The 2017 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships are set to begin today in Eugene, Oregon and last through June 10th, concluding this Saturday. Both the Georgia men’s and women’s track and field teams are represented by 18 members who qualified for this year’s nationals.
Who Qualified For The Dawgs?:
Sixteen Georgia team members along with the men’s 4×100-meter and 4x400m relays will represent the Red and Black at the NCAA meet. For the women, senior Kendell Williams (heptathlon), juniors Mady Fagan (high jump), Tatiana Gusin (high jump), Keturah Orji (triple/long jumps), sophomore Aliyah Johnson (triple jump) and freshmen Kayla Smith (pole vault), Kate Hall (long jump), Beatrice Llano (hammer) and Louisa Grauvogel (heptathlon) will try for the squad’s fourth top-five performance in a row at the meet.
On the men’s side, seniors Alex Poursanidis (hammer), Devon Williams (decathlon), Ayrian Evans (relay leg), Maurice Freeman (relay leg), Reggie Glover (relay leg), juniors Cejhae Greene (100m, relay leg), Gabe Blackman (relay leg), Karl Saluri (decathlon), sophomores Kendal Williams (100m, 200m, relay leg), Keenon Laine (high jump), Denzel Comenentia (shot put, hammer), Jeramey Hampton (relay leg) and freshman Mecole HardmanClick here to hear it (relay leg) will be in search of the team’s second top-10 finish since 2014.
Georgia combined for their top outdoor national finish in school history in 2014 as the women finished fifth and the men took sixth.
“We have arrived at the finale of the season, the most important four days,” said Bulldog head coach Petros Kyprianou, who was recently named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) South Region Women’s Head Coach of the Year. “We have tried to maintain laser focus training for this meet and attempted to keep our team as healthy and as happy as possible. It’s time now to continue the tradition that Georgia and the SEC has established at this meet over the last five years and beyond. We anticipate challenges from every direction and from the country’s top competition. But I have faith that the Dawgs will answer the bell and perform to their potential out here in Oregon.”
Honors Begin To Roll In:
In addition to Kyprianou’s accolade, Orji was named the South Region Women’s Field Athlete of the Year for the second consecutive time while Devon Williams was honored as the Men’s Field Athlete of the Year for the first time in his career.
When Does The NCAA Meet Crank Up?:
Devon Williams and Saluri will start the action in the decathlon at 3:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday, June 7. They will start with the 100m and plan on completing the first five events on day one. Comenentia and Poursanidis will begin the open events for Georgia in the men’s hammer at 5 p.m. on day one. The men’s 4x100m semifinal at 7:32 p.m. on the first day will be the Bulldogs’ opening event on the track.
Georgia’s Early Qualifiers:
All but four of the Bulldogs qualified for Nationals at the NCAA East Prelims in Lexington, Ky., on May 25-27. Decathletes Devon Williams and Saluri along with heptathletes Kendell Williams and Grauvogel punched their ticket before Prelims in the combined events. Devon Williams sits second in the national rankings with 8,345 points behind collegiate record holder Lindon Victor (8,539) of Texas A&M. Saluri is ranked fifth nationally at 7,948 points.
Kendell Williams, the younger sister of Devon, has tallied the country’s best heptathlon score (6,354) this season and is the defending NCAA champion in the event. Grauvogel sits 18th on the national list at 5,616.
Where To Catch The Meet:
The NCAA Championships will be streamed live for portions of the meet all four days, and depending on the day and time, you will be able to catch the competition on
ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, or WatchESPN.
For more information on this year’s NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, go to http://www.ncaa.com/championships/trackfield-outdoor/d1.
You can also follow the live results and keep ‘track’ of your Georgia Bulldogs, CLICK HERE.