10 Matadors Qualify For West Preliminary Round of NCAA Track & Field Championships

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West Preliminary Meet Information

Cal State Northridge track & field will send a total of 10 student-athletes to the West Preliminary Round of the 2012 NCAA Track & Field Championships which open this week at the University of Texas in Austin.

The NCAA West Preliminary, which runs Thursday (May 24) through Saturday (May 26), opens Thursday at Mike A. Myers Stadium with the first round of the women's javelin at 11 a.m. local time. The final event of the preliminary is scheduled for Saturday at 9:45 p.m. with the women's 4x400 relay quarterfinal. Field events begin at 11 a.m. each of the three days. On Thursday, track events begin at 4:30 p.m., at 5 p.m. on Friday and 6 p.m. on Saturday.

The West Preliminary Championship is one of two regional competitions that will be contested. The East region will be held at the North Florida in Jacksonville, Fla. The qualifiers out of these regions will compete in the NCAA Championships held June 6-9 in Des Moines, Iowa.

The Matador men, who will send four competitors, are coming off a third-place finish at the Big West Championships while the CSUN women finished fourth. The women's squad will send a total six athletes to the West Region Championships.

NCAA WEST PRELIMINARY ROUND
The 10 Matador student-athletes will be among more than 1,700 competitors who will be vying for the 12 spots in each event that will advance to the NCAA Championships June 6-9 in Des Moines, Iowa. Northridge sent 13 competitors to the NCAA West Regional in Eugene, Ore. last season after qualifying 23 in 2010 and 24 in 2009.

MATADOR WOMEN'S PREVIEW
The Northridge women will look to seniors Jasmine Cox, Jackie Harrison and Precious Watkins who are all veterans of several West Region Championship meets. Harrison and Watkins will each be making their fourth trip to the Preliminary Round while Cox qualifies for the third time. Harrison has been a part of the Matadors' 4x400 relay all three previous seasons and will be making her second straight appearance in the 400 meters. Watkins is also making her fourth consecutive appearance as a member of the 4x400 relay squad while Cox has gone twice as a 4x400 member. Northridge's other qualifiers, Ese Ntekume, Samantha Dirks and Leshel Vines will be making their NCAA West Preliminary Round debut. Ntekume, the Big West triple jump champion, will represent the Matadors in the triple jump while both Dirks and Vines will be in the pool of available sprinters for the 4x400 relay.

MATADOR MEN'S PREVIEW
Led by double Big West sprint champion Kemar Marsden, four Matador men will make their way to Austin, Texas. Marsden captured both 100 and 200 meter events at the conference championships in Irvine two weeks ago. Hurdler Michael Woodham is the lone CSUN male with any NCAA Regional experience as the senior qualifies for the 110 meter hurdles for the fourth consecutive season. Donovan Toban (triple jump) and Tucker Weathers (shot put) are both making their inaugural appearance in the championship meet.

CAPSULES OF MATADORS ENTERED IN NCAA WEST PRELIMINARY ROUND

WOMEN - 2 Individuals, 1 Relay

Jasmine Cox
4x400 Relay

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Cox will be making her third appearance at the NCAA Preliminary Round and will be among five sprinters available in the 4x400 relay ... the Matadors come in ranked 21st in the West Region in the 4x400 relay ... CSUN's top time of 3:39.42 came at the Cal-Nevada Championships in late March ... Cox was also a member of the Matadors' 4x400 relay team that advanced to the NCAA Championships in 2010 and also ran in the regional championships in 2009.

Samantha Dirks
4x400 Relay

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Dirks is making her NCAA West Preliminaries debut as a member of the 4x400 relay squad ... the Matadors come in ranked 21st in the West Region in the 4x400 relay ... CSUN's top time of 3:39.42 came at the Cal-Nevada Championships in late March.

Jackie Harrison
400 Meters (ranked 25th) - Regional Time: 53.50
4x400 Relay

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Harrison is making her fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA West Preliminaries as a member of the 4x400 relay and qualifies for the second time in the 400 meters ... is ranked 25th in the 400 meters and will be among five Matador sprinters available for the 4x400 meter relay ... ran a lifetime-best 53.50 to capture her first Big West championship in the 400 earlier after finishing third in 2010 and 2011 ... finished 36th in the first round of the 400 meters at the 2011 NCAA West Preliminaries after running 55.88 ... the Matadors come in ranked 21st in the West Region in the 4x400 relay ... CSUN's top time of 3:39.42 came at the Cal-Nevada Championships in late March ... Harrison was also a member of the Matadors' 4x400 Regional relay team in 2009 and 2011 and the team that advanced to the NCAA Championships in 2010.

Ese Ntekume
Triple Jump (ranked 38th) - Regional Mark: 40-10.50 (2.46)

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Ntekume will be making her NCAA Preliminary Round debut in the triple jump ... the Big West champion is ranked 38th in the event heading into the Regional ... posted a career-best 40-10.50 (2.46) in winning her first conference championship ... also finished seventh in the Big West in the long jump.

Leshel Vines
4x400 Relay

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Vines is making her NCAA West Preliminaries debut as a member of the 4x400 relay squad ... the Matadors come in ranked 21st in the West Region in the 4x400 relay ... CSUN's top time of 3:39.42 came at the Cal-Nevada Championships in late March.

Precious Watkins
4x400 Relay

HOW SHE GOT HERE: Watkins is making her fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA West Preliminaries ... qualifies in the 4x400 relay for the fourth time after qualifying in the 100 meters in 2011 ... the Matadors come in ranked 21st in the West Region in the 4x400 relay ... CSUN's top time of 3:39.42 came at the Cal-Nevada Championships in late March ... the 2010 CSUN 4x400 relay team advanced to the NCAA Championships.

