In the first of many championships meets to be held at the new Hayward Field in Eugene, OR, the NCAA D1 Track and Field Championships did not disappoint. Ten former Indiana high school athletes made their way to the championships meet, with 5 of them coming away with All-American honors.
The weekend was highlighted by Cathedral grad, Cole Hocker, racing in both the 1500 and the 5000. Hocker got his rd NCAA title of 2021 in the 1500, his first came during the indoor champs in the one mile and the 2nd in the 3K, topping Yared Nuguse of Notre Dame, the current 1500 collegiate record holder in a time of 3:35.35 to 3:35.60. Hocker was just .05 off of the meet record set back in 1981.
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Just about an hour and a half later, Hocker came back for the 5000 meters final. That short recovery time did not seem to bother the 20 year old, as he blazed the final lap in just 56.02 seconds, crossing the line in 4th with a time of 13:18.95. His teammate Cooper Teare took 1st in a meet record time of 13:12.27.
Among Indiana alumni, Hocker now ranks No.2 for the 1500, just Andy Bayer from Leo stand between him and the No. 1 spot. And he is No.1 in the 5000, with his NCAA mark putting him 1 second above Rudy Chapa from 1979.
Also in that 5K race was Ben Veatch from Carmel, the junior took 24th in a time of 14:09.60.
Another former Greyhound, Kelsey Harris took 9th in the women's 1500 in a time of 4:13.93
Four Indiana alumni competed in the pole vault, 3 men and 1 woman.
Kayla Smith from Lawrence Central and in her senior season for the University of Georgia took 5th overall with a clearance of 14ft 3.75in.
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On the men's side of pole vault, two walked away with All-American titles and one earned some great experience competing in his first NCAA experience.
Taking 3rd overall was Ethan Bray formerly of Hamilton Southeastern and in his final year at South Dakota, with a clearance of 18ft 2.5in. In 6th is former Carmel Greyhound, Ryan Lipe, now at Alabama, with a clearance of 17ft 10.5in. Gaining valuable experience and taking 13th overall is former Lawrence North Wildcat and current Indiana Hoosier, Nathan Stone with a clearance of 16ft 10.75in.
Over at the high jump pit on Saturday, Shelby Tyler cleared a collegiate best for her at 6ft 0.5in. In her first collegiate outdoor season, the former Noblesville Miller took 5th overall to earn her hopefully first of many All-American honors.
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Sam Volez, a New Palestine grad, took 10th in the semifinals of the 800 in 1:47.91
Angelina Ellis, a Zionsville grad, took 21st in the 3K steeple semifinals in a time of 10:06.78