Two Throwers Qualify for National Finals
EUGENE, Ore. - Four University of Nevada javelin throwers qualified for the 2011NCAA Preliminary Round that started Thursday hosted by the University of Oregon at Hayward field. Two of those throwers finished in the top 12 and qualified for the NCAA Championship Finals hosted at Drake Stadium on June 8-11.
A total of 48 throwers were in the field of the event where the top 16 after three throws then competed in three final throws. The top 12 after the finals then qualified for the final meet in two weeks. Freshman Sabine Kopplin led the charge for Nevada, placing eighth throwing 162'10" (49.63 meters). Kopplin's best throw of the day was her second as she committed fouls in rounds three, five and six. Kopplin won the silver medal in the event at the WAC Outdoor Championships and her best mark of the year is currently the second-best in school history.
Keeping the final season of her career alive, senior Marissa Hammond placed 12th 161'9" (49.32 meters). Hammond had six clean throws without committing a single foul. Her top mark came in her third throw of the day and was a lifetime best. Hammond's previous personal best was 155'1" set back in 2009.
Kopplin and Hammond now become the first Nevada student-athletes to qualify for the NCAA Championship final meet since 2008. In its history, Nevada has now had 13 student-athletes qualify for the final championships and seven of those have competed in the javelin.
Junior Sarah Nichols placed 38th in the javelin throwing 131'4" (40.04 meters). Senior Danille Stallworth threw 126'2" (38.46 meters) placing 41st.
Two other Nevada athletes were in competition on Thursday, but came short of advancing. Sophomore Samantha Diaz placed 29th in the 1,500-meters running 4:25.79. In her first of two events of the weekend, sophomore Deborah Amoah placed 36th in the long jump with a mark of 18'9.25" (5.72 meters).
Senior Constance McAlman will compete in the hammer at 10 a.m. on Friday and Amoah will return to compete in the triple jump at 3:15 p.m. McAlman will then return to action on Saturday in the discus at 10 a.m. Junior La Tijera Avery and senior Courtney Beasley will compete in the high jump on Saturday at 12:15 p.m. The most Nevada student-athletes to qualify for an NCAA final meet together is three, happening in 2004 and '06.