The Georgia track and field teams traveled to Eugene, Ore., on Sunday in anticipation for the coming NCAA Outdoor Championships, which run from Wednesday through Saturday.
Where Are They Ranked: The sixth-ranked Bulldog men and 11th-ranked Georgia women, according to the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) poll, arrive on the University of Oregon campus after having 10 individual qualifiers and one relay qualifier at the NCAA East Prelims in Jacksonville, Fla., two weeks ago.
In addition, four of UGA’s multi-event student-athletes qualified automatically for Nationals with their regular season scores.
When Do The Bulldogs Compete: The Bulldogs have a trio of competitors in the NCAA Outdoor Championships first event, the decathlon’s 100-meter dash, at 3:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday followed by the dec’s long jump, shot put, high jump and 400m. Georgia starts in the open events with a pair in the men’s hammer throw at 5 p.m. on the first day.
Wednesday and Friday are slated for the men’s open events while the women’s open events will be run on Thursday and Saturday. Two Lady Bulldogs start the meet for the team in the long jump on Thursday at 9 p.m.
This meet, which is held at the same Hayward Field location where the U.S. Olympic Trials will be July 1-10, caps a Bulldog year that started with their indoor opener in early December.
Kyprianou’s Comments: “We have finally arrived at our most important time of the year – the NCAA finals,” said first-year Bulldog head coach Petros Kyprianou, whose teams are the only Bulldog squads still alive in the postseason for the 2015-16 school year. “Our teams are extremely excited and eager to compete at the site of the Olympic Trials before a crowd that is a very well educated track audience. Our crew is ready to put on a show for themselves, their families and our everyone watching. We have student-athletes ranked very highly in their events and expectations are high. And we are prepared and ready to enjoy the time.
“If we said we were not excited to compete in a meet like this, it would be a lie. The quality of the student-athletes on this team is the best in the NCAA with two ladies having collegiate records, multiple NCAA crowns, lots of experience and most importantly our recent success at NCAA indoors. We expect them to lead our teams by example and urge the younger ones to step up and score. Our teams are prepared and need to execute as we are remaining loyal to our vision. Go Dawgs!”
What Bulldogs Advanced: Seventeen Bulldogs will be competing in nine different events when the meet’s first day arrives. Senior Maicel Uibo, junior Devon Williams, sophomore Karl Saluri (decathlon), senior Ashinia Miller (shot put), freshman Denzel Comenentia (shot put, hammer throw), junior Alex Poursanidis (hammer throw), junior Maurice Freeman, junior Reggie Glover, freshman Jeramey Hampton, junior Ayrian Evans, sophomore Raytez Jenkins (4×400-meter relay) and senior Christian Harrison (800m) will represent the Bulldog men.
Junior Kendell Williams (heptathlon), sophomore Keturah Orji (triple jump, long jump), senior Chanice Porter (long jump), sophomore Mady Fagan (high jump) and freshman Aliyah Johnson (triple jump) will be lining up for the Red and Black on the women’s side.
A majority of the Bulldogs qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships by finishing in the top 12 in their respective events at the East Prelims. The East Prelims qualifiers will now meet the West Prelims qualifiers. Those performances for Georgia included Orji sweeping the long and triple jump as the Mount Olive, N.J., native set a collegiate record in the triple with an opening attempt of 46 feet, 10 ¾ inches.
Orji was recently named the USTFCCCA South Region Women’s Field Athlete of the Year while Uibo won the men’s honor. Orji was also this year’s Southeastern Conference Scholar-Athlete and Field Athlete of the Year.