Gustavus Adolphus senior Kourtney Joyce (Wadena, Minn.) finished ninth in the 3000-meter steeplechase Friday, while junior Tanner Miest (New London, Minn.) and senior Ashley Cronen (Kandiyohi, Minn.) advanced to Saturday finals in the 110-meter hurdles and 800-meter run, respectively, at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships being held this weekend at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois.
This is the second consecutive ninth place finish for Joyce in the steeplechase at the national meet, missing All-America honors by one place on the podium. Last year, Joyce was nipped at the line for eighth by Dickinson College’s Caitlin Bradley. This year, Joyce finished four places ahead of Bradley but was still out of the points. Joyce posted a time of 10:53.47, a little over four seconds behind Bates College junior Kathryn Moore, who finished eighth. Concordia (Wis.) senior Amanda Kuca captured the 2006 title with a time of 10:15.72.
Cronen advanced to Saturday’s 800-meter run final with a time of 2:12.41, winning her qualifying heat. Even though Cronen posted the sixth-best qualifying time, she draws the third-best starting spot in the final by virtue of her win in the prelims. Cronen will start in lane four, while top qualifier Amber Druien of North Central (2:11.62) will go off in lane five. Wartburg sophomre Heidi Porter, who qualified second, starts in lane six on the nine-lane Benedictine track.
Miest qualfied eighth for Saturday’s nine-person 110-meter hurdle final by posting a time of 14.80 seconds in his qualifying heat, in which he finished third. Miest will come out of the blocks in Saturday’s final in lane nine. Wisconsin-LaCrosse junior Marcus Walgrave posted the top qualifying time of 14.29 and will start in lane five in the final.
First-year Lisa Brown (Lake Crystal, Minn.) will kickoff Saturday’s action when she competes in the women’s javelin final which is schedule to begin at 11:00 a.m. Miest returns to the track for the 110-meter hurdle final, scheduled for 1:55 p.m., while Cronen closes out Gustavus competition at the 2006 NCAA Championships with the 800-meter final at 3:00 p.m.
The 2006 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships conclude tomorrow.