Taylor Advances To NCAA Championships, Busby To Quarters
EUGENE, Ore. (May 27, 2011) - Samia Taylor qualified for the NCAA Championships and Durell Busby is one step closer to joining her as the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee track and field teams wrapped up the second day of the NCAA West Preliminaries Friday at Oregon.
Taylor broke her own school record in the triple jump to take sixth in the event and qualify for the NCAA Championships June 8-11 in Des Moines, Iowa. Busby took second in his heat of the 110m hurdles and 15th overall to qualify for Saturday's quarterfinals in the event.
Taylor qualified in dramatic fashion, qualifying for Friday's finals on her third and final jump. After fouls on each of her first two attempts, she went 41-9 3/4 to move into 10th place and qualify for the 16-person finals. With three more attempts, she leapt 42-4 1/4 on attempt No. 4 to move into the top five. By the end, she settled into the No. 6 position.
"We're really proud of Samia," head coach Pete Corfeld said. "She came through in a huge meet. A lot of credit goes to (associate head coach) Jason Francis coaching her. He is an excellent jumps coach and has done a great job working with her. It's a great day for Panthers."
The top 12 after the finals punched their tickets to Des Moines. She broke a school record in the event for the third time this season, eclipsing her distance of 42-2. Taylor is the first Panther since Nick Gretz in 2007 (discus throw) to qualify for the national finals.
Busby ran 14.02 to take second in his heat and 15th overall in the first round of the 110m hurdles. He advances to Saturday's quarterfinals for a chance to head to join Taylor at the NCAA Championships. The event is scheduled for 4:20 p.m. central time. The top 12 finishers Saturday will head to the semifinals.
"We are looking forward to tomorrow's quarterfinals," Corfeld said. "Durell looked good in his trial. He has a lot left (in the tank) to put into tomorrow's race. We're looking forward to seeing that happen."
Friday also saw the final competitions of a pair of seniors in Reigna Pierce and Erin Havener. Pierce competed with Taylor in the triple jump, taking 37th with a leap of 38-8 3/4. Havener did not register a height in the pole vault.