Marquette Prepares For NCAA Mideast Regional This Weekend
May 27, 2008
This weekend members of the Marquette track and field program will compete in the NCAA Mideast Regional Championships in Fayetteville, Ark. Freshman Tyler O'Brien is the lone Golden Eagle on the men's side to qualify for the event, while five women qualifiers ties a school record. The two-day meet, which runs May 30-31, will be held at the Randal Tyson Track Center on the University of Arkansas campus.
"For several of them, this is the first time they have qualified for the regional, so it's somewhat of a new experience," said head coach Bert Rogers. "But we felt the BIG EAST Championship prepared them well and there shouldn't be any surprises as to what they'll see. If we come away with a few [personal records], then we can't complain."
O'Brien hit the regional qualifying mark and broke the school record that stood for 28 years in the men's 200 meters with a time of 21.23 at Louisville on May 17. Marquette senior Cassie Peller will be competing in the women's 1,500 meters, her fourth time at a NCAA regional championship.
Also competing will be junior Carrie Schmid in the women's pole vault and sophomore Rachel Thiel in the shot put. Both are school-record holders in their respective events. Sophomore Jayne Grebinski will look to advance in the 5000m Friday afternoon, an event she also holds Marquette's top mark in. Unable to compete is sophomore high jumper Erynn James, who missed a good portion of the outdoor season due to a foot injury.
Peller has narrowly missed the national qualifying mark on a few occasions and is close to breaking through, according to Rogers. The news on James is especially disheartening considering James was the highest-rated Golden Eagle in her respective event.