Five Rainbow Wahine qualified for track and field’s NCAA West Preliminary Round, beginning Thursday at Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus.
Western Athletic Conference champions TeRina Keenan (discus) and Sarah Saddleton (high jump) are going, along with Madara Apine (triple jump), Samantha Balentine (high jump) and Emma MacCorquodale (hammer). All five also qualified last year.
Saddleton’s jump of 5 feet, 10.75 inches, which was good for gold last week at the WAC Championship at the University of Hawaii, is ranked ninth in the region. Balentine is 15th at 5-10.
Apine and Keenan, both juniors, are making their third regional appearances. The triple jumper from Latvia ranks 25th with a mark of 41-8.5, while the thrower from New Zealand had a season-best 161-7 at the WAC Championship. MacCorquodale ranks 34th in hammer after throwing 184-11 to win bronze.
The top 48 in each event qualify for the West and East preliminaries. The top 12 at each of those sites qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Championships next month in Des Moines, Iowa.