GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Junior Frank Lara finished 11th in the semifinals of the 10,000m to punch his ticket to the NCAA Championships, while sophomore Ryan Adams placed tenth in the first round of the men's 1,500m to advance to Saturday's quarterfinals Thursday in the opening day of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships East Preliminaries, which are being hosted by the University of Kentucky, in Louisville, Ky.
Lara, who hails from Houston, Texas, ran at the front of the pack throughout the 10,000m, posting a time of 30:04.28 to advance to the finals, which will be held on June 7 in Eugene, Ore. Junior Josh Brickell finished 16th, just four spots shy of the cut, with a time of 30:24.20, while junior Tanner Hinkle, who holds the Paladin record of 29:15.99 in the event, crossed the line in 30:42.99 to take 23rd place.
Adams, who hails from Hudson, Ohio, finished second in his heat of the 1,500m with a time of 3:50.37 to qualify automatically for the quarterfinal round, which is slated for 6:45 p.m. on Saturday. He entered the event ranked 15th in the East with a top time of 3:42.90 this season. The Paladin record holder with a time of 3:42.25, he notched his qualifying time at the Raleigh Relays in March.
On Friday, the Paladins will have two athletes competing in the quarterfinals of the 3,000m Steeplechase. The women's race will commence at 8:20 p.m., followed by the men at 9 p.m.
Freshman Gabrielle Jennings, who came to Furman from Sidell, La., posted a time of 10:25.02 in the event at the Raleigh Relays to qualify. Her time currently ranks 41st in the East. Senior Troy Reeder, a native of Fishers, Ind., holds the top time in the East in the event on the men's side. He posted a time of 8:40.57 at the Stanford Invitational in March to qualify for the prelims, and he holds the Furman record of 8:36.51 in the event.
The meet will conclude on Saturday, with Furman also competing in the 5,000m. The women's 5,000m semifinal will begin at 8:05 p.m. on Saturday, followed by the men's race at 8:45 p.m.
On the women's side, junior Allie Buchalski and freshman Savannah Carnahan will represent the Paladins. Buchalski, who hails from Johns Creek, Ga., leads the East with a time of 15:35.55 in the 5,000m, a new Paladin record which she set in March at the Raleigh Relays. Carnahan, a native of Cumming, Ga., ranks 43rd in the East with a time of 16:21.18, which she posted at the Virginia Challenge in April.
A native of Dana Point, Calif., freshman Mason Coppi notched a time of 14:10. 60 in the 5,000m at the Virginia Challenge to qualify for the prelims.
The top 12 finishers in each event will advance to the NCAA Championships, which will be held in Eugene, Ore., June 7-10.
Julie Paré, Furman Sports Information