Burchfield Qualifies for Nationals, 10k Records Tumble

 

BRISTOL, Tenn. – The King College track and field team made splashes in two different states, representing the College at the inaugural Johnson City Invitational and the Raleigh Relays, hosted by North Carolinas State University. Shelbie Burchfield qualified for NCAA Division II Outdoor National Championships in the women's high jump competition while Naseem Haje, Hannah Witt, and Kendra Sokol all broke King's 10k run records.

Shelbie Burchfield achieved the provisional qualifying mark in the women's high jump competition at the Johnson City Invitational, cohosted by Science Hill High School and Milligan College. The freshman from Morristown, Tenn., hit the 5-foot, 6-inch marker to qualify her for the NCAA Division II Outdoor National Championship this May. Her jump not only qualified her to go to Pueblo, Colo., but also earned her a win in the event, defeating the next nearest competition. 

Continuing with the throwers, Maegan Henry (Bluefield, Va.) had another standout day in both the women's shot put and discus throw events. Henry tossed the rock toward a win in the shot put and finished second in the discus toss.

King's distance runners not only broke, but shattered previous program records in the 10,000-meter run on both the men's and women's sides. Naseem Haje (Hagerstown, Md.) broke the 10k school record by more than 1:30 with a total time of 31:11.81, finishing 11thoverall in the 42-man field. In his first time running the event this outdoor season, his run was 22 seconds of the national qualifying mark. Haje is also the current King College men's 5k record holder, a mark he set at the 49er Invitational in Charlotte earlier this month.

The Tornado witnessed two runners break the school women's 10k mark on the same day when Hannah Witt (Mountain City, Tenn.) and Kendra Sokol (Kingsport, Tenn.) both broke the old record of 38:46 in the event. Witt and Sokol finished just six seconds apart in their pack of runners, taking 24th and 26th place, respectively. Witt ran the race in 37:39, and now holds the top spot in the record books after breaking the record by more than a minute, while Sokol finished with a run of 37:45.

In other notable performances at the Raleigh Relays, Spencer Frantom (Morristown, Tenn.) finished 18th overall while setting a new personal record in the men's 5k, crossing the line at 15:19. He broke his former PR by more than 10 seconds. Women's 5k runner Evan Farrell also set a new PR, breaking her previous best that she recently set at the 49er Classic by 18 seconds with an 18:41.55 run.

More details and complete results from the Johnson City Invitational will come later.