May 22, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS – Five Rice men’s track and field athletes qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, the NCAA Track and Field Committee announced on Thursday. Filip Drozdowski, Justin Gross, Evan Karakolis, Chris Pillow and Alex Weinheimer will compete in Fayetteville, Arkansas from May 29-31 in the West Preliminary Round with hopes of advancing to the NCAA Outdoor Championships, June 11-14 in Eugene, Oregon.
Drozdowski, a native of Torun, Poland, qualified for the 110m hurdles following a season-best time of 14.14 at the UTEP Invitational. Last weekend he placed fifth at the C-USA Outdoor Championships with a 14.15 in the 110m hurdles.
Gross, from Randallstown, Maryland, will advance to compete in the triple jump after setting a lifetime best mark of 7.43m (24-4.5) and a seventh place finish at the C-USA Outdoor Championships last weekend.
Karakolis, the defending C-USA champion in the javelin, will look to continue his stellar season in Arkansas after re-establishing his own school record with a throw of 70.80m (232-3.00) at the Virginia Challenge back on May 9. Karakolis, from Scarborough, Ontario, holds the seventh-best throw in the West region and the 19th-best mark in the nation.
Pillow has now qualified for the West Preliminary Round in back-to-back years after winning the C-USA Championship in the pole vault for a second straight year. A native of Mechanicsville, Virginia, Pillow set a lifetime-best mark of 5.50m (18-0.5) at the Texas Relays. That height was good enough for eighth-best in the region.
Weinheimer, from Boulder, Colorado, qualified for the 800m run with a time of 1:49.97 at the J. Fred Duckett Twilight, where he placed sixth. The senior also placed second in the event at the Victor Lopez Classic.