Redshirt senior Anna Keefer placed ninth in the women’s long jump in the NCAA East Preliminary Round to punch her ticket to Oregon. She recorded a distance of 20-4.5, a mark off of her personal-best 21-6. Keefer is also coming off of a second-place finish in the women’s long jump final at this year’s ACC Outdoor Championships with a distance of 6.40 meters.
At the NCAA East Preliminary Round, Keefer also competed in the 200 meters, setting a school record with a time of 22.83. However, she failed to qualify after finishing in 15th place.
Madison Wiltrout, women’s javelin throw
Graduate Madison Wiltrout won the women’s javelin throw event on the second day of competition at the NCAA East Preliminary Round with a throw of 182-11 (55.75m).
Wiltrout is coming into the championship hot, coming off of an ACC record-breaking performance with her throw of 196-11 (60.03m) at the ACC Outdoor Championships. Her performance not only broke the conference record for women’s javelin, but also broke the facility, meet and school records.
Jesse Hunt, men’s 1,500 meters
Graduate runner Jesse Hunt placed seventh overall at the NCAA East Preliminary Round, with a time of 3:40.31, to advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Hunt barely made the cut, as he was the last person selected to advance out of the two heats.
At last year’s championship, Hunt placed 21st and was named an All-American honorable mention. This week marks Hunt’s second-ever appearance at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
Alex Ostburg, men’s 5,000 meters
Graduate Alex Ostburg, a transfer from Stanford, finished with a time of 13:44.42 in the men’s 5,000 meters heat at the NCAA East Preliminary Round. His time was good for fourth in his heat and 11th overall. He was just under nine seconds away from his personal-best time of 13:35.67.
Ostburg, a seven-time All-American, is no stranger to the NCAA Championships. During his time at Stanford, Ostburg attended the championships multiple times as a cross country runner.
Sasha Neglia, women’s steeplechase
Sophomore Sasha Neglia was the last Tar Heel to advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships from the preliminary competition.
At the NCAA East Preliminary Round, she placed ninth in the women’s steeplechase after running a personal-best time of 9:59.80. Despite placing fourth in her heat, her time alone was good enough to advance her to the championships.
Neglia, like Ostburg, has cross country experience at the championship level as a two-time cross country NCAA Championship competitor. She’s also trending in the right direction, as the sophomore improved upon her recent ACC Outdoor Championships steeplechase time of 10:03.06 by roughly three seconds.
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Shelby Swanson is the 2023-24 sports editor at The Daily Tar Heel. She has previously served as an assistant sports editor and senior writer. Shelby is a junior pursuing a double major in media and journalism and Hispanic literatures and cultures.