MEN - 4 Individuals

Kemar Marsden
200 Meters (ranked 31st) - Regional Time: 21.07

HOW HE GOT HERE: Marsden will be making his NCAA West Preliminary debut in the 200 meters ... became the third Matador sprinter in the last four years to sweep both the 100 and 200 meters at the Big West Championships ... ran a season-best of 21.07 to win the Big West 200 meter title ... his time ranks seventh on the Northridge men's all-time outdoor top-10 list.

Donovan Toban
Triple Jump (ranked 40th) - Regional Mark: 50-0.50 (15.25)

HOW HE GOT HERE: Toban is making his first trip to the NCAA West Preliminaries in the triple jump ... ranks 40th with a season-best of 50-0.50 (15.25) which he posted at the Rainbow Relays in Hawaii in March ... finished sixth in the the Big West in the triple jump after jumping 47-0.25 (14.33) in the final.

Tucker Weathers
Shot Put (ranked 40th) - Regional Mark: 57-0.25 (17.38)

HOW HE GOT HERE: Weathers is making his inaugural trip to the NCAA West Preliminary in the shot put ... comes in ranked 40th in the Regional with a top throw of 57-0.25 (17.38) ... placed fourth at the Big West Championships after achieving his top mark of the season.

Michael Woodham 
110 Meter Hurdles (ranked 38th) - Regional Time: 14.25

HOW HE GOT HERE: Woodham makes his fourth straight appearance at the NCAA West Preliminaries ... comes in ranked 38th in the 110 hurdles with a season-best of 14.25 ... finished fourth at the Big West Championships after winning his first conference crown in 2011 ... owns a lifetime-best of 14.09 which came in the 2011 Big West final ... finished 23rd (14.25) in the prelims of the 2011 NCAA Regional and was 28th (14.47) in 2010 NCAA Regional prelims ... qualified for the 2009 NCAA West Region Championships as a member of the 4x100 meter relay.

2012 NCAA DIVISION I TRACK & FIELD
WEST PRELIMINARY ROUND
EVENT SCHEDULE

THURSDAY, MAY 24
11:00 a.m. - Javelin - Men - First Round
1:00 p.m. - Long Jump - Men - First Round
1:00 p.m. - Shot Put - Women - First Round
4:30 p.m. - Javelin - Women - First Round
4:30 p.m. - 400 Hurdles - Men - First Round
5:00 p.m. - 400 Hurdles - Women - First Round
5:30 p.m. - 1,500 Meters - Men - First Round
5:30 p.m. - Long Jump - Women - First Round
5:30 p.m. - Shot Put - Men - First Round (Tucker Weathers)
6:00 p.m. - 1,500 Meters - Women - First Round
6:30 p.m. - 100 Meters - Men - First Round
6:55 p.m. - 100 Meters - Women - First Round
7:20 p.m. - 400 Meters - Men - First Round
7:45 p.m. - 400 Meters - Women - First Round (Jackie Harrison)
8:10 p.m. - 800 Meters - Men - First Round
8:35 p.m. - 800 Meters - Women - First Round
9:00 p.m. - 10,000 Meters - Women - Semifinal
9:40 p.m. - 10,000 Meters - Men - Semifinal

FRIDAY, MAY 25
11:00 a.m. - Discus - Women - First Round
1:00 p.m. - Pole Vault - Women - First Round
2:00 p.m. - Hammer - Men - First Round
5:00 p.m. - 110 Hurdles - Men - First Round (Michael Woodham)
5:00 p.m. - High Jump - Women - First Round
5:30 p.m. - 100 Hurdles - Women - First Round
6:00 p.m. - 400 Meters - Men - Quarterfinal
6:00 p.m. - Triple Jump - Men - First Round (Donovan Toban)
6:15 p.m. - 400 Meters - Women - Quarterfinal
6:30 p.m. - 100 Meters - Men - Quarterfinal
6:45 p.m. - 100 Meters - Women - Quarterfinal
7:00 p.m. - 800 Meters - Men - Quarterfinal
7:15 p.m. - 800 Meters - Women - Quarterfinal
7:30 p.m. - 400 Hurdles - Men - Quarterfinal
7:45 p.m. - 400 Hurdles - Women - Quarterfinal
8:00 p.m. - 200 Meters - Men - First Round (Kemar Marsden)
8:25 p.m. - 200 Meters - Women - First Round
8:50 p.m. - 3,000 Steeplechase - Men - Quarterfinal
9:30 p.m. - 3,000 Steeplechase - Women - Quarterfinal

SATURDAY, MAY 26
11:00 a.m. - Discus - Men - First Round
1:00 p.m. - Pole Vault - Men - First Round
2:00 p.m. - Hammer - Women - First Round
5:00 p.m. - High Jump - Men - First Round
6:00 p.m. - 4x100 Relay - Men - Quarterfinal
6:15 p.m. - 4x100 Relay - Women - Quarterfinal
6:30 p.m. - 1,500 Meters - Men - Quarterfinal
6:30 p.m. - Triple Jump - Women - First Round (Ese Ntekume)
6:45 p.m. - 1,500 Meters - Women - Quarterfinal
7:05 p.m. - 110 Hurdles - Men - Quarterfinal
7:20 p.m. - 100 Hurdles - Women - Quarterfinal
7:35 p.m. - 200 Meters - Men - Quarterfinal
7:50 p.m. - 200 Meters - Women - Quarterfinal
8:05 p.m. - 5,000 Meters - Men - Semifinal
8:45 p.m. - 5,000 Meters - Women - Semifinal
9:25 p.m. - 4x400 Relay - Men - Quarterfnal
9:45 p.m. - 4x400 Relay - Women - Quarterfinal (Cox, Dirks, Harrison, Vines, Watkins)

- GO MATADORS -