Tigers Qualify 15 for NCAA Track Meet

Louisville, Ky.--Auburn increased its total of qualifiers for the NCAA Track and Field Championships to 15 on the second and final day of competition at the Mideast Regional on Saturday.

"We had a lot of ups and downs, but for the most part we got the majority of the people that we thought could qualify for the NCAA Championships into the meet," Auburn head coach Ralph Spry said.

"We had two big mishaps this weekend--the women's 4x100 relay and Marcus Rowland in the 100 meters--but overall I'm still pleased," Spry added. "Other than those two setbacks, we accomplished our mission. We'll have a lot of people at nationals, and if we perform well there both our men and women can finish in the Top 10."

Rowland, the top seed in the 100 meters, was disqualified for a false start on Saturday. On Friday, the women's 4x100 didn't qualify for the June 10-13 NCAA Championships in Fayetteville, Ark., after missing a handoff.

Rowland did qualify for the nationals with a time of 20.49 in the 200 meters, which was just .03 out of first place and the fifth fastest time in AU history.

"I decided to be mature about the situation," said Rowland. "I could have cried or thrown a fit, but instead I had to use that anger in the 200. Instead of getting mad about it I put it out of my head. I'm satisfied with my 200 meters, but I can go a lot faster."

Rowland also anchored the Auburn men's 4x100-meter relay team that qualified for the NCAA Championships for the first time since 2003, finishing third with a time of 39.51 seconds. Sophomores Stephen Fly and Michael DeHaven and senior Jerod Wims joined Rowland to finish just .01 seconds behind the Tigers' season-best time.

The top five finishers in individual events and the top three relays earn automatic spots at the NCAA Championships. Others who finish in the top 12 at the meet must wait until Tuesday to find out if they will earn an at-large spot in the field.

Auburn's men finished the meet in fourth place with 45 points while the women were fifth with 35.5 points.

In the women's 200 meters sophomore Cache Armbrister finished second with a season-best time of 23.22 to advance to the NCAA Championships in that event for the second year in a row. Freshman C.C. Williams missed by one spot, finishing sixth with a season-best time of 23.71 seconds.

Sophomore Joanna Atkins finished third in the 400 meters to secure her spot at the NCAA Championships. Atkins clocked a time of 52.71 seconds, improving slightly on her time from the prelims of 53.09. She finished fourth in the 400 at the NCAA Indoor Championships in March.

Williams, Armbrister and Atkins also combined with sophomore Latoya Parkinson to finish second in the women's 4x400-meter relay with a time of 3:31.79. Their time, which ranks fourth in school history, was better than any other time in the nation entering the meet, but came up just shy of LSU's winning time of 3:31.53.

Junior Felix Kiboiywo advanced to the NCAA Championships in the 1500 meters after finishing fourth in that event on Saturday with a time of 3:49.50. Kiboiywo was pinned against the rail for three laps, but on the final lap, dropped back to last place before moving to the outside and passing one runner after another, moving from 12th place all the way to fourth by the time he reached the finish line. It will be his second trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships, but first in the 1500 meters.

Junior Danielle Gilchrist qualified by placing fifth in the women's 400-meter hurdles. Gilchrist, an All-American in that event in 2008, clocked a time of 58.49 seconds, which was slightly off her SEC title-winning time of 57.83 set two weeks ago.

Senior Raevan Harris had to work overtime to earn her spot in the NCAA Championships field. Harris finished the competition in a four-way tie for third with a jump of 1.74 meters (5-8.5), meaning the four competitors had to have a jump-off to determine the final three automatic qualifying spots. The final spot came down to Harris and Indiana's Ashley Rhoades with Harris earning the spot by clearing four consecutive bars on her first try, including the final bar at 1.80 meters (5-10.75), to knock Rhoades out of the competition.

DeHaven finished sixth in the men's 200 meters with a time of 20.77 seconds, missing an automatic qualifying spot by one place. However, with a season-best mark of 20.64, which ranked tied for ninth nationally entering the weekend, he is expected to receive an at-large spot in the NCAA field.

DeHaven also led off the men's 4x400-meter relay team that missed an automatic qualifying spot by one place, finishing fourth with a time of 3:06.72. Wims, redshirt freshman Nick Green and Rowland combined to miss a season best by less than four tenths of a second.

Junior Shaquela Williams finished seventh in the women's 100 meters with a time of 11.59, missing out on a spot in the top five by just .03 seconds.

Sophomore Zach Clayton was also seventh in his event with a season-best mark of 57.43 meters (188-5) in the men's discus.

Also for Auburn junior Scott Novack was 12th in the men's 3000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:30.50, and sophomore Amber Riley placed 20th in the women's 3000-meter steeplechase in 11:05.67.

Auburn's Automatic NCAA Championships Qualifiers


Michael DeHaven (4x100-meter relay)

Ryan Fleck (High Jump)

Stephen Fly (4x100-meter relay)

Felix Kiboiywo (1500 meters)

Girma Meches (10,000 meters)

Marcus Rowland (200 meters, 4x100-meter relay)

Jean-Pierre Weerts (5,000 meters)

Eric Werskey (shot put)

Jerod Wims (4x100-meter relay)


Cache Armbrister (200 meters, 4x400-meter relay)

Joanna Atkins (400 meters, 4x400-meter relay)

Danielle Gilchrist (400-meter hurdles)

Raevan Harris (high jump)

Latoya Parkinson (4x400-meter relay)

CeCe Williams (4x400-meter relay)

Final Results

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