May 17, 2012
Collin Shurbet and Alexander Zinchenko will represent the Rice Owls men's track and field squad the NCAA West Preliminary Round held in Austin, May 24-26. Action takes place at Mike A. Myers Stadium on the University of Texas campus.
Also, decathlete Clayton Chaney (Bellville, Texas) had his ticket punched for the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championship held June 6-9 in Des Moines and hosted by Drake University. Chaney won the Conference USA decathlon title with a career-best 7475 points. He is one of 24 competitors vying for the NCAA decathlon title and he enters ranked 23rd.
The top 12 finishers of each event from the East and West will advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championship.
"Right now, I am happy and a bit disappointed," said Owl head coach Jon Warren. "I am thrilled that Clayton Chaney has qualified for the NCAA final round in the decathlon (the only event that by passes the first round). I am also happy to see Collin Shurbet finally get a chance to run his event, the 400m hurdles, at the NCAA first round. Last year, he gave up a chance to run it to focus on the 4x400 relay. While we were a good 4x400, his real event is the hurdles. Alex Zinchenko returns in the shot put and he is also throwing the discus this year. He has looked pretty good and I think he is getting better with each meet so big things may happen for him in Austin.
"My disappointment comes for Gabe Cuadra and James llamas. They both had great years and posted times in the 10K and the 3000 steeplechase that would have gotten in the meet in all other years, but they just missed out this year."
Shurbet is a senior from San Antonio and is ranked 41st in the 400m hurdles with a time of 52.13.
Senior thrower Zinchenko, from Lisbon, Portugal, enters competition rated 32nd in shot put (17.56m/57-7.5) and 44th in the discus (52.59m/172-6).
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