GREENSBORO, N.C. – Senior Diona Graves and sophomore Anna Lamb opened the Miami University women’s track and field team’s action at the NCAA East Preliminary Rounds in strong fashion Thursday night at North Carolina A&T State University’s Irwin Belk Track.
Graves (Fenton, Mo.) qualified for the 100m quarterfinals by clocking 11.57 while finishing fifth in the first heat of the first round. The top three finishers in each of the six heats automatically advance to Friday’s quarterfinal, while the next six best times also move on, meaning Graves had to wait for the next five heats to see if she earned one of the at-large spots. The Mid-American Conference 100m champion had the fifth-best at-large time after all the heats to place 23rd. Her time is the second-fastest in school history, behind only her school-record time of 11.54, which qualified her 27th for the East Prelims. Graves runs in the 100m quarterfinals Friday at 6:30 p.m. with a pair of Central Florida sprinters earning the top two spots in the 24-woman field.
Lamb (Granville, Ohio) finished 24th in the 10,000m semifinals in 35:14.11. Her time is the sixth-best in school history, four of which Lamb owns, including her school-record time of 34:35.39. Lamb, the MAC and Drake Relays 10K champion, worked her way through the crowded field to improve four places from her No. 28 seed. She was the only MAC finisher in the 48-woman race, which was won by Cornell’s Katie Kellner (33:17.39), while the top 12 finishers advanced to the NCAA Championships.
In addition to running the 100m quarterfinals on Friday, Graves will run in the 200m dash first round at 8 p.m., just 90 minutes after her quarterfinal sprint. She needs a top-12 finish in the 100m quarterfinals to make the NCAA Championships while in the 200m dash, the top three in each of the six heats and the next six best times move on to Saturday’s quarterfinal. Senior Layne Baggett also runs on Friday, competing in the third heat of the 100m hurdles first round at 5 p.m. She is seeded 15th while 24 move on to Saturday’s quarterfinals, using the same formula as the 100m and 200m dash. Junior Tori Paterra (Elizabeth, Pa.) and freshman Amelia Strickler (Bay Village, Ohio) throw the javelin and shot put, respectively, on Saturday for the RedHawks.