Lobos Qualify 17 Athletes and 21 Entries for NCAA Prelims
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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— The University of New Mexico track and field team has qualified 17 student-athletes in 10 events with 21 entries total for the NCAA West Preliminaries as released by the NCAA on Thursday.
The preliminary round is set to be held May 23-25 in Sacramento, Calif., and includes the top 48 declared entries per event. Qualification to the preliminary championships competition is based on the descending-order list for the season, segregated by east and west sites with the top 48 declared student-athletes in each event at each of the preliminary sites.
Of the qualifiers, the Lobos will be represented by 10 men and seven women, with the 10 male entries and 11 female entries. Five qualified in a field event and 12 in a track event. There are four Lobos who have qualified in multiple events.
As a team, UNM has seven runners that have the top-three times in their event, all coming from the fifth-ranked women’s team, including two top times by sophomore Weini Kelati.
UNM will have an event-high five entries in the women’s 5000-meters to highlight the three-day meet, with Lobos holding the top-three times in the event. Kelati holds the top time of the 48 West entries with her 15:23.46, followed by Adva Cohen’s time of 15:31.01 and Ednah Kurgat’s time of 15:32.70. All three have qualified in multiple events. Emily Martin qualified with her time of 15:59.80 as did Charlotte Prouse with her time of 16:16.42.
Kelati and Kurgat also qualified in the 10,000-meter with Kelati holding the top time in the event after Boise State’s Allie Ostrander scratched. Kelati holds over a five second edge in time this season with her 32:09.10 time that she ran at the Mountain West Outdoor Championships with Kurgat second in the preliminary entries at 32:14.27.
Similarly, Cohen and Prouse enter the preliminary round holding two of the top three times in the steeplechase with Cohen second at 9:45.71 and Prouse third in 9:47.43. Alexandra Harris holds a time of 10:22.58 to earn her qualification in the event.
The singular field event entry on the women’s side is Cathilee Mullings in the triple jump with a mark of 41-1.5 (12.53m).
UNM will have three events with multiple entries on the men’s side, with led by three entries in the 1500-meter. Michael Wilson holds the top UNM time of 4:43.96, with Iolo Hughes (3:45.92) and Ian Crowe-Wright (3:47.38) each qualifying in the event with their respective times.
Kristian Hansen (1:48.45) and Max Wharton (1:48.61) give the Lobos two entries in the 800-meter and UNM has multiple entries in the long jump with Ryan Chase (24-10.5, 7.58m) and Tanner Battikha (24-9.75, 7.56m).
Jonny Glen’s time of 8:57.60 made the cut in the steeplechase and Aidan Quinn and Beau Clafton each made the triple jump and javelin prelims, respectively with marks of 49-8.5 (15.15m) and 203-5 (62.00m), respectively.
It is the second straight year that UNM qualified 17 athletes to the preliminary round, with seven Lobos making a repeat appearance in the West prelims. Kurgat, Kelati, Prouse, Crowe-Wright, Wilson, Hansen, Glen and Battikha all qualified with Crowe-Wright, Prouse, Kurgat and Kelati qualifying for nationals.
The 17 total qualifiers also continues a trend of large groups advancing to the preliminary competition. Since the NCAA reconfigured its preliminary rounds into two regions in 2010, New Mexico has qualified at least 10 athletes every season.
The three-day preliminary round starts Thursday, May 23 and runs through Saturday, May 25. Information regarding the outdoor preliminaries and the championship can be found HERE and will continue to be updated leading up to the start of the preliminaries.