Parker Concludes Season in 800-meter NCAA Quarters
May 26, 2017
After running the eighth-fastest time (2:07.77) out of 48 runners on Thursday to qualify for Friday's quarterfinal round, Parker's time came in nearly 6 seconds slower (2:13.38) as she failed to qualify among the top-12 finishers that advanced to the National Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
The Neenah, Wis., native raced under more difficult conditions on Friday as temperatures were hovering around 15 degrees warmer (95 degrees) as compared to her race on Thursday, which may have played a role, in addition to, having only raced on back-to-back days on one or two occasions this season.
"Her heat went out a little faster than she was expecting," head coach Bert Rogers said. "She tried to stick to her own race and hope the field would come back, but just did not have enough left."
Parker entered the season with her main event being the 1,500 meters, setting the fourth-fastest time (4:25.23) all-time at MU. Later on in the year, she came on strong in the 800 meters and, at the UW Alumni Classic (May 5), set the school record with a time of 2:06.97.
With one outdoor season of eligibility remaining and high expectations in both events, Parker will not only have her eyes set on returning to regionals, but her first trip to nationals as well.
"She had a heck of a season," Rogers said. "This experience will be big and we'll be looking to continue to build off of this. Going into the year, this wasn't something that we really predicted as she considers herself more of a miler, so hopefully, we can look forward to doing some damage in both events next year."
The Golden Eagles feature one remaining regional qualifier, freshman Daniel Armstrong, who will compete in the second flight of the high jump on Saturday at 6 p.m. Central time.
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