By: Kenny Bybee (email@example.com)
NCAA West Prelims Results
LAWRENCE, KS – Rice senior thrower Claire Uke and junior jumper Daisy Ding each saved their best for last on Saturday at the NCAA West Prelims, clinching NCAA Outdoor National Championships berths on their final attempt in their respective events at Rock Chalk Park.
Uke, from Cedar Hill, Texas, will be making her third career appearance in Eugene, Oregon following a sixth place finish in the shot put. After an opening round throw of 16.40m, Uke fouled on her second attempt and was on the bubble to qualify still needing a big mark on her final attempt. The three-time All-American then delivered in the clutch with a season-best heave of 16.90m (55-5.50) to earn a trip to the west coast in two weeks.
Uke nearly qualified for the discus as well but finished 13th out of 48 competitors with her Friday mark of 52.88m (173-6). The event’s final flight had been pushed back from Friday due to inclement weather.
Ding, a native of Sydney, Australia, earned her second-straight trip to Eugene by also placing sixth in the triple jump. An outdoor First-Team All-American in 2015, Ding also clinched her berth to the National Championships in dramatic fashion with a season-best leap of 13.02m (42-8.75) on her final attempt.
“We had a pretty good day getting two in and just barely missing another,” Rice women’s T&F head coach Jim Bevan said. “I’m very proud of Claire, responding and getting a season-best and going back to the outdoor national meet for a third time. Daisy had her back against the wall and had to respond in the last round, and just like at conference, responded with her season-best.”
Rice junior Cybil Obiozor also competed in the triple jump, finishing 27th with a mark of 12.52m (41-1.00) while sophomore Elsa Racasan placed 34th in the 1500m (4:29.63) making her first career NCAA West Prelims performance.
“Cybil almost got there with a big third jump but had a small foul,” said Bevan. “Elsa rounded out the day with a hard-fought race in the wind, moving up twice, but not being able to advance. Both she and Cybil have had a great year. Now we’re on to Eugene!”