ST LOIUS, Mo./CHARLESTON, Ill. – With Friday blustery cold and Saturday sunny and mild, the Jekyll and Hyde weather didn't stop the Olivet Nazarene University track and field teams from some strong performances at the two-day Big blue Classic hosted by Eastern Illinois University and the Washington Invite hosted by Washington University (Mo.). The Tigers added five automatic qualifications and two provisional for the upcoming NAIA Outdoor National Championships.
Sarah Ray (SR/Warsaw, Ind.) qualified for her fourth and final outdoor championships, posting a 37:25.50 in the 10,000m run. The mark is currently the fourth best in the NAIA. Also on the track, Alexa Beezhold (JR/St. John, Ind.) posted the fourth best time in the country in the 800m run, crossing the finish line in 2:14.26. Beezhold was the highest finishing NAIA participant at sixth place among the sea of NCAA DI and DII athletes.
Kylie Bradley (SR/Portland, Tenn.) converted her provisional qualification from last week to an automatic trip to Alabama with a 5.75m (18' 10.5") mark in the long jump. The mark is currently seventh nationally.
In the throwing rings, the Tigers were simply dominating, holding their own with the NCAA Division I and II competition. In the shot put, Lea Bock (SO/Salem, Ohio) finished fifth overall with a 13.15m (43' 1.75") throw, while Kylie Davis (SO/Eureka, Ill.) was right behind at 13.13m (43' 1") in sixth place. Davis finished sixth in the discus with a 44.74m (146' 9") throw, earning her post season trip south. Bradley became the first due-A standard qualifier for the Tigers, adding a first place throw in the javelin at 42.88m (140.8") and set a new Olivet record in the process.
Other notable performances:
Olivet will return to action on Friday, April 7 at the Knight Open hosted by Marian University (Ind.). The meet is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. in Indianapolis, Indiana.