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Furman Distance Athletes To Compete At NCAA East Preliminaries Beginning Thursday

Furman Distance Athletes To Compete At NCAA East Preliminaries Beginning Thursday

NOTE UPDATED TIMES BELOW.  Click HERE for full updated schedule.

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Eleven Furman distance athletes in six events, the most in program history, will compete at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships East Preliminaries, which will be hosted by the University of South Florida and the Tampa Bay Sports Commission, May 24-26, in Tampa, Fla.  The Paladins rank second among all Division I schools for most athletes qualified in distance events.

Senior Troy Reeder will represent the Paladins in the 3,000m Steeplechase, and junior Aaron Templeton and sophomore Mason Coppi will run in the 5,000m.  Senior Josh Brickell and junior Frank Lara will compete in the men's 10,000m, and sophomore Jake Ogden has qualified in the 1,500m.

On the women's side, senior Allie Buchalski and sophomore Savannah Carnahan will run in the 5,000m, and sophomores Emma Grace Hurley and Gabrielle Jennings, along with rookie Kristlin Gear will compete in the 3,000m Steeplechase.

"We are very excited to be bringing a record number of runners to the NCAA first round in Tampa," said Furman head coach Robert Gary.  "We are tied for the second most in the distance events in the East, which is a lofty goal which we challenged the team to at the beginning of the year.  We hope to advance several to Eugene!"

Reeder, a native of Fishers, Ind., will run in the 3,000m Steeplechase for the third-consecutive year, after earning All-American accolades the past two seasons.  He holds the ninth-best in the East in the event, 8:51.32, which he posted at the Payton Jordan Invitational on May 3.  His personal-best time of 8:36.51, which he set at the NCAAs in 2016, is a Furman record.  

Templeton, a native of Knoxville, Tenn., notched a time of 14:03.74, the 27th best time in the East, in the 5,000m at the Virginia Challenge to qualify for the prelims, while Coppi, who hails from Dana Point, Calif., qualified for the event after crossing the line in 14:10.31, which ranks 40th, at the Raleigh Relays.  He finished 22nd in the event at last year's NCAA East prelims. 

In the 10,000m, Lara, a native of Houston, Texas, clocked in with the 23rd best time in the East, 29:35.12, at the Raleigh Relays to qualify, while Brickell, who hails from Suwanee, Ga., is ranked 28th with a time of 29:39.82, which he posted at the Virginia Challenge.  Lara earned All-American honorable mention accolades after placing 19th in the event at the NCAA Championships last season, and Brickell placed 15th at the NCAA East Preliminaries in the event in 2017.  

Ogden, a native of Dana Point, Calif., notched his qualifying time of 3:45.82 in the 1,500m at the Virginia Challenge.  He ranks 48th in the East in the event.

Buchalski, who hails from Johns Creek, Ga., ranks second in the East with a time of 15:39.17 in the 5,000m, which she recorded at the Virginia Challenge.  She finished sixth in the event at last year's NCAA Championships, earning an All-American citation.  Carnahan, who came to Furman from Cumming, Ga., is ranked seventh in the event with a time of 15:49.89 at the Raleigh Relays, after finishing 20th in the event at last year's NCAA East Preliminaries.  

In the 3,000m Steeplechase, all three Paladins rank among the top 19.  Hurley, a native of Roswell, Ga., set a new Paladin record with a time of 10:06.35 at the Raleigh Relays, the ninth-best time in the East this season.  Jennings, who hails from Sidell, La., posted a time of 10:10.41 at the Payton Jordan Invitational, the 16th-best time in the East in 2018.  She placed 18th in the event at last year's NCAA East Preliminaries.  Gear, a native of Fort Meyers, Fla., ranks 19th in the East with a time of 10:12.72, which she set at the Raleigh Relays.  

The first round of the men's 1,500m will be held on Thursday, May 24, at 1:30 p.m., with the quarterfinals slated for 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 26.  The semifinals of the men's 10,000m will be held on Thursday at 9 p.m.  The 3,000m Steeplechase quarterfinals are scheduled for Friday.  The men's race will commence at 8 p.m., followed by the women at 8:40 p.m.  The men's 5,000m semifinal will begin at 8:05 p.m. on Saturday, followed by the women's race at 8:45 p.m.

The top 12 finishers in each event will advance to the NCAA Championships, which will be held in Eugene, Ore., June 6-9.

Julie Paré, Furman Sports Information