Action at NCAA Track and Field Championships will Start Thursday

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

MARIETTA, OHIO -- Willamette University athletes will compete in five events on the first day of the 2009 NCAA Division III Track and Field Championships on Thursday, May 21 at Marietta College. Willamette has a total of seven athletes at the NCAA Championships and will be represented in competition all three days.

The first three athletes to see action for WU on Thursday will be Brooke Smith (Sr., Idleyld Park, OR/Glide HS) in the heptathlon, Katie Peterson (So., Independence, OR/Central HS) in the women's javelin throw and Jacob Monroe (Sr., Keizer, OR/McNary HS) in the men's hammer throw. All three events are set to begin at 10 a.m. (PDT).

Smith's qualifying score in the heptathlon was 4,398 points. Peterson recorded a throw of 138'7" to qualify in the javelin and Monroe qualified in the hammer with a toss of 184'6".

Grant Piros (Sr., Newberg, OR/Newberg HS) will compete for the Bearcats in the men's javelin throw, which starts on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. (PDT). Piros, who will be the fourth thrower in the second of two heats, achieved a qualifying distance of 203'0" earlier this season.

Rounding out the list of WU participants on Thursday will be Maddie Coffman (Sr., Boise, ID/Boise HS) in the women's 1,500-meter run. Coffman registered a time of 4:34.24 to qualify for the NCAA Championships. She is slated for lane 9 in the second of two heats.

The men's hammer, women's javelin and men's javelin each will advance nine athletes into the finals, which will be held later on Thursday. The top four finishers in each heat of the 1,500, plus the next four fastest times, will move into the finals on Saturday. The heptathlon will conclude on Friday.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE
NCAA Division III Track & Field
National Championships
At Marietta College
Marietta, Ohio
May 21-23, 2009
Brooke Smith of Willamette will compete in the heptathlon on Thursday and Friday at the NCAA Championships.

Brooke Smith of Willamette will compete in the heptathlon on Thursday and Friday at the NCAA Championships.