Arkansas State sends record 18 track & field athletes to NCAA West Prelims
A school-record 18 student athletes will represent the Arkansas State track and field teams at the NCAA West Region Prelims, held May 26-29 at E.B. Cushing Stadium in College Station, Texas.
The 18 athletes comprise entries in 17 events at the four-day event. This is the sixth-straight season that the Red Wolves will have entrants in 14 or more events and exceeds the previous A-State record of 16 set in 2019. The 2020 outdoor season was not contested due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Athletes who rank among the top 48 in their respective events earn bids into the NCAA West Preliminary Round, with others added due to scratches among the initial top 48. The top 12 individuals in each event at both the East and West prelims advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships, held June 9-12 in Eugene, Oregon.
Jermie Walker notched a personal-best performance at the Sun Belt Outdoor Championships and is set to compete in the 200m. Ke’Von Holder ran 13.90 at the conference championships, moving him to 30th in the west, while Daidren Davis owns a qualifying mark of 51.90 to make the field in the 400m hurdles. Freshman Rainee Bowers is set to continue her outstanding rookie outdoor season, competing in the 100m hurdles with her qualifying mark of 13.55.
Sun Belt champion Bennett Pascoe owns the eighth-best qualifying mark in the 3000m steeplechase, running a school-record 8:38.12 at the John McDonnell Invitational on April 23. Pauline Meyer qualified for the women’s steeplechase with her school record mark of 10:25.49.
Frank Massey’s Sun Belt-best mark of 2.17m (7-1.5) in the high jump is 14th in the region, while Allie Hensley will compete in the women’s high jump after qualifying with a height of 1.77m (5-9.75).
A pair of A-State pole vaulters will make the trip to College Station, as Sun Belt champion Lauren Beauchamp (4.08m | 13-4.5) and rookie Bradley Jelmert (5.25m) earned qualifying marks. Beauchamp’s entry marks the first A-State pole vaulter in the prelims since Stephanie Foreman in 2013.
Carter Shell enters as the No. 6 seed in the long jump with a leap of 7.96m (26-1.5). The Orlando native is looking to make his second trip to the national meet after securing All-American honors in 2019. Courtney Thomas will join him in the field after getting into the meet via scratches. In the women’s triple jump, Imani Udoumana is set to compete with her seed mark of 12.86m (42-2.25).
Evangelynn Harris will compete in two events, qualifying in both the shot put and discus after podium finishes at the conference meet. She took gold in the shot put with a throw of 15.92m (52-2.75) before taking silver in the discus with a toss of 51.10m (167-8.0).
The Red Wolves are sending two more discus throwers to Texas as well, as two-time Sun Belt champion Babette Vandeput ranks 30th in the west on the women’s side. Eron Carter is 44th with his throw of 54.65m (179-3.0) that garnered silver at the conference meet.
Freshman Aimar Palma Simo is making his NCAA Prelims debut in the hammer throw, currently with a top-20 mark of 65.55m (215-1.0), which is 17th in the region. Grace Flowers will compete in the women’s hammer throw with her qualifying mark of 58.99m (193-6.0).
The men will compete Wednesday and Friday in College Station, while the women will compete Thursday and Saturday. A full schedule of events can be found here.
For the latest on the A-State track and field program, follow @AStateTrack on Twitter and @Arkansas_State_Track on Instagram, while also liking the team’s Facebook page at Facebook.com/AStateTrackAndField.
2021 NCAA WEST REGIONAL QUALIFIERS
Jermie Walker – 200m
Ke’Von Holder – 110m hurdles
Daidren Davis – 400m hurdles
Bennett Pascoe – 3000m steeplechase
Frank Massey – High jump
Bradley Jelmert – Pole vault
Carter Shell – Long jump
Courtney Thomas – Long jump
Eron Carter – Discus
Aimar Palma Simo – Hammer
Rainee Bowers – 100m hurdles
Pauline Meyer – 3000m steeplechase
Allie Hensley – High jump
Lauren Beauchamp – Pole vault
Imani Udoumana – Triple Jump
Evangelynn Harris – Shot put, Discus
Babette Vandeput – Discus
Grace Flowers – Hammer
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