JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The No. 15 Virginia men’s track and field team had three Cavaliers qualify for the NCAA Championships on Saturday (May 25) as the team concluded the final day at the NCAA East Preliminary Rounds at Hodges Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla.
Redshirt senior Oghenakpobo Efekoro (Brooklyn, N.Y.) recorded his fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Championships in the shot put. With his second attempt, Efekoro recorded a mark of 18.77m (61’7″) to finish 10th in the event.
Junior Brenton Foster (Townsville, Australia) was the first Cavalier to advance to the NCAA Championships in the high jump since Herman Moore qualified for the event in 1990. Foster cleared 2.19m (7’2.25″) on his second attempt at the height to finish seventh and punch his first ticket to the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
For the third consecutive year, junior Jordan Scott (Portmore, Jamaica) qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the triple jump. The defending indoor triple jump champion reached 16.48m (54’1″) on his third attempt to place second in the event.
“Jordan (Scott) competed well today considering the buildup since the ACC meet had not gone to plan,” assistant coach Mario Wilson said. “He had a solid series which should give him confidence as we head to Austin.”
With the addition of Efekoro, Foster and Scott, the UVA men’s team qualified six Hoos for the NCAA Championships in Austin, Texas (June 5-8). Senior Hilmar Jonsson (Reykjavik, Iceland) and graduate student Brent Demarest (Charleston, S.C.) opened competition on Thursday, qualifying for the NCAA Championships in the hammer throw and 10000m run, respectively. Jonsson threw 72.17m (236’9″) to record the top mark in the hammer, while Demarest ran a career-best 28:54.69 to finish third in the 10000m. On Friday, freshman thrower Ethan Dabbs (Johnstown, Pa.) placed fourth in the javelin with a mark of 69.46m (227’11”) to punch his ticket to the national meet.
“The week was pretty much chalk, which rarely happens in advancing to the finals,” director of track and field Bryan Fetzer said. “We’ve had a great outdoor season with an amazing assembly of young men. They’re great ambassadors for UVA.
“It’s never as easy as people would think when you’re one of the favorites to advance. It’s a lot of pressure and anything can happen in competition. It does say a lot about their composure and readiness. Austin will be fun.”
The Cavaliers concluded the day with junior Lachlan Cook (Brisbane, Australia) finishing 24th in the 5000m with a time of 14:30.98 and senior Nace Plesko (Ljubljana, Slovenia) finishing 27th in the shot put with a mark of 17.67m (57’11.75″).
The NCAA Championships will be held in Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin, Texas (June 5-8).