June 7, 2012
IRVING, Texas -
After day one of the 2012 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Conference USA had two individuals and one relay team advance to the finals. The league also had one athlete earn USTFCCCA All-America second team honors at the Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa.
Two UCF sprinters advanced to Friday's 100-meter finals with strong performances in the semifinals. Sophomore Aurieyall Scott and freshman Octavious Freeman both automatically qualified for Friday's race, scheduled for 7:02 p.m. ET, by crossing the finish line with one of the top-two fastest times of their respective heats.
Scott clocked a time of 11.32 (-1.2) to finish second in the first heat while Freeman clocked the third-fastest time of the day overall at 11.12 (+1.7). The pair will look to medal once again after taking silver and bronze at the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 60 meters.
Senior Sheila Paul rounded out the Knights trio with a season-best time of 11.39 (+1.7) to finish 13th overall. Houston's Grecia Bolton and Southern Miss' Tori Bowie also competed in the 100m, but neither advancing to the finals. Bolton clocked a time of 11.36 (+1.7) for 11th best and Bowie finished 18th in 11.48 (+1.7). All three runners were in heat two.
Tulane senior Ana Ruzevic capped off her career by grabbing All-America second team honors in the women's javelin. She finished 15th with a throw of 46.74-meters (153-4) to grab All-America accolades for the second-straight season.
Houston's dominant 4x100m women's relay team clocked the sixth-fastest time of 43.91 in the semifinals to advance to Saturday's finals. The quartet of Tai'shea Reese, Kiersten Brewer, Alicia Perkins and Grecia Bolton have secured USTFCCCA first team All-America honors.
Rice decathlete Clayton Chaney sits in 14th place after day one of decathlon competition. Chaney has scored 3,886 points after five events. Chaney's career-high decathlon point total is 7,475 points set in winning the 2012 Conference USA gold. Thursday's final five events are the 110m hurdles, pole vault, javelin, and 1500m.
East Carolina's Quinton Harley finished 20th in the 400-meter hurdles. The junior posted a time of 51.96 to take sixth in the second heat of the race. He would have had to finish in the top two of his grouping or have one of the two next-fastest times to advance to the finals.
Junior Richard Collingwood of Southern Miss competed in the discus but failed to record a legal throw in three attempts. The duo was making their first NCAA Championship appearance. Sophomore Rachel Polk also competed in the women's discus where she placed 23 overall with a toss of 46.53m (152-8).
NCAA championship action continues Thursday at 2:30 p.m. CT with the men's javelin. Live coverage can be viewed starting at 4:15 p.m. CT on ESPN3.com. C-USA will have six individuals and one relay team competing for All-America accolades today.