JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – UNCG senior Joey Thompson battled tough conditions Friday evening in the first heat of the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the NCAA East Preliminary Round hosted by the University of North Florida, finishing 42nd overall in the event to close out his career.
With evening temperatures in the high 80s, it was a difficult night to run any race, let alone one as grueling as the steeplechase. The event started out at a blistering pace, allowing the leaders to break away from the pack in the early going, but Thompson, the school record-holder in the event, was able to respond, sticking with the leaders for close to a mile before finishing in a time of 9.18.59.
Only the top 12 in the event advance to the NCAA Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, on July 6-9.
Saturday evening, a group of Spartans will be running the 5,000 meters, including No. 1 seed Paul Chelimo on the men’s side. Ashley Schnell and sisters Shