Men's track qualifies three for NCAA Championships

Badger men also send three athletes to Saturday finals before lightning forced delay at regional

Inclement weather pushed five events (three men's, two women's) from day one to day two of the NCAA Track and Field Mideast Regional Friday. But before the storm clouds rolled into Bloomington, Ind., the Badger men's team added three more athletes to its list of qualifiers for the June 8-11 NCAA Championships in Sacramento, Calif.

Sophomore Joe Thomas finished third in the shot put with a toss of 62 feet, three inches. Junior Brent Boettcher was fourth in the high jump after recording a personal best leap of 7-1. And Nathan Brown, who had already qualified for NCAAs in the decathlon, threw a personal best 210-2 in the javelin to place fifth.

UW already had five athletes awaiting NCAAs in the two events that are exempt from regional competition: the 10,000 meters (Simon Bairu, Tim Nelson and Antony Ford) and the decathlon (Brown and Ben Roland).

In addition, Badgers advanced to Saturday finals in three events Friday. Senior Josh Spiker won his heat in the 1,500 and was third in preliminary competition overall. Sophomore Demi Omole placed second in his heat and tied for second overall in the 100, running a 10.39. Omole also anchored the 400 relay, which also includes sophomore Brian Calhoun, senior Jvontai Hanserd and sophomore Dan Goesch. The quartet ran a season-best 39.95 and finished sixth in the preliminaries.

Paul Check (16th in 110 hurdles) and Ben Gregory (15th in 1,500) did not qualify for Saturday's finals.

On the women's side, sophomore Shuntia Lucas reached Saturday's finals in the 200 with a 23.64, her personal best and the fourth-fastest qualifying time. Lucas, though, was 16th in the preliminaries for the 100, coming up short of the finals.

Melissa Talbot, who will compete in the heptathlon at the NCAAs, did not qualify for Saturday's finals in either the 100 hurdles or the 400 hurdles.

Five of Friday's events were postponed: men's and women's long jump finals, men's and women's 5,000 finals and men's 200 preliminaries.


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