Stephenson Qualifies for Third-Straight NCAA Outdoor Championship on Day 1 of NCAA East Preliminary

Stephenson Qualifies for Third-Straight NCAA Outdoor Championship on Day 1 of NCAA East Preliminary

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Michigan State graduate student Trevor Stephenson earned his third-straight trip to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in the pole vault Wednesday evening, highlighting several notable performances from the MSU men on the first day of the NCAA East Preliminary Round in Jacksonville, Florida. 

Stephenson used a second-attempt clearance at 5.40m to secure his spot at next month’s national championship in Austin, Texas, marking his fifth overall qualification to an NCAA Championship. Stephenson finished fourth for First-Team All-America honors at the NCAA Indoor Championships in March.  

Stephenson is the third Spartan to punch a ticket to the national championship this season following seniors Heath Baldwin and Ryan Talbot in the decathlon. 

A pair of Spartans moved on to their respective Friday quarterfinals. Graduate student John Petruno finished fifth in his heat of the 1500m in a time of 3:45.08, running the fastest non-autoqualifying time to secure his spot in Friday’s quarterfinal at 5:15 p.m. Petruno will look to qualify for his second-straight NCAA Outdoor Championship in Friday’s quarterfinals. 

Senior Kendel Hammock set a personal best for the third-straight race in the first round of the 400m hurdles, running 51.27 for one of six non-autoqualifying spots. Hammock, making his first appearance at the NCAA East Preliminary, will look to qualify for his first NCAA Championships in Friday’s final at 7:25 p.m. 

Sophomore Noah Sage concluded his season in Wednesday’s 400m first round, running 47.03 for 26th place overall in the event. 

In the final event of the evening, graduate student CarLee Stimpfel narrowly missed a spot in the national championship with a 13th-place finish in the 10,000m, running 29:21.09 to wrap up his first season in the Green & White. 

Junior Joshua DeVries kicked off the week for the Spartans Wednesday morning in the men’s hammer throw. DeVries finished in 21st place with a throw of 62.94m, his best mark being recorded on his first attempt. Also in the ring, freshman Colby Morlock capped off a stellar true-freshman season with a 26th-place finish in the shot put, using a first-round 18.03m throw, recording his second-career mark over 18 meters. 

Michigan State will be back in action on Thursday, May 25 for the second day of the NCAA…

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