while sophomore Kimber Shealy is ranked 44th in the women's. At the 800-meter distance, senior Ally Romanko and junior Tyler Stanley are ranked 12th and 36th, respectively, in the men's and women's fields.
Sophomores Manuel Smith (400-meter dash, 45th), Alex Zubey (1500-meter run, 35th), James Walmsley (5000-meter run, 23rd) and Robert Drye (hammer throw, 41st) will also represent the Falcons in their respective events.
Senior Joel Nolan (pole vault) and junior Justin Tyner (steeplechase, 5000-meter run) also qualified to the national preliminary, but had to withdraw from competition. Nolan will be getting married on Saturday afternoon, while Tyner is nursing a stress fracture in his foot.
Action for the three-day West Preliminary of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships will be held at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the campus of the University of Texas. The East Preliminary for the national meet will run simultaneously in Greensboro, N.C. The top 12 athletes from each preliminary site will advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships, which will be held June 9-12 in Eugene, Ore.