INDIANAPOLIS - The University of North Carolina track and field teams have qualified in five different events for the 2014 National Collegiate Athletic Association Indoor Championship as announced by the NCAA Tuesday.
The last time the teams combined to qualify for five or more events was in 2009 when the teams qualified for six events and had nine individual athletes competing.
Each Tar Heel who qualified this year will be competing at the national indoor meet for the first time in his or her collegiate career
Sophomore Sarah Howard, of Dublin, Ga., qualified when she threw 55-8 ½ (16.98 meters) at the Dennis Craddock Invitational on Feb. 22. At the beginning of the season, Howard's career best was 53-0 ¾ (16.17 meters). Her throw is the tenth-best in the NCAA this year.
Lizzy Whelan, from Toronto, Ontario, and Annie LeHardy, from Roanoke, Va., both qualified for the women's mile. Both qualifying times were set at the UCS Invitational on Feb. 14 where Whelan, a sophomore, ran a converted time of 4:35.69 and LeHardy, a junior, ran a converted time of 4:35.94. Whelan is seeded seventh while LeHardy is seeded 10th.
The women's DMR team was able to qualify on Feb. 27 at the ACC Indoor Track & Field Championship. The DMR team came in third place at the championship and ran 11:11.69. The projected lineup for the DMR is Whelan, Cori Floyd, Mattie Blue, and LeHardy. Lianne Farber and Karley Rempel are listed as alternates
The men's 4x400 meter relay team punched its ticket to the national meet on Feb. 22 at the Alex Wilson Invitational. The relay team ran 3:06.93, which ranks as the second-fastest time in UNC indoor history. The team consists of RJ Alowonle, Ceo Ways, Sean Sutton and Javonte Lipsey. O'Neal Wanliss and Kwame Donyinah are the two alternates.
Isaac Presson, a senior from Asheville, N.C., wraps up the impressive group of indoor qualifiers. Presson qualified for the mile on Jan. 31 at the Hilton Garden Invitational's Camel City Elite Races. Presson took fourth in the race placing behind three professional runners. He is seeded 16th with a time of 3:59.23.
The national indoor meet will start on Friday, March 14 and conclude on Saturday, March 15. A recap of performances and results will be available on Goheels.com at the conclusion of each day.