Big West Sends Contingent of 94 To NCAA West Preliminary
Links associated with this release:
NCAA Division I Track and Field West Preliminary Round Central
Big West Participants List | Preliminary Round Schedule of Events
Track and Field Weekly Release No. 9
Women's Heat Sheets (Thursday) | Men's Heat Sheets (Thursday)
Ninety-four track and field athletes will represent the Big West at the NCAA West Preliminary Round, May 26-28 at Rock Chalk Park in Lawrence, Kansas.
Qualifying individuals advance to the 2016 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon on June 8-11. Athletes who rank among the top-48 in their respective events qualified for the West Preliminary Round. The best 24 relay times also were entered into the meet. Athletes finishing with the top-12 times/marks and the top 12 relay teams at both the East and West Prelims qualify for the NCAA Championships. There is no decathlon or heptathlon competition at the preliminary rounds. The top-24 in those events nationally are automatic qualifiers to the NCAA Championships.
The 94 representatives are entered in 100 events over the three-day period. Long Beach State is sending the largest contingent with 16 competitors, while UC Davis (13), UC Santa Barbara (12), UC Riverside (11) and Cal Poly (11) are also heavily represented. Cal State Fullerton and UC Irvine, with nine athletes apiece, join CSUN (8) and Hawai‘i (5) among a conference group seeking to reach the national meet. Video streaming of the West Preliminary will be available at KUAthletics.com, with coverage beginning at 4:25 p.m. CT on Thursday, 4:55 p.m. CT on Friday and 5:55 p.m. CT on Saturday.
Ten Ranked In Top-10 Regionally
Among the entries at the West Preliminary Round, there are 10 Big West athletes ranked in the top-10 of their respective events.
Long Beach State freshman Kemonie Briggs is No. 1 in the men’s pole vault. He won the Big West long jump title with a wind-aided personal best 26-02.25, becoming the first long jumper to reach 26 feet at the conference championships since 1984. He competed in his first long jump event at the Big West Challenge on April 8 and finished second at 24-00.75.
Willie Alexander is the 49er record holder in the men’s long jump, as he bettered his previous mark by a quarter of an inch with a leap of 25-10.25 at the Big West Championships. He broke a 20-year old school record at the USC Trojan Invitational in March with a then-personal best 25-10. Alexander, the 2014 NCAA runner-up in the long jump, is seeded No. 6 at the West Preliminary. The senior is also entered in the triple jump.
Three additional 49ers are listed with top-10 marks in various field events. Junior James Hubbard is No. 10 in the men’s discus with a top mark of 190-02. In the men’s hammer, junior Robert Marlow is ranked No. 6 (215-02) and senior Kody Robison is No. 7 (214-01).
UC Irvine junior Lloyd Sicard captured his second straight gold in the men’s 110-meter hurdles at the conference meet, posting a season-best time of 13.64 seconds, just missing the meet record of 13.60. Sicard owns the seventh-fastest 110m hurdles time in the west region.
UC Santa Barbara senior Shyan Vaziri is No. 9 in the men’s 1500 meters with a time of 3:42.23. The Big West Men’s Co-Track Athlete of the Year with Sicard, Vaziri is the school record holder in the event.
Three women will be vying for top marks with UC Riverside duo Tayler Fleming and Breana Jemison heading the list, joined by CSUN junior Breanna Cueva. Fleming, a sophomore, won the long jump at the Big West Championships with a personal-best mark of 20-11.75, the fifth-longest leap in the west region this year. That distance was the farthest by a Big West athlete since 1992.
Highlander teammate Jemison broke the Big West meet record in the shot put with a towering throw of 56-11.50. The previous shot put record of 54-07.25 was set in 2003 by Cal Poly’s Stephanie Brown, who later went on to win the gold medal for the United States in the discus at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Jemison nearly broke Brown’s overall Big West record of 57 feet even from 2003. Jemison’s 56-11.50 is ranked No. 6 in the west region.
Cueva, who won the Big West discus title with a mark of 180-04, posted the farthest heave at a conference meet in 12 years. Her performance is ranked No. 9 among west region competitors.
Big West Represented On National Leaders List
Several Big West athletes have posted national leading marks in 2016. They are as follows:
Tayler Fleming, UC Riverside – Long Jump (20-11.75, Big West Multi Championship, May 6 – No. 18)
Breana Jemison, UC Riverside – Shot Put (56-11.50, Big West Championship, May 13 - No. 8)
Brianna Cueva, CSUN – Discus (180-04, Big West Championships, May 13 - No. 19)
Riley Cooks, Long Beach State – Heptathlon (5569, UC Riverside Spring Break Invite, Mar. 24 - No. 23)
Lloyd Sicard, UC Irvine – 110H (13.64, Big West Championships, May 13 - No. 14)
Kemonie Briggs, Long Beach State – Long Jump (26-02.25, Big West Championships, May 13 – No. 4)
Willie Alexander, Long Beach State – Long Jump (25-10.25, Big West Championships, May 13 - No. 12)
James Hubbard, Long Beach State – Discus (190-2, Trojan Invitational, Mar. 18 - No. 20)
Robert Marlow, Long Beach State – Hammer (215-2, Trojan Invitational, Mar. 18 - No. 25)