Texas Bound For West Preliminary|
May 24, 2017
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - The UNLV track & field team will have nine of its own participate in eight events at the NCAA West Preliminary Thursday through Saturday in Austin, Texas. The three-day meet will be contested at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the campus of the University of Texas.
The West Preliminary is one of two qualifying meets the NCAA will hold before its Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon, on June 7-10. The East Preliminary will run concurrently - with the West - in Lexington, Kentucky., at the University of Kentucky.
The Scarlet & Gray will have four of its nine student-athletes in action Thursday.
Destiny Smith-Barnett, Najia Hudspeth and Drea Austin (Las Vegas/Foothill HS) kick things off at 6:30 pm CT (4:30 p.m. PT) in the 100m. Smith-Barnett enters the meet at the top spot behind a personal-best time of 10.97, which was registered at the MW Outdoors, while Hudspeth and Austin sits 26th and 41st, respectively.
Mandy Chitwood (Las Vegas/Canyon Springs HS) will close out day one in the 800m at 8:10 p.m. CT (6:10 p.m. PT). Chitwood, who is fifth all-time in program history in the 800m, is seeded 28th behind a personal-best time of 2:07.55 tallied at the Stanford Invitational.
Kaysee Pilgrim and hurdler's Taylor Pegram and Jaela Williams will start Friday's slate of events at 4:30 p.m. CT (2:30 p.m. PT) in the high jump and 100m hurdles, respectively. Pilgrim carries a program-best distance of 6-2.75 (1.90m), which occurred at the MW Outdoors, while Pegram (13.15) and Williams (13.58) ranks 17th and 40th, respectively.
Hudspeth (12th: 22.96), Smith-Barnett (13th: 22.98) and Austin (36th: 23.51) will also have a go Friday in the 200m at 7:30 p.m. CT (5:30 pm. PT).
The 4x100m relay team (sixth: 43.93) of Smith-Barnett, Hudspeth, Austin, Kaysha Love and Pegram will have to wait until Saturday 6:00 p.m. CT (4:00 p.m. PT). The 4x400m relay squad, which is ranked 23rd (3:38.89), will close out the track portion of the day and be comprised of Chitwood, Austin, the Hudspeth twins and Micayla Coquia (Las Vegas/Legacy HS).
Pilgrim, who is in the high jump, is the lone Rebel entered that will only be contested one day, while the remainder must advance out of their first rounds to the quarterfinals over consecutive days.
The top 12 student-athletes from each event will advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships next month in Eugene.