Wildcats Headed to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships
June 9, 2009
Six Individuals and One Relay Headed to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Eight athletes from Wildcat Track & Field will represent Bethune-Cookman at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships next week in Fayetteville, Ark., at John McDonnell Field on the campus of the University of Arkansas. Competition begins Wednesday (June 10) and runs through Saturday (June 13). Four events for B-CU will have qualifying rounds on the opening day, Wednesday, while the remaining three events have qualifying rounds on Thursday. The Wildcats look to make a strong statement with the largest group at the NCAA Championships under the current coaching staff. Ronnie Ash is also looking to make the sweep of national hurdling titles, after taking the gold in the 60m Hurdles during the indoor season. Watch the events online and on CBS/College Sports (finals) to keep up with the progress of the Wildcats in their journey.
Opening the meet for B-CU, and competing in her final event as a Wildcat, Ron Danielle Williams takes on the field in the Shot Put. Williams qualified for the championships with her performance at the Penn Relays in late April. She qualified for this meet with a distance of 15.40m (50-6.29 ft.). Williams will compete Wednesday in the qualifying round, beginning at 4:15 p.m. CST.
Starting off the track events for the day, the B-CU men's 4 x 100m Relay team (composed of Dante Sales, Joel Redhead, Eric Cray, and Chris Herring) will take the track, looking to improve on their regional performance and earn a spot among the top teams in the NCAA. The team qualified for the championships with their strong performance at the regional meet last weekend in N.C. with a time of 39.70. The Wildcat relay team will compete in the semifinal round Wednesday at 5:15 p.m. CST.
Next up for B-CU is the 100m Dash. Both men's and women's teams earned a spot representing B-CU in this event. Dianne Munroe is competing in the 100m Dash representing the women, after earning a qualification with her time of 11.47 at the MEAC Championships on May 1. Munroe will compete in the event's first round on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. CST. Representing the men, freshman Dante Sales makes his first appearance in the 100m Dash at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Sales also made his qualification at the MEAC Championships, turning in a time of 10.34. His first round competition will directly follow the women, beginning at 6:15 p.m. CST and will wrap up the opening day of competition for the Wildcats.
On Day Two of the Championships, the track events again start in the late afternoon, with B-CU competing in the first event of the day. Senior Tavia Burke looks to advance and earn one more race as a Wildcat as she competes in the 100m Hurdles. Burke qualified for the meet with her performance at the Penn Relays in April, turning in a time of 13.29. The first round of the hurdles begins at 5:30 p.m. CST.
Next on the slate for the Wildcats, Ronnie Ash looks to take the first step in securing a sweep of NCAA Hurdling Titles in the 08-09 season, as he competes in the first round of the 110m Hurdles, beginning at 5:50 p.m. CST. Ash qualified for the Championships with a first-place East Region finish, in addition to improving his seed time to 13.42. Heading into the meet, Ash is narrowly ranked behind Jason Richardson of South Carolina, who he defeated to earn the gold at the NCAA East Regional Championships this past weekend.
The final preliminary event for Bethune-Cookman on Day Two is the 200m Dash. Senior Joel Redhead is looking for his opportunity to step it up and shine under the national spotlight. An accomplished sprinter, who is expected to compete for his home nation of Grenada at the next World Championships, Redhead looks to extend his Wildcat career and compete for an NCAA title. Redhead qualified for the Championships with a strong race at the East Region meet, turning in a time of 20.67. The 200m Dash semifinal begins Thursday at 7:45 p.m. CST.
CBS will be airing the championships. They are scheduled to go live from the track Friday, June 12, 6-9 p.m. on CBS College Sports (Brighthouse Channel 106) and Saturday, June 13, 12-2 p.m. on CBS (Brighthouse Channel 6 & 1060 in HD). All times CST. These broadcasts are for the event finals only. In order to watch the early events live, fans must go to the following links to watch via webcast: Wednesday Events <http://all-access.cbssports.com/player.html?code=ncaa&media=129515> (begins at 10:30 a.m. CST); Thursday Events <http://all-access.cbssports.com/player.html?code=ncaa&media=129516> (begins at 10:30 a.m. CST).
The Wildcat Track & Field team has received additional local coverage this week, as the Daytona Beach News-Journal recently covered the B-CU team's upcoming journey in this article <http://www.news-journalonline.com/NewsJournalOnline/Sports/CollegeSports/sptTRAKC01060109.htm> .
The Wildcats enter the preliminary rounds of the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships with extreme focus and their goals set for advancement. There is a lot of potential in this season's B-CU team, and great opportunities with strong performances early. Stay tuned to www.BCCathletics.com <http://www.bccathletics.com/> for event results and recaps.
Let's Go Wildcats!
About Bethune Cookman University:
Founded in 1904 by Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) today sustains her legacy of faith, scholarship and service through its relationship with the United Methodist Church and its commitment to academic excellence and civic engagement. B-CU offers more than 40 degrees on its main campus and online college. Located in Daytona Beach, B-CU is one of three private, historically black colleges in the state of Florida. The institution boasts a diverse and international faculty and student body of more than 4,000. For more information, visit www.cookman.edu.