May 24, 2012
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Purdue opened up the first day of the NCAA Track & Field First Round on Thursday and a pair of Boilermakers has already qualified for the championships. Dani Bunch and Leah Eber finished in the top 12 which automatically qualifies them to advance.
Bunch was first to qualify as she finished eighth in the shot put. Bunch threw 15.97m (52-04.75) with her third throw which advanced her into the final round in seventh place. There, she was unable to improve her distance, but still advanced as only one other thrower could move past her in the finals. Terri Anderson also participated in the event. She finished 26th with a throw of 14.76m (48-05.25). Louisville took the top two spots in the event. Khadija Abdullah was first with a throw of 17.12m (56-02.00) while Chinwe Okoro finished second with a distance of 16.86m (55-03.75).
Eber didn’t take long to put her name toward the top of the long jump results. Her first jump went 6.17m (20-03.00) which put her in third. She quickly improved on that distance as her next mark was 6.31m (20-08.50) with her next jump. Eber would take two more attempts before passing on her final two opportunities and finish in fourth place. Chelsea Hayes of Louisiana Tech finished with the best mark as she leapt 6.66m (12-10.25). The top four finishers in the event were seniors.
Kari Shoolbraid advanced to the quarterfinals in the women’s 800m run. Shoolbraid finished 16th with a time of 2:07.43. That time was good for fourth place in her heat and was good enough to move on. In the quarterfinals, she will have to either finish in the top three in her race or be one of the next best three times.
Kaitlyn Brace finished 30th in the women’s javelin. The freshman was unable to qualify as her top mark of 40.79m (133-10) missed the final advancing mark by 14 feet, one inch. Kevin Griffith ran in the 800m run, but was also unable to advance. Griffith finished 36th with a time of 1:51.94. The top time on the day was by Virginia’s Lance Roller as he ran a 1:48.69.
The Boilermakers will continue action Friday. Live results can be found at PurdueSports.com. Complete results from Thursday’s action can be found here.