Today will be a busy day for the Warriors as six Stanislaus athletes are competing in seven NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships finals events with Courtney Anderson doubling in the 1500- and 5000-meter runs. Anderson has the top seed time in the 1500-meter run as the Warriors' best chance at an individual championship. Both Josh Uikilifi and Deon Pinder will also be back for their second performance of the weekend.
In his first ever appearance at the NCAA Championships, sophomore Pinder exceeded expectations with his performance in the men's long jump. On Thursday, Pinder's top mark on the day was 7.20 meters, or 23 feet, 7 1/2 inches. He reached that on his second attempt of flight one and did not advance to the finals. He finished 14th overall after entering the event as the 20th rank — the last student-athlete to make the competition list. The winning mark was 8.08 meters (26-6 1/4) turned in by Carlton Lavong of Adams State. Chico State's J Patrick Smith was eighth (7.41m)
Pinder will compete in the triple jump today. The CCAA champion enters as the sixth best in the field with a season best of 15.40 meters.
Uikilifi will compete in the shot put today, an event he posted an All-American finish a year ago in sixth place. He won the CCAA championship and holds the school record in the shotput.
In men's hammer throw, Uikilifi posted a ninth place finish with a 58.80-meter throw (192 feet, 11 inches), just missing out on reaching the top-eight podium for the All-American award. Uikilifi was not able to better his second throw of the day during the final round. The winner was Justin Welch of Findlay (69.84m).
Cal State Stanislaus' Abraham Alvarado and Marina Vorderbruegge both put in valiant efforts in the preliminary heats of the 800-meter run on Friday, however, against a strong field, they did not advance to today's championship finals for a chance to reach the podium.
Alvarado, just a freshman appearing in his first national championship meet, clocked 1:54.55 to finish seventh in his heat to place 17th overall. His heat included defending national champion Drew Windle of Ashland, who ended up eighth overall (out of the nine qualifying spots), in a time of 1:51.36. Even Kellin Loch of Central Missouri, who placed third last year, failed to advance placing 15th overall on the day.
Last year's winning time in Pueblo, Colo., was 1:48.52. The fastest qualifer on Friday was Luis Romero of Texas A&M Commerce in 1:50.42.
In the women's 800-meter run, Vorderbruegge turned in a late push to come in fifth in her heat. Vorderbruegge's time was 2:10.83 (16th overall) while the 9th and final qualifer's time was 2:09.05.
Vorderbruegge, who qualified eighth in the 1500-meter run on Thursday, made a run in the middle of the race while the front pack jockey for position before trailing to the back. In the final 200-meters, she went from last with a sprint to the finish to end up fifth in her heat. The top time on the day was 2:07.52 turned in by Seattle Pacific's McKayla Fricker, a time that would have won the championship a year ago (2:08.18).