Seven Thunderbirds Headed To Austin For NCAA West Prelims
CEDAR CITY, Utah - Seven members of the Thunderbird men's track and field team will be continuing their season at NCAA West Preliminaries in Austin, Texas. This marks the most athletes the Thunderbirds have sent to Regionals since the setup was restructured to feature a West and East Regional. The meet will run from May 25-27.
Sophomore Kasey Knevelbaard from Caruthers, California, will be competing in the 1,500-meter and the 5,000-meter in Austin.
Knevelbaard is currently ranked 18th in the NCAA in the 1,500-meter with a time of 3:41.76 that was set at the Stanford Invitational. He is also ranked 29th in the 5,000-meter. Knevelbaard is the school record holder in the 1,500-meter.
Knevelbaard claimed the Big Sky Championship in the 1,500-meter.
Senior Jayson Kovar is seeking his second-straight trip to the NCAA National Championships in the discus, which will be the lone event he will be competing in at NCAA Regionals.
Kovar is currently ranked 25th in the NCAA in the discus with a season-best of 190' 10''.
Last season Kovar earned Second Team All-American status in the event, finishing in ninth place with a throw of 189' 6''.
Kovar won the Big Sky Championship in the discus.
Justin Lewis will be competing in the 400-meter dash for the Thunderbirds at West Regionals.
Lewis set his best time of the season at the Big Sky Outdoor Championships, running a 46.88 and finishing runner-up in the event. Lewis is coming off a redshirt season indoors and bounced back strong to qualify for Regionals.
Lewis is now No. 2 all-time in the SUU record book in the 400-meter.
Sophomore Devon Montgomery will be making his second-straight trip to Regionals, competing in the 110-meter hurdles.
Montgomery competed in the same race at Regionals in Lawrence, Kansas, last season and finished with a time of 14.37.
Montgomery is the school record holder in the 110-meter hurdles.
Freshman Jeff Rowley will be making his first appearance at NCAA Regionals in just his first year at the university in the javelin.
The native of Nephi, Utah, set a mark of 210' to qualify for the field. He is currently 84th in the NCAA and 40th in the West Region.
Rowley was the bronze medalist in the javelin throw at the Big Sky Championships.
Mike Tate, a junior from Antigonish, Nova Scotia, will be representing the Thunderbirds in the 5,000-meter at the West Preliminaries. Tate is currently third in the entire NCAA in the event, and second in the West Region.
Tate's top time this season of 13:34.28 came at the Payton Jordan Invitational, where he finished behind the only two runners ahead of him in the 5K rankings, Justyn Knight and Edward Cheserek. He is second in the SUU record book in the event behind only former National Champion Cam Levins.
Tate claimed the Big Sky Championship in the 5,000-meter.
Junior Matt Wright will be competing in the 10,000-meter at the Regional Championships. Wright set the 35th best time in the West at the Mt. SAC Relays with a time of 29:27.91.
Wright was the runner-up in the 10K at the Big Sky Championships to Tate. He is currently sixth in the SUU record book in the event.
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