Track and Field: Pitt hurdlers eliminated at Nationals

By Megan Boyle / Staff Writer

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Two Pitt track and field athletes’ dreams of competing for an individual national title will have to wait until next year.

Freshman Desmond Palmer and sophomore Evann Thompson, competing in the 400-meter high hurdles and hurdles, respectively, were eliminated on Wednesday from the NCAA Outdoor National Championships in Eugene, Ore., to end their season.

For each event, the top two runners in each heat advanced to the finals, followed by the next two fastest times overall.

Ranked No.14 going into competition, Palmer finished sixth within his heat with a time of 51.12 seconds. His time, coincidentally, placed him 14th overall — missing a qualifying time for finals by 0.44 seconds.

Palmer raced against fellow ACC competitor Rilwan Alowonle from the University of North Carolina. The sophomore secured a coveted spot to compete in the finals by running 50.40 seconds — ranking Alowonle fourth overall heading into the finals.

Palmer will have another chance to qualify for finals with the men’s 4×400-meter relay team.

Ranked No.10 heading into the semifinals, Thompson finished sixth in her heat, running 58.89.This time placed her 17th overall in competition — missing a qualifying time by more than a second.

Semifinals will continue today. Senior Carvin Nkanata will compete in the 200-meter dash and the men’s 4×400-meter relay team. Finals will begin Friday where Pitt’s Brycen Spratling, a senior, will run for a national title in the 400-meter dash. Spratling is seeded No. 2, behind Texas A&M’s Deon Lendore who is undefeated in this event.

You can watch the events via livestream on ESPN3.

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