Tech Qualifiers Set For NCAA West Preliminaries

Texas Tech qualified 23 athletes for the NCAA West Preliminaries set for next week in Austin.

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May 16, 2013

LUBBOCK, Texas -Two weeks removed from a strong performance at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships, the Texas Tech track and field program learned today it qualified 25 athletes for the NCAA West Preliminaries. The meet, scheduled for May 23-25 in Austin, serves as the first round of the NCAA Championships with the top-12 finishers in each event advancing to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore.

Texas Tech also declared and qualified three relays including both the reigning All-American Lady Raider 4x100 and 4x400 relays. The Red Raider 4x100 also qualified, and will look for its second straight trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships.  Six Texas Tech athletes will make the trip looking to punch their second consecutive trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships.

Meanwhile, five athletes qualified in multiple events.

Texas Tech is coming off an impressive performance at the 2013 Big 12 Outdoor Championships in Waco where the Red Raiders finished third overall with 114.5 points - the highest point total since the squad won the conference championship in 2005.

The contingent includes the No. 1 long jumper in the West Region in senior Bryce Lamb. Lamb won the Big 12 Championship in the event two weeks ago where he recorded a season-best leap of 8.03-meters (26-feet 4.25 inches). The performance marked Texas Tech's first-ever outdoor conference championship in the event.

Lamb also enters the meet No. 4 in the triple jump and is a member of the qualifying Red Raider 4x100 relay team. The decorated senior won the NCAA Indoor Triple Jump title in March.

Meanwhile, stellar sophomore sprinter and Big 12 100-meter Champion Cierra White will travel to Austin as the owner of top-5 times in each  the 100-meter dash and the 200-meter dash - each of which are school records. White is No. 2 in the region in the 100-meter dash (season-best altitude adjusted of 11.12) and No. 4 in the 200-meter dash (season best 22.89).

Senior Lady Raider Katie Grimes also enters the meet with a top-5 regional time and looking to make her second consecutive trip to the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 100-meter hurdles. The Canyon, Texas native holds the No. 4 time in the event with a career-best 12.99 recorded at the prestigious Mt. SAC Relays.

Lady Raider senior Candace Jackson also qualified in each the 100-meter and 200-meter dash.

Texas Tech sophomore thrower Kole Weldon will also look to advance to his second consecutive NCAA Outdoor Championship as he enters the meet as the No. 2 thrower in the men's shot put and No. 10 thrower in the men's discus. Weldon finished seventh in the finals of the discus at the 2012 NCAA West Preliminary to qualify for nationals as a freshman.

Junior Kyal Meyers (pole vault) and sophomore Jacorian Duffield (high jump) will also highlight the Red Raider field events as each will eye a second consecutive trip the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Duffield is coming off a runner-up finish at the Big 12 Championships where he cleared a season-best 2.17-meters (7'-1.50"). The mark is No. 7 in the West Region. Meanwhile, Meyers has cleared a season-best of 5.36-meters (17'-7.00") this season in the pole vault, which occurred in Austin at the Texas Relays. 




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