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Acker Wins Battle to Advance to Nationals
May 25, 2012

May 25, 2012

AUSTIN, Texas – The University of Oklahoma track and field teams added four individuals to the list of Sooners advancing to Des Moines for the national championship on Friday at the NCAA West Preliminary. In addition to the four new qualifiers, Brittany Borman advanced to the meet in the women’s discus after advancing in the women’s javelin on Thursday.

NCAA West Preliminary Results | Sooners Schedule

The performance of the day for the OU women came from senior Alex Acker who survived an eight-round jump off in 91-degree weather to advance to the semifinals of the women’s pole vault with an official mark of 13 feet, 4.25 inches. Acker joined Illinois’ Stephanie Richartz and Texas’ Natasha Masterson in a tie for the final spot but only one of the three could advance to the national meet.

After Masterson bowed out of the competition, Acker and Richartz continued jumping all the way to 14-0, which neither competitor cleared, before the bar was gradually reduced back down. On what proved to be the final attempt of the jump off, Acker cleared 13-6.25 and Richartz missed on her first attempt to send the Sooner senior to the national championship for the first time in her career.

Borman advanced in the women’s discus throw with the third-best mark at the preliminary. Borman’s mark of 181-6 came on her fourth attempt. Borman advanced to Des Moines in the women’s javelin on Thursday to earn her third straight trip to the national meet. She was the national runner-up in the discus in 2010.

Shakeeri Cole advanced to the NCAA Championship for the first time in her career. Cole ran a collegiate-best 2 minutes, 5.68 seconds, the second fastest time in Oklahoma program history, to finish 12th in the women’s 800-meter run. Cole was the final qualifier based on time as all three of those came out of her heat.

Eric Cray finished 10th in the men’s 400-meter hurdles to advance to the NCAA Championship. Cray ran 50.56 seconds to finish fourth in his heat. His time was the best among the non-automatic qualifiers in the event.

Jamel Wood advanced to the men’s 400-meter dash semifinals in Des Moines by finishing sixth in the first heat. Wood ran a collegiate-best 46.35 seconds to qualify in the final spot from the west. Like Cole’s 800 heat, all three qualifiers based on time came out of the first heat.

Tre Lathan kept the men’s streak of advancing to the quarterfinals intact. Lathan ran a wind-aided 13.59 seconds to win his heat of the 110-meter hurdles and post the fourth-best time overall. Lathan looks for a chance to advance to the NCAA Championship Saturday at 7:05 p.m. CT. Sherine Wells ran in the first round of the women’s 200-meter dash but did not advance to the quarterfinal.

Bailey Wagner (discus), Lauren Guerrieri (discus), Kristen Rice (high jump), Wayne Walls (triple jump) and Holden Mitchell (hammer throw) also competed but finished outside the top 16 places which advanced to the on-site quarterfinal. Evan Pierson ran just off his collegiate best in the men’s 100-meter dash quarterfinal but did not advance.

The Sooners close out action at the NCAA West Preliminary beginning with the men’s discus throw at 11 a.m. CT Saturday. The remainder of events OU is scheduled to compete in begin at 6 p.m. CT. A complete schedule and link to live results is available at SoonerSports.com.

NCAA West Preliminary – Day Two Results
Mike A. Myers Stadium – Austin, Texas – May 25, 2012
Men’s 100m Dash (quarterfinal): 26. Evan Pierson, 10.61; Women’s 200m Dash (first round): 30. Sherine Wells, 24.26; Men’s 400m Dash (quarterfinal): 12. Jamel Wood, 46.35 (Q); Women’s 800m Run (quarterfinal): 12. Shakeeri Cole, 2:05.68 (Q); Men’s 110H (first round): 4. Tre Lathan, 13.59w (q); Men’s 400m Hurdles (quarterfinal): 10. Eric Cray, 50.56 (Q); Women’s High Jump: T23. Kristen Rice, 5-7.25; Women’s Pole Vault: 12. Alex Acker, 13-4.25 (won jump off clearing 13-6.25); Men’s Triple Jump: 30. Wayne Walls, 49-2.50; Women’s Discus: 3. Brittany Borman, 181-6 (Q), 19. Bailey Wagner, 164-9, 30. Lauren Guerrieri, 159-9; Men’s Hammer Throw: 39. Holden Mitchell, 185-2; Q = qualified for NCAA Championship, q = qualified for event quarterfinal

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