COURTESY: Arkansas State
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (5/31/14) – Arkansas State University senior Sharika Nelvis qualified for her second running event at the upcoming 2014 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships by winning her 100-meter hurdles heat at this Saturday’s (May 31) NCAA-I West Region Preliminaries Championships in Fayetteville, Ark.
Nelvis, who also qualified for nationals in the 100-meter dash held Friday (May 30) at the University of Arkansas’ John McDonnell Field, will be making her third straight national meet appearance in the 100-meter hurdles as the two-time (2012-13) U.S. Track and Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-America selection ran an all conditions personal-best 12.66 time to not only win her heat but register the event’s fastest time overall. Nelvis’ school-outdoor record time shattered her previous A-State best time of 12.67 set at the 2014 Sun Belt Conference (SBC) Outdoor Track and Field Championships (May 11).
The top three finishers in each of the three 100-meter hurdles heats at the NCAA West Preliminaries along with the next three fastest times overall earned a trip to the national championship meet. This year’s NCAA Championship will be held June 11-14 at the University of Oregon’s Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
Nelvis, the 2013-14 SBC Female Athlete of the Year, was A-State’s lone participant in the third and final day of the 2014 NCAA West Preliminaries. The three-time (2012-14) SBC Women’s Most Outstanding Outdoor Track Performer turned in the fastest 100-meter hurdles time and was .18 seconds better than the second-best time of 12.84, which was recorded by Baylor’s Tiffani McReynolds. Last season at the 2013 West Preliminaries in Austin, Texas, Nelvis was confronted with windy conditions and turned in a 13.06 to tie for the West Prelims’ fastest time en route to qualifying for nationals.
“I’m happy with Sharika’s performance tonight in winning the (West) regional,” said A-State head coach Jim Patchell. “I’m also proud of those who competed for us here (West Prelims). We have three who will be moving on to the finals and we will begin preparation next week toward a great national meet in Eugene.”
A-State will be sending three athletes in four events for competition at the national meet. Sharika Nelvis will be competing in both the 100-meter dash and 100-meter hurdles while senior Chris Nicasio makes his nationals’ debut in the men’s hammer throw as will freshman Roelf Pienaar in the men’s long jump.
2014 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships
Eugene, Oregon – June 11-14
Arkansas State’s National Qualifiers
100-Meter Dash – Sharika Nelvis
100-Meter Hurdles – Sharika Nelvis
Long Jump – Roelf Pienaar
Hammer Throw – Chris Nicasio