SHAWNEE, Okla. – Sophomore Benoit Nadin of the West Texas A&M men’s track & field team set a new personal best with a 14.98m triple jump on Friday at the Oklahoma Baptist Last Chance meet, likely punching his ticket to nationals. Two members of the No. 15 Lady Buffs also increased their provisional marks, including junior Rhemecka Graham who broke her own school record in the 800m run with a first place time of 2:11.95.
The OBU Last Chance meet, originally scheduled for Thursday, was pushed back to Friday afternoon due to inclement weather in the Shawnee, Okla. area. It was the last meet for the Buffs and Lady Buffs before the National Championship.
Nadin finished first in the men’s triple jump field with his mark of 14.98m (49’-1.75”), climbing him up seven spots in the national rankings from 20th to 13th. His previous best this season was 14.79m. He was the only member of the Buffs’ squad able to increase his provisional mark in Friday’s meet.
Junior Kemarki Absalom finished first in the long jump with a mark of 6.76m while also placing seventh in the 200m dash with a time of 22.33. Both of the Buffs’ provisional qualifiers in hurdles also competed this afternoon. Junior Arnau Erta came within a hundredth of a second of his best time the season as he finished second in the 110m hurdles at 14.39. Junior Josh Helom then topped the field in the 400m hurdles as he crossed the line at 53.01.
In the men’s 1500m run, junior Armando Rueda finished first as he set a new PR with a time of 3:55.79. Sophomore Zach Weatherly topped the field in both shot put (16.46m) and discus (51.20m).
Both of the Lady Buffs competing on Friday moved up in the national ranks. Senior Casey Nelson put herself within the bubble range on the national list as she now sits in 23rd for discus after a first place mark of 45.52m today. Graham then broke her own school record in the 800m with a time of 2:11.95, moving her from 38th to 30th in the country.
WT currently has 31 total provisional qualifying marks between the men and women. Individuals who qualify will compete in the NCAA Division II National Championship on May 22-24 in Allendale, Mich.
On average, most individual events at nationals will feature approximately 20 athletes or fewer, with rankings 18-22 being closely on the bubble. However, other factors will also affect the number of athletes who qualify. Relays will usually hold about 14-16 teams at nationals. Qualifiers will be announced toward the middle of next week.
Below you can find a full list of every WT provisional qualifier along with their national ranking:
MEN’S PROVISIONAL QUALIFIERS
200m: Jerell Banks (21.23, 20th)
400m: Kennedy Prescott (47.86, 29th)
1500m: Baptiste Moreu (3:51.05, 22nd)
110mH: Arnau Erta (14.38, 20th)
400mH: Josh Helom (52.73, 21st)
4x100m: Absalom, Banks, Dennis, Ridge (41.09, 33rd/21st)
4x400m: Prescott, Davis, Dennis, Helom (3:13.64, 30th/23rd)
High Jump: Micah Washington (2.05m, 26th)
Long Jump: Paul Alongo (7.43m, 13th)
Long Jump: Kemarki Absalom (7.22m, 33rd)
Triple Jump: Benoit Nadin (14.98m, 13th)
Triple Jump: Micah Washington (14.53m, 34th)
Shot Put: Zach Weatherly (17.83m, 7th)
Discus: Zach Weatherly (51.34m, 19th)
Discus: Brady Sanders (49.70m, 34th)
WOMEN’S PROVISIONAL QUALIFIERS
100m: Libby Strickland (11.69, 10th)
100m: Bri Leeper (11.99, 36th)
200m: Libby Strickland (23.78, 8th)
200m: Bri Leeper (24.44, 28th)
800m: Rhemecka Graham (2:11.95, 30th)
1500m: Mireia Guarner (4:31.29, 13th)
5000m: Haley Sparks (17:04.99, 28th)
100mH: Sharon Kwarula (13.60, 6th)
100mH: Rachel King (14.06, 21st)
400mH: Sharon Kwarula (1:00.32, 12th)
4x100m: Holiwell (Kwarula), Leeper, Strickland, King (46.20, 8th/5th)
4x400m: Kwarula, Graham, Thomas, Strickland (3:45.70, 23rd/14th)
High Jump: Libby Strickland (1.74m, 7th)
Long Jump: Libby Strickland (5.93m, 17th)
Triple Jump: Malika Ouedraogo (12.47m, 14th)
Discus: Casey Nelson (45.52m, 23rd)