May 29, 2014
FAYETTEVILLE, Arkansas - Three Owls punched their tickets to the NCAA Championships on Thursday by finishing in the top 12 at the NCAA West Preliminary Rounds on day one of the meet on the campus of Arkansas. McKenzie Johnson, Cali Roper and Claire Uke all kicked off the postseason by finishing in the top 12 in their respective events at John McDonnell Field with still four events remaining over the next two days of competition.
"Tonight was a pretty special night going three-for-three in advancing our girls to Eugene," Rice women's track and field head coach Jim Bevan said. "Claire had a huge throw and just continues to get better and better. McKenzie fought through some elements that always occur in the pole vault and stuck with it and found a way to earn a spot. And Cali was just incredible, moving up 10 spots and earning a trip to Oregon as a freshman really says a lot. It's pretty neat to be sending a freshman, sophomore and junior to the next round."
Uke, a junior from Cedar Hill, Texas, saved her best for last with a throw of 17.16m (56-3.75) in the shot put on her final attempt to place second overall behind only Iowa State's Christina Hillman (17.37m). Uke's throw fell just shy of her personal best throw of 17.18m set at this year's C-USA Championships. Uke advances to Eugene for a second straight season.
Johnson, from San Diego, California, converted a height of 4.04m (13-3.00) to clinch the 12th and final qualifying spot in the pole vault to advance to her first-ever NCAA Championships. The sophomore got a bit of revenge from her freshman campaign when she NP'd at least year's West Preliminary Round in Austin.
Roper finished the evening by placing 12th on the first day's final event, climbing 10 spots from the start list with a time of 34:33.16. She finished nearly eight seconds ahead of Oregon State's Kinsey Gomez, who placed 13th.
The Owls still have four total competitors remaining with three set to compete on Friday. Uke will begin the day looking to advance in the discus at 3 p.m., followed by Daisy Ding in the triple jump (5 p.m.) and Heather Olson in the 3000m steeplechase (9:30 p.m.). Sophomore jumper Belle MacFarlane will then compete on Saturday at 6 p.m.
Pazo, Waite Ready for Olympics in Rio
08/04/2016 - Former Rice Owl greats Olaya Pazo (beach volleyball) and Lennie Waite (3000m steeplechase) will make their dreams come true in the upcoming days...
Valerie Tulloch Cramer Named a SWC HOF Inductee
08/03/2016 - Valerie Tulloch Cramer, one of the most decorated track and field athletes in Rice University history, is one of nine standouts who make up the...
Eight Owls Earn USTFCCCA All-Academic Honors
07/28/2016 - A total of eight Rice University student-athletes were recognized as U.S. Track & Field Cross Country Association (USTFCCCA) All-Academic honorees,...
Uke Nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year Award
07/27/2016 - Recent Rice track & field alumna Claire Uke (Cedar Hill, Texas) was named a 2016 Woman of the Year Honoree, as announced by the NCAA on Wednesday.
Bevan Announces Emily Massad Rabbitt Award
07/21/2016 - Rice University women’s track & field/cross country head coach Jim Bevan announced on Tuesday the creation of the Emily Massad Rabbitt Award.
MacFarlane, Ip Named C-USA Scholar-Athletes of ...
07/19/2016 - Belle MacFarlane and Katherine Ip have been named recipients of the 2015-16 Conference USA Scholar Athlete of the Year awards for their respective ...
Rice Earns C-USA Institutional Excellence Award
07/12/2016 - For the ninth time in the past 11 years, Rice University student-athletes earned the Conference USA Institutional Excellence Award in 2015-16 by...
Ince Places Eighth in Javelin at Olympic Trials
07/09/2016 - Former Rice Owl Ariana Ince battled a strong crosswind to place eighth overall in the finals of the javelin at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials...
- Top Videos /
- Online Store