On the opening day of the NCAA East Preliminary, Florida saw 15 of its 23 competitors post qualifying marks.
This included a total of five who punched their ticket to Eugene, Oregon, to compete in the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
Leading the way was junior KeAndre Bates and freshman Grant Holloway, who finished first and second, respectively, in the men’s long jump. Bates, who is also the NCAA Indoor long jump champion, jumped for 8.15 meters, and was followed by Holloway’s 7.87-meter mark.
Junior Darrielle McQueen (fifth place) and sophomore Yanis David (ninth place) both made the cut in the women’s long jump. This is the second straight year that David has advanced to the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
A year after taking the top spot in the women’s javelin throw, senior Marija Vucenovic had to settle for runner-up, but she will advance for the fourth time since arriving in Gainesville. Vucenovic rounds out the list of five Gators who qualified for the Outdoor Championships
10 other gators qualified for the final rounds of their respective events today, including all four who took part in the 400-meter dash.
On the women’s side, sophomore Sharrika Barnett finished third, posting a time of 52.57 seconds, while junior Taylor Sharpe’s mark of 53.71 seconds was good enough for 18th.
For the men, sophomore Kunle Fasasi finished sixth and senior Nick Uruburu qualified at 18th.
Seniors Shayla Sanders and Ryan Clark took ninth place in the women’s and men’s 100-meter dash, while seniors TJ Holmes and Eric Futch both qualified in the men’s 400-meter hurdles for the second straight year. Holmes finished second while Futch took fifth place.
Seniors Andres Arroyo (fifth place) and Ryan Schnulle (16th) both qualified for the final round of the 800-meter, posting times of 1:48.94 and 1:49.80, respectively.
“We also had a good day qualifying on the track with the 400 hurdles and 400s, the 800. Shayla (Sanders) and Ryan (Clark) did a good job in the great job in the 100,” coach Mike Holloway said. “Overall, we had a great day. But today is over, and we have to come back tomorrow and, actually, turn up the intensity level a little bit.”
Friday’s competition starts at 2 p.m. and will be streamed on the SEC Network+ and Watch ESPN from 5:30-7:30 p.m. and then from 8:20-10:00 p.m.
In addition to the final rounds mentioned above, today’s lineup includes appearances by senior Kyra Jefferson and Grant Holloway, who is tied for the second-seed in the 110-meter hurdles.
Jefferson, who claimed the SEC title in the women’s 200-meter race, is the top-seed in the NCAA East Preliminary 200-meter.
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UF hurdler Eric Futch races during the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships on June 10, 2016, in Eugene, Oregon.