TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Duke Track and Field team began competition in the NCAA East Regional at Mike Long Track on Friday. The men finished the day tied for 13th place with six points on the strength of redshirt freshman John Austin’s performance in the javelin, while the women saw junior Molly Lehman make the Saturday finals in the 1,500m.
Austin re-set his own Duke record on Friday night when he tossed the javelin 225’-5” in Tallahassee. That placed him third and automatically qualified him for the NCAA Championships from June 11-14 in Des Moines, Iowa. Austin has now finished in the top three in all eights meets this year, which includes three first-place finishes.
Lehman tied for the sixth-fastest time in the 1,500m preliminaries on Friday afternoon at Florida State with a clocking of 4:22.01. That shattered her personal best in the event by over two seconds and is the second-best time ever in the Duke records. Lehman will run in the 1,500m finals on Saturday at 4:20 p.m. If she finishes in the top five, she will automatically qualify for the NCAA Championships.
In other Blue Devil events, freshman Amy Matulewicz placed 16th in the javelin with a 137’-10” throw and senior Chris Spooner wrapped up his career in the 1,500m with a 3:59.13 clocking for 30th place.
A Look Ahead: Events will continue from 10:00 a.m. - 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, with Lehman and the men’s and women’s steeplechase being the events to watch for Duke. The top five finishers in each event automatically qualify for the NCAA Championships. The 6th through 12th place finishers from each event are then placed in a pool with 21 student-athletes from the other three regions. From that group, the top seven or eight make the NCAA’s based on season-bests.