FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — North Texas concluded Day 3 at the NCAA West Preliminary meet in Fayetteville, Ark., on Saturday with two athletes set to move on to the national finals.
Clinton Collins and Chastity Stewart both advanced to the meet that will begin June 11 in Eugene, Ore.
“Clinton has the story of the year,” UNT coach Carl Sheffield said. “It’s been a long time coming for him to reach the championship meet. Having two coaches throughout his career, it finally clicked as a senior and is a great accomplishment.”
Collins will compete in the semifinals of the men’s 400 meters after finishing seventh in Friday’s quarterfinal round.
Stewart placed ninth in the 400-meter hurdles in a record time of 57.74 seconds, ensuring her a spot at the NCAA championships. She holds the top five fastest times in UNT history.
“Chastity came back from an injury in the middle of the season and was able to fight through it and qualify.” Sheffield said. “Her two-second improvement sent her to the next level of competition and it was incredible to watch.”
Elisha Peters closed out her freshman season with a 25-place finish in the women’s high jump with her mark of 1.72 meters.
“To have a freshman qualify for the West prelims gives a great experience,” Sheffield said. “You may hear about how high the level of competition is, but gaining that experience is key to continue her career.”
Stewart placed 23rd in the 100 hurdles on Saturday in a time of 13.82.
UNT’s 4x400m relay team of Collins, Collin Heard, Connor Bey and Anthony Hamilton finished 18th in 3 minutes, 9.57 seconds.
“We changed the order to give our all and compete with the best in the country,” Sheffield said. “With the change we were able to post a season best in the four-by-four.”
For the second year the Mean Green will compete at Hayward Field at the University of Oregon in Eugene.
“This is another milestone for our program,” Sheffield said. “Advancing 12 athletes to the West prelims after a difficult conference championship is great for our development. We will have eight returning athletes next fall, and it will give our team more confidence and experience after competing at such an elite level.”