Richmond, Va. -- University of Lynchburg's men's and women's track & field teams made their last bids for a national qualifier over the weekend at a pair of meets.
Lynchburg's sprinters and throwers competed Sunday at Virginia Commonwealth University's Final Qualifier in Richmond, Va., and the distance runners went to Monday's Final Qualifier at Swarthmore College in Swarthmore, Pa.
Sophomore Julian Douglas (Lynchburg, Va.) leapt into 17th on the NCAA Division III leaderboard with a huge personal-best in the long jump, covering 23-6 ¼ feet to highlight the action from VCU. The top 20 men in each event qualify for this month's national championship meet. The cutoff for qualifying marks is Thursday.
Douglas' mark also ranks fifth on Lynchburg's all-time leaderboard. He finished second in the event.
Freshman Alex Shadkhoo (Herndon, Va.) finished second in the 200-meter dash (21.8), just off his season-best.
The women's pole vault duo of senior Madeline Van Aken (Blacksburg, Va.) and freshman Bailey Casto (Evington, Va.) finished one-two in that event. Van Aken's mark of 11-4 ¼ won the event, while Casto's personal-record 10-8 ¼ vault put her sixth on Lynchburg's all-time leaderboard and second at the meet.
At Swarthmore, Lynchburg saw its women's distance runners have a huge day in the 5,000-meter run. Sophomore Stephanie Burnett (Midlothian, Va.) set a new personal record, finishing in 17:45.32 for the second-best time in program history. Senior Samantha Schreiber (Gladys, Va.) wasn't far behind at 17:52.3, also a personal best and good enough for third in the program annals.
Lynchburg's track & field teams will wait on the announcement of the Division III national field, which will be announced Saturday, May 18 by release on NCAA.com. The national meet is scheduled for May 23-25 at SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio.