COLUMBUS, Ohio – Zack Bazile earned First Team All-America honors in the long jump and Nick Gray, along with the 4x400-meter relay team, advanced to finals on the track on the first day of men’s competition at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships Wednesday in Eugene, Ore.
Bazile, a sophomore from Montvale, N.J., earned the first First Team All-America award of his career – and second All-America accolade overall – with an eighth-place jump of 7.58 meters (24-10.50). Bazile is the first Buckeye All-American in the outdoor long jump since Michael Hartfield in 2013.
Gray, a native of Pickerington, Ohio, was spectacular in semifinal races on the track for the Buckeyes. In the 200-meter dash, he placed second in his heat in a time of 20.65 to secure an automatic qualifying spot despite a ninth-place overall finish. He was also 14th overall in the 100-meter dash in 10.34 seconds, earning Second Team All-America honors in the event.
Gray also joined redshirt senior Antonio Blanks, sophomore Jerry Jackson and senior Champ Page in the 4x400-meter relay semifinals. Competing in the third and final heat, Ohio State finished third in a time of 3:05.99, initially falling just shy of the finals by finishing a step behind second-place Purdue (3:05.95) and the automatic qualifying spot. However, heat winner Stephen F. Austin was disqualified for stepping over the line on the inside of its lane while rounding a curve, moving the Buckeyes into second place and securing a ticket to Friday’s final.
Three individual Buckeyes also claimed Honorable Mention All-America honors Wednesday for the men of the Scarlet and Gray:
• Blanks, a native of Dayton, Ohio, was 18th overall in the 400-meter hurdles in a time of 52.30, the 10th All-America award of his OSU career;
• Senior J.C. Murasky, from Zanesville, Ohio, was 22nd overall in the shot put (18.32 meters/60-1.25), collecting his third All-America award as a Buckeye;
• Redshirt junior Bill Stanley was 23rd overall in the javelin (65.93 meters/216-3.00), the second All-America accolade for the South Park, Pa., native.
The Buckeye women begin their championship journey Thursday starting at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN. Gray runs in the 200-meter national championship Friday at Hayward Field at approximately 10:13 p.m. ET, while the 4x4 races at around 10:51 p.m. on ESPN.