Outdoor Track: Gonzales Flies Into NCAA Midwest Regional Finals
LINCOLN, Neb. -- Sophomore Matt Gonzales clocked a career-best time of 3:47.75 on Friday afternoon to advance to the finals of the men's 1,500-meter run at the NCAA Midwest Regional Championships. Ranked 22nd in the region entering the meet, Gonzales scorched the field with the fastest time of the day. The Santa Fe, N.M. native, who is already an automatic qualifier in the 10,000 meters, will add the 1,500 to his national championship events if he can finish in the top-five today at Ed Weir Stadium.
In other Midwest Regional action, the men's 4x100-meter relay team of junior Chris Garofola, senior David Lloyd, freshman RaShawn Jackson and junior Ahmed Raji ran a season-best for the second-straight meet, but just missed the qualifying cut. Ranked 27th entering the meet, the foursome blazed to a time of 40.47, finishing ninth, just 0.14 seconds behind the eighth and final finalist.
Sophomore Veronica Gonzales also defied the rankings, finishing 15th in the women's javelin, 13 spots higher than her seeding of 28th. The Carlsbad, N.M. native was five feet under her career-best however, recording a top throw of 136-01.
Fellow Carlsbad native Amanda Barnes did not fare as well, finishing 13th in the shot put with a toss of 45-11.75. Barnes scratched on her first attempt before recording her top mark on her third and final throw. The sophomore captured the Mountain West Conference title on May 17 with a career-best mark of 48-06.25.
Back on the track, Lloyd finished 20th in the 100-meter prelims with a time of 10.67, 0.21 seconds slower than his qualifying time two weeks ago at the MWC Championships in Albuquerque. The Kingston, Jamaica native suffered an unfortunate disqualification in the 400-meter hurdles later in the day when he stepped out of his lane. Meanwhile, Raji placed 14th in the 200-meter prelims with a time of 21.14. The MWC runner-up in the event clocked a career-best qualifying time of 20.95 on May 17 in Albuquerque.
Junior Jason Barkermeyer wrapped up the day's competition by placing 32nd in the discus. Barkermeyer recorded his top mark of 158-02 on his first attempt, but then scratched on his final two throws.
Barkermeyer will get another crack at the regional field when he competes in the shot put this afternoon. Other Lobos in action today include: junior Jimmy Minner (javelin), freshman Chris Ashcraft (pole vault), junior Erin Johnson (high jump), Matt Gonzales (1,500 finals) and the men's 4x400m relay team of Lloyd, Garofola, Raji and senior Nick Lott.
Compete meet results can be found at www.huskers.com!