A school record eight Youngstown State men's track and field athletes have advanced to compete at the NCAA East Preliminary Round which will be held May 23-25 in Jacksonville, Fla. The event is being hosted by North Florida and Jacksonville Sports Authority at Hodges Stadium.
Competing for the Penguins are Ryan Sullivan (10,000m), Chad Zallow (110m Hurdles), Collin Harden (400m Hurdles), Wyatt Lefker (pole vault), Dom Westbay (Shot Put), Zach Gehm (Discus), Jake Wilson (Javelin) and Noah Drudy (Javelin).
Zallow is the top ranked qualifier for YSU ranking 12th in the 110m hurdles and Harden is 15th in the 400m hurdles. Wilson ranks 22nd while Drudy is 28th in the javelin, Gehm is 31st in the discus, Westbay is 35th in the shot put, Sullivan is 37th in the 10,000m and Lefker is 47th in the pole vault.
Zallow is a four-time NCAA prelims qualifier while Harden is now a three-time competitor at the prelims. The six other Penguins are each first-time qualifiers.
Zallow, who has been a second-team Outdoor All-American the past two years in the 110m hurdles, enters the prelims with a top time of 13.70 seconds which he recorded at the Clyde Littfield Texas Relays back on March 30. Harden's quickest time in the 400m hurdles came at the Horizon League Outdoor Championships on May 5 when finished in 51.01 seconds. Sullivan's top performance in the 10,000m came at the NC State Raleigh Relays when clocked a time of 29:38.15 on March 29.
Wilson and Drudy's furthest throws in the javelin were recorded at the Horizon League Outdoor Championships on May 3. Wilson's top throw was 66.98m while Drudy recorded a mark of 65.86m. In the discus, Gehm's school-record throw of 54.17m came on April 20 at the Ashland Alumni Open. Westbay's top toss in the shot put of 17.75m came on April 27 at the Jesse Owens Relays. Lefker's school-record mark in the pole vault is 5.01m which he recorded on May 10 at the Harrison Dillard Twilight.
Last year, Zallow won both of his heats in the 110m hurdles to advance to the NCAA Championships while ultimately finishing 15th. Harden placed fourth in his heat of the 400m hurdles with a time of 52.35 seconds while finishing 30th overall in the event.
The 400m hurdles are set for Thursday, May 23 at 5 p.m. and Friday, May 24 at 7:15 p.m. The 10,000m semifinal is at 9:40 p.m. on May 23. The 110m hurdles are set for May 24 at 5:00 p.m. and May 25 at 7:20 p.m.
The pole vault is at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 23. The javelin is Friday, May 24 at 12:00 p.m. while the discus gets underway at 4:00 p.m. The shot put is Saturday, May 25 at 2:45 p.m.