One day after Elexis Guster and Mitch Wolff clinched individual invites to the NCAA Finals June 10-13, teammates Brittany Brown, Aaron Mallet, and Babatunde Amosu earned the right to join them.
The three Hawks took advantage of their opportunities in Saturday’s NCAA West Regional action in Austin, Texas for a shot to compete at nationals in Eugene, Oregon in two weeks.
Mallet, who became an indoor All-American on March 14, ran the 110-meter high hurdles in 13.64 seconds. Only Arkansas sophomore Omar McLeod fared better.
“I didn’t have to do anything spectacular,” Mallet said in a release. “I just knew I had to punch my ticket and whatever the time was, I was happy with it.
“When you hurdle with the best it only brings the best out of you.”
Brown, who owns the school record in the 200 meters, placed tenth on Saturday with a time of 23.29. Last season she left nationals with second team All-American honors; this year she has her sights set on more.
“I want to make a statement this time,” she said in a release. “I’m good enough to be with them, so I’m going to go out there and run my best.”
Amosu, the reigning Big Ten champion in the triple jump, is set to return to nationals for the second year in a row after placing eighth with a jump of 15.68 meters.
The men’s 400 meter relay team of Mallet, Vinnie Saucer Jr., Brendan Thompson and Keith Brown will also make the trip to Eugene. The group finished in ninth at the regional with a time of 39.77.
“I am extremely proud of how the entire team competed this weekend,” said UI director of track and field Joey Woody in a release. “We gave it our best in every event and we have a great representation going to Eugene and looking to become All-Americans.”