AUSTIN, Texas – The Oral Roberts University Track and Field team advanced two of three athletes, including punching one ticket to Eugene, Ore., on the first day of the NCAA West Preliminary Rounds, hosted by the University of Texas.
On his third and final jump of the prelims, Morrie Turner posted a lifetime best in the long jump, getting out 25-0.50 (7.63m) to qualify for the finals. That jump held up in the next round and Turner tied for 10th overall with Malcolm Pennix of Missouri, becoming one of the 12 competitors to earn a trip to the NCAA Championships in Eugene.
The second Golden Eagle to compete on Thursday, Jeffery Gibson made a statement to the nation as he blew away his heat and posted the fastest overall qualifying time. Gibson’s time of 50.01 gives him the preferred lane in the quarterfinals on Friday at 7:45 p.m.
The final runner for ORU on Thursday nearly made it a clean sweep as freshman Madison Reynolds took to the track for the 400m dash. Reynolds finished fourth in her heat and had to await the results of the other heats to see if she would make the top 24 and advance to the quarterfinals. When the final results came in, Reynolds’ time of 54.19 was 0.07 seconds short as she finished 25th overall.
In addition to Gibson’s quarterfinal, Lauren McFarland will compete in the pole vault beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday. Pole vaulters Jack Whitt and Dustin Gehrke, as well as triple jumper Tim Jones, will compete on Saturday from Mike A. Myers Stadium.