|Sullivan Moves on to Eugene|
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.—Vandal pole vaulter Matt Sullivan qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Thursday. He becomes the second consecutive Vandal vaulter to make the NCAA meet, following Jeremy Klas’s sixth-place finish in last year’s championships.
“Matt was awesome today in very difficult conditions which resulted in two weather delays,” director of track & field Wayne Phipps stated. “He set himself up very well by clearing bars on his first attempt. I am very proud of the way Matt competed today, he has worked hard this season with Jeremy Klas to get to this point.”
Sullivan topped out at a height of 5.26m (17-3), finishing eighth in the field of 48. Sullivan cleared all three of his heights on his first attempt and was leading going into the final height. The field got narrowed down to the 14 competitors with the bar raised to 5.36m (17-7). Sullivan, who set a career-best clearance of 5.37m at the Western Athletic Conference Championships, was unable to clear in the bar in his three attempts, just seven vaulters in all cleared the height.
Ben Ayesu-Attah ran a 46.87 to finish fourth in his 400m heat. He is one of 24 that qualified for tomorrow’s semifinal heats. The slimed down field all crossed the finish line within 1.71 seconds of each other. Andrey Levkiv’s first throw of the day in the men’s shot put proved to be his best. He topped out at a distance of 17.19m (56-4.75), finishing fourth in his flight and 25th overall.
“Ben ran a great race to qualify in the 400m and tomorrow will be an amazing competition,” Phipps said. “I have a lot of confidence in Ben’s ability to advance to Eugune.”
Tayler Feinauer started the day for the Vandals in the women’s javelin. Feinauer placed fifth in her flight and 24th overall, sending her first throw of the day 44.99m (147-7).
Kyle Rothwell will try to advance forward in the men’s hammer throw, kicking off Friday’s field events at 8 a.m. PT. Faith Eruwa (women’s triple jump) and Alycia Butterworth (women’s 3000m steeplechase) will also be in action tomorrow.