Lady Raiders Close West Preliminaries With Strong Showing

Cierra White qualified for the NCAA Championships in two individual events and on both relays.

May 26, 2013

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AUSTIN, Texas - Texas Tech put the finishing touches on a successful showing at the 2013 NCAA West Preliminaries on a muggy Saturday evening in Austin. In an impressive showing from the women's team, four Lady Raiders and two Lady Raider relays punched tickets to the NCAA Championship meet on the final day of competition at Mike A. Myers Stadium.

Throughout the three-day meet, the No. 16 Red Raiders and No. 20 Lady Raiders officially qualified nine athletes in 12 separate events for the national meet scheduled for June 5-8 in Eugene, Ore. Tech qualified three athletes in multiple individual events.

"Our women's team was pretty incredible today," head coach Wes Kittley said. "Both relay teams qualified, which we were hoping would, and both our hurdlers Le'Tristan Pledger and Katie Grimes - they really ran tough today. Cierra [White] also came through again tonight in the 200-meters, and I'm just really proud of them."

White, the 2013 Big 12 100-meter Champion, turned in another sensational performance Saturday. The Philadelphia native opened the full day by qualifying for the national meet in the 200-meter dash clocking a time of 23.28 seconds. She then went on to run the opening leg of the 4x100 meter relay and closed the evening with a strong second leg of the 4x400 relay.

For the fourth straight year the Lady Raiders will be sending both a 4x100 and 4x400 relay to the NCAA Championships.

 In the opening running event of the evening, the Lady Raider 4x100 squad, comprised of White, Candace Jackson, Olivia Lewis and Amoy Blake clocked a time of 44.92 seconds. The 4x400 relay, comprised of Christen Rivers, White, Jackson and Blake, later closed the night with a time of 3:34.12 and secured the final qualifying spot.  

In the 100-meter hurdles, Grimes broke her own school record and punched her second straight ticket to the 2013 NCAA Championships clocking a 13.10 while finishing second in her heat. Pledger then followed and crossed the finish line fourth in her heat and qualified based on time with a 13.29.

Pledger also qualified for the NCAA Championships in the long jump on Thursday.

Texas Tech redshirt freshman thrower Hannah Carson qualified for her first NCAA Championship meet in the javelin with a throw of 50.58-meters (165-feet 11 inches). The Chandler, Ariz. native finished fourth overall in the competition and holds the school record in the event. 

The 2013 NCAA Championships are scheduled for June 5-8 at historic Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus.





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