INDIANAPOLIS – With conference meets in the books, next on the slate for collegiate track & field athletes will be qualifying rounds for the NCAA National Championships. The NCAA East Regional will take place May 25-27 on the campus of the University of Kentucky.
Seven women and two men will compete for the Green Wave in Lexington, matching last year’s total of nine athletes slated to travel to the regional meet.
On the women’s side, Tulane will see action from Jessica Duckett in both the 100m hurdles and 400m hurdles, while Alyssa Applebee, Mary Carson Pitts and Rebekah Markel will compete in the pole vault. The Green Wave will also send a trio of throwers, with Taylor Potts in the shot put and Daliadiz Ortiz and Laruschka Joubert in the javelin.
Tulane will also be represented in the men’s competition by Emmanuel Rotich in the 3,000m steeplechase and 5,000m as well as Raymond Kibet in the 400m dash.
With Kibet and Rotich in the qualifying number, 2017 marks the first time Tulane will send two men to regional competition since the 2012 season, with Rotich becoming the first male in school history to compete in more than one event.
Four Green Wave athletes rank within the top ten of their respective events, with Ortiz coming in at 5th in the javelin, Applebee sitting at 6th in the pole vault and Kibet and Rotich each ranking tenth in the 400m dash and 3,000m steeplechase, respectively. The top twelve finishers in each event will qualify for the NCAA National Championships, which will take place June 8-10 in Eugene, Oregon.
Following her sweep of the hurdling events at last weekend’s American Athletic Conference Outdoor Championships, Duckett will return to regional competition for the second consecutive year, as she ranks 21st and 13th in the 100m hurdles and 400m hurdles, respectively. She currently holds the school record in the 100m hurdles on a quick time of 13.37 and broke a conference meet record last weekend in the 400m hurdles, finishing in just 57.82.
In the pole vault, Applebee will be joined by teammates Mary Carson Pitts and Rebekah Markel, who both took home medals at last weekend’s American Athletic Conference Championships. With a jump of 4.17m, Pitts enters her third NCAA East Regional at the No. 13 spot in her event, followed by Markel at No. 35 on her mark of 4.04m.
As a freshman, Kibet already holds the school record in the 400m dash, taking home a gold medal after setting a conference meet record last weekend in Houston. Rotich was also a gold-medal finisher in the 3,000m steeplechase at conference.
Ortiz will make her third appearance at a regional meet following a school-record breaking performance in Houston that earned her a silver medal in the javelin.
Potts and Joubert will round out the Green Wave’s regional field, Potts being the current school record holder in the shot put on a mark of 15.81m. Joubert ranks sixth-all time at Tulane in the javelin.
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