COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State track and field team earned six entries to the NCAA outdoor championships Saturday evening on the final day of the 2016 NCAA East Preliminary Round in Jacksonville, Fla. After three days of high-level competition at Hodges Stadium, a total of nine individual Buckeyes and two relay teams secured trips to the national championships next month in Eugene, Ore.
Ohio State got off to a fast start in the field, with qualifiers in both the men’s and women’s shot put. Senior Alyssa Gary, ranked 74th in the NCAA entering the competition, used a massive personal-best throw of 16.30 meters (53-5.75) to finish eighth overall and secure her first trip to the NCAA championships, while redshirt senior J.C. Murasky finished fifth overall with a mark of 19.14 meters (62-9.50). Gary moved to No. 2 in the OSU outdoor record book with her PR throw.
Sophomore Chantel Ray got things started on the track for the Buckeyes, crossing the line in the 100-hurdle quarterfinals in a personal-best time of 13.33. Ray finished 16th overall, just shy of the Top-12 positioning necessary to qualify for the national championships.
Two Buckeyes qualified in 200-meter quarterfinals. Senior Aisha Cavin used a wind-aided personal-best time of 22.84 to finish ninth overall in the women’s competition, while freshman Nick Gray, already a qualifier in the 100-meter dash, crossed the finish line 10th overall in the men’s competition in 20.54 seconds.
OSU closed the meet by qualifying for the national championships in both the men’s and women’s 4x400-meter relay. First up, the women – freshman Karrington Winters, senior SoSo Walker, Cavin and senior Alexis Franklin – placed third in their heat and ninth overall in a time of 3:33.23. The men – redshirt senior Antonio Blanks, Gray, sophomore Jerry Jackson and senior Champ Page – finished second in their heat and fifth overall in a season-best time of 3:05.11.
Ohio State's NCAA Qualifiers
Zack Bazile – men's long jump
Antonio Blanks – men's 400-meter hurdles
Aisha Cavin – women’s 200-meter dash
Alexis Franklin – women’s 400-meter hurdles
Alyssa Gary – women’s shot put
Nick Gray – men’s 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash
J.C. Murasky – men’s shot put
Bill Stanley – men’s javelin
SoSo Walker – women's 400-meter dash
Men’s 4x400-meter relay (Antonio Blanks, Nick Gray, Jerry Jackson, Champ Page)
Women’s 4x400-meter relay (Karrington Winters, SoSo Walker, Aisha Cavin, Alexis Franklin)
Ohio State competes at the 2016 NCAA Division I Outdoor Championships June 8-11 in Eugene, Ore.