SACREMENTO, Calif. – Day One of the NCAA West Preliminary delivered five Texas Tech national championship-qualifying performances and six quarterfinal berths.
On the men's side, long jumpers Charles Brownand Odaine Lewis punched their tickets to Eugene, Ore., with jumps of 8.00m/26-3 and 7.74m/25-4.75, respectively. Brown's mark was the second highest at the West Prelims.
Junior pole vaulter Drew McMichael earned his first trip to nationals by clearing his first attempt at 5.25m/17-2.75. Teammate Brandon Bray wound up on the other side of the cutoff line after needing two attempts to clear the same height.
Freshman Norman Grimes earned the first quarterfinal advancement of the day in the 400-meter hurdles, running a 51.00 to finish second in the heat.
In the 100 meters, Divine Oduduru and Andrew Hudson placed first and third in the second heat to automatically qualify for the quarterfinals. Oduduru turned in a wind-aided time of 10.11 (+3.3), which marked the third-fastest time of the day, while Hudson turned in a 10.32 time.
Both C.J. Jones and Vincent Crisp advanced to the quarterfinals in the 800-meter with second-place finishes in their respective heats. Jones turned in a time of 1:51.18, before Crisp clocked a 1:49.18 performance.
Tech will be the only school in the country with two female high jumpers heading to Eugene in juniors Cyre Virgo and Zarriea Willis. Virgo ranked fourth in Sacramento after clearing 1.75m/5-8.75 on her first attempt and 1.80m/5-10.75 with her second. Willis was right behind clearing both marks on her second tries.
Kirsten Johnson's took second in her heat in the 400-meter hurdles for a quarterfinal performance, clocking a time of 59.25
Tiffani Johnson took third in her heat in the 100-meter dash to move to Friday's quarterfinals, notching a time of 11.65.
Rounding out the qualifying performances was Sara Limp in the 400 meters, whose time of 53.93 earned her a spot in Friday's quarterfinal.
Tomorrow's competition will pick up at noon for the Red Raiders, with Happiness Okeke and Seasons Usual competing in the discus. Keep up with Texas Tech track & field by following the Red Raiders at @TexasTechTF on Twitter and online at www.TexasTech.com.