TRACK and FIELD: Five More Bulldogs Qualify for NCAAs

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TRACK and FIELD: Five More Bulldogs Qualify for NCAAs

Denzel Comenentia competes in the shot put event. Georgia Track and Field (Photo by John Kelley/UGA)
Denzel Comenentia competes in the shot put event
Georgia Track and Field
(Photo by John Kelley/UGA)

After six Bulldogs qualified for the NCAA Championships on Thursday, the Georgia track and field team had five more qualify on Friday. Qualifiers included a pair of Georgia’s 100-meter dash sprinters and two Bulldog high jumpers, which highlighted the second day of the NCAA East Prelims in Lexington, KY.

The five Bulldogs that qualified finished in the top 12 in their events on Friday to advance to Nationals in Eugene, Oregon, on June 7-10. The NCAA West Prelims are running simultaneously in Austin, Texas, and will deliver the other half of the Nationals’ field.
Just as they had on Thursday, sophomore Kendal Williams and junior Cejhae Greene advanced to the next round in the 100m and have now earned their spots in Eugene in at least one event. Williams registered the quarterfinals’ third-fastest time of 10.14. Greene was sixth across the line at 10.30 and will give the Bulldogs’ a pair of qualifiers in the event.
Williams also qualified for Saturday’s quarterfinals in the 200m on Friday. The Jacksonville, Fla., native was second in his heat and ninth overall after speeding to a 20.52.
The Lady Bulldogs grabbed the top two qualifiers for the NCAA Championships in the high jump as two Georgia All-Americans cruised through the round. Juniors Tatiana Gusin and Mady Fagan both came in at 5 feet, 10 ½ inches, cleared that bar on their first try and then soared over 5-11.50 on their first attempts to be the only perfect competitors in the field.
Sophomore Denzel Comenentia provided perhaps the most suspense for the Bulldogs on day two in the shot put. Coming in with the nation’s fourth-best mark, the Amsterdam native fouled his first two attempts. Comenentia answered with a third and final toss of 62-3.25, which put him in sixth place. He also qualified for the hammer on Friday.
Also of note, senior Maurice Freeman finished 13th, one spot out of qualifying, in the 400m after clocking a 46.11. His time was just .07 seconds from the 12th and final qualifier. Freeman will race on both of the Bulldogs’ relays on Saturday.
Sophomore Jeramey Hampton, who will race on Georgia’s 4x400m relay on Saturday, took 24th in the 800m quarterfinals with a 1:54.03.
On Thursday, freshman Kate Hall (long jump), junior Keturah Orji (long jump), freshman Beatrice Llano (hammer throw), Comenentia (hammer throw), senior Alex Poursanidis (hammer throw) and freshman Kayla Smith (pole vault) punched their tickets to Eugene.
Coming into this week’s meet, decathletes Devon Williams and Karl Saluri and heptathletes Kendell Williams and Louisa Grauvogel had already scored qualifying scores in the combined events and advanced to Eugene.
Sophomore Keenon Laine starts the Bulldogs off on Saturday in the high jump at 6 p.m. Williams, Greene, Freeman and freshman Mecole HardmanClick here to hear it will be the first Georgia runners on the track in the 4x100m relay at 6:15 p.m. on the meet’s final day.

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