Illini Boast 18 Qualifiers for NCAA West Prelims
May 16, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The Illinois women's track and field team boasts 18 qualifiers in 13 events, including the 4x400m relay squads to the NCAA West Preliminary Round of Championship at the University of Texas in Austin from May 23-25, as announced by the NCAA and the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Thursday.
Each preliminary round site will host the top 48 declared athletes, or 24 relay teams, in each event, with the exception of the heptathlon. The preliminary round will serve as the first two rounds of competition for the NCAA Championships, narrowing the field in each event to 12 from each region.
The top 12 performers from each preliminary round site will then advance to compete at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships in Austin, Texas from June 5-8.
The Illini are ranked in the top-25 in nine different events, as the 4x400m relay squad of senior Marissa Golliday, freshman Morolake Akinosun, sophomore Ashley Spencer and sophomore Asia Thomas ranks the highest at No. 6 while Spencer (400m) and junior Samantha Murphy (800m) are also ranked No. 6 in their respective events. Morolake boasts the No. 7 time in the 100m and No. 13 in the 200m while junior Katie Porada is seeded No. 14 in the 1,500m. Junior Jesica Ejesieme ranks No. 12 in the 400m hurdles while Big Ten 10,000m point scorer Courtney Yaeger is listed at No. 17 in the event. Three-time defending Big Ten pole vault champion Stephanie Richartzcomes into the meet at No. 7 while two other vaulters will also compete next weekend. A full list of Illinois athletes heading to the NCAA Preliminary Round can be found below.
2013 NCAA West Preliminary Round of Championship - Illinois Qualifiers