MINNEAPOLIS – Nineteen individuals from the No. 11 University of Minnesota women's track & field team are among the declared competitors for the 2018 NCAA West Prelim hosted by California State University, Sacramento and the Sacramento Sports Commission next Thursday, May 24 through Saturday, May 26. The 19 Gophers have secured 23 entries in 14 different events at the NCAA West Prelim.
The qualifiers out of the East and West preliminary meets will advance to the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships held June 6-9 in Eugene, Ore.
At the NCAA West Prelim, Minnesota's 19 representatives will compete in 14 different events with seven Gophers competing in multiple events. For the fourth-straight year, Agnes Esser and Emma Spagnola both qualified in two events as Esser will compete in both hammer throw and discus while Spagnola is a qualifier in both the 100m hurdles and 400m hurdles.
Emerald Egwim and Titania Markland each qualifed in both the open 400m and the 4x400m relay while Rachel Schow also qualified in multiple events, making her second appearance in the 400m hurdles along with being part of the 4x400m relay.
Kiley Sabin is set to compete in both the shot put and the discus for the second-straight season as well; she is now a three-time shot put qualifier. Meanwhile, in her first NCAA West Prelim appearance, Nayoka Clunis will compete in both shot put and hammer throw.
Nicolle Murphy, Egwim, Esser, Markland, and Spagnola lead the way as four-time NCAA West Prelim qualifiers while Madeline Strandemo, Heta Tuuri, Shanique Wright, and Sabin are making their third NCAA preliminary round appearances.
Minnesota's 19 qualifiers this season is the most for the program since sending 20 student-athletes to the preliminary round in 2016. In total, Minnesota's list of qualifiers includes 13 returners and six first-timers.
The East Preliminary and West Preliminary meets are scheduled for May 24-26 with the West Prelim in Sacramento, Calif., and the East Prelim in Tampa, Fla. The top 12 individual competitors and top 12 relay teams from each preliminary round site advance to the NCAA national championship.
For the heptathlon and decathlon, the top 24 declared student-athletes in each event based on their position on the national descending-order list are accepted into the NCAA Championships. Among declared athletes, Ayesha Champagnie ranks 10th with 5,821 points in the heptathlon heading into the national championship.
The individual event student-athletes and relay teams accepted into the NCAA Championships based on their performance at preliminary round competition will be announced and posted on NCAA.com the week prior to the national meet.
2018 Gopher NCAA West Preliminary Competitors
Ayesha Champagnie, javelin
Nayoka Clunis, shot put, hammer throw
Emerald Egwim***, 400m, 4x400m relay
Agnes Esser***, discus, hammer throw
Bethany Hasz, 5,000m
Megan Hasz, 10,000m
Val Larson, 4x400m relay
Titania Markland***, 400m, 4x400m relay
Nicolle Murphy***, javelin
Shay Nielsen*, shot put
Temi Ogunrinde*, hammer throw
Karlie Place*, pole vault
Ashley Ramacher, high jump
Kiley Sabin**, shot put, discus
Rachel Schow*, 400m hurdles, 4x400m relay
Emma Spagnola***, 100m hurdles, 400m hurdles
Madeline Strandemo**, 3,000m steeplechase
Heta Tuuri**, high jump
Shanique Wright**, triple jump
* Indicates number of previous years appearing at the NCAA West Prelim.
2018 Gopher NCAA West Preliminary Competitors by Event
400m: Markland, Egwim
5,000m: B. Hasz
10,000m: M. Hasz
100m Hurdles: Spagnola
400m Hurdles: Spagnola, Schow
3,000m Steeplechase: Strandemo
4x400m Relay: Egwim, Schow, Markland, Larson
High Jump: Ramacher, Tuuri
Pole Vault: Place
Triple Jump: Wright
Shot Put: Sabin, Clunis, Nielsen
Discus: Esser, Sabin
Hammer Throw: Ogunrinde, Clunis, Esser
Javelin: Murphy, Champagnie
Going Pro: Emerald Egwim
5/23/2018 - W. Track & Field
Women's track student-athlete Emerald Egwim has been preparing for life after athletics even before she ran for the Golden Gophers.
Warm-Up Lap: Q&A with Kiley Sabin
5/22/2018 - W. Track & Field
Catch up with Gophers redshirt junior Kiley Sabin heading into the NCAA West Prelim.
No. 11 Gophers Set for NCAA West Prelim
5/21/2018 - W. Track & Field
Nineteen Gophers will represent the Maroon & Gold at the NCAA West Prelim in Sacramento, Calif., this week.