Riley Advances to 110m Hurdles Final at NCAAs
June 7, 2012
DES MOINES, Iowa - Senior Andrew Riley continued his quest for his second NCAA title in the 110m hurdles on Thursday at Drake Stadium and earned a spot in the finals on Saturday. The Kingston, Jamaica, native hurdled to the second-fastest time of his career with a mark of 13.30, which was the No. 2 qualifying time overall.
As a team, the Orange and Blue advanced three of their five entries at the NCAA Championships to event finals as Riley (100m) will compete on Friday and again the follow day in the 110m hurdles and as part of the 4x100m relay on Saturday.
"Andrew looked good," head coach Mike Turk said. "He ran relaxed and kept his focus. He was in control of the race from the start. Its a great field and it will be a hot final on Saturday."
Riley, who entered the meet with the top qualifying time, ran out of lane four and won the third and final heat in the event. He jumped out of the blocks and was among the leaders until the final few hurdles where he edged defending NCAA champion Barrett Nugent (LSU) with a time of 13.30. Riley holds the second-quickest qualifying time, only behind Texas A&M's Wayne Davis II who timed a 13.26.
Running out of lane one, Stanley Azie ended his season in the 200m by placing seventh in his semifinal heat with a time of 21.00. The senior finished 21st overall and is still slated to anchor the 4x100m relay during the final on Saturday.
Kyle Engnell's season came to a close as he timed a 9:17.73 in the 3,000m steeplechase. The senior's time placed him 12th in his heat and 24th overall.
"Kyle (Engnell) can be proud that he advanced to this meet," Turk said. "He had a good year and has been a great contributor in his career."
The Orange and Blue will return to Drake Stadium on Friday night as Andrew Riley will look to become Illinois' first 100m national champion since 1954. The 100m dash is scheduled to begin at 5:55 p.m. Full results and a recap can be found on fightingillini.com, and live updates will be made at twitter.com/IlliniTrackXC.
Illinois Thursday Results at NCAA Championships
110m Hurdles (Semifinal)
3,000m Steeplechase (Semifinal)