ATLANTA — After three meets in 16 days to open Xavier University of Louisiana’s 2017 outdoor track and field season, it’s already been a great run for the Gold Nuggets’ relay teams.
Ry-Anne Riley, Tramaine Shannon, Ariane Williams and Clarke Allen concluded the Emory Invitational Saturday by finishing second in the 1,600-meter relay, and their time of 3 minutes, 53.83 seconds qualified them automatically for the NAIA National Championships.
The qualifying mark occurred one day after the XULA women — Maliya Vaughan, Carlie Calais, Taylor Price and Brianna Pace — set a school record of 9:54.69 in the 3,200 relay. On March 11, Janelle Jones, Shannon, Allen and Riley qualified for nationals in the 400 relay at the McNeese Cowboy Relays.
The NAIA’s national meet will be May 25-27 at Gulf Shores, Ala.
Also scoring for XULA were Allen, Williams, Shannon and Riley with a fifth in the 400 relay (48.27), Williams with a fourth in the 400 (57.93) and Keairez Coleman with a seventh in the men’s triple jump (13.65 meters, 44 feet, 9 1/2 inches).
Thirty-five women’s teams scored. The Gold Nuggets had 25 points and placed 13th. Of the 36 men’s teams that scored, the Gold Rush tied for 33rd place with two points.
XULA will compete Friday and Saturday in the Rice Victor Lopez Classic at Houston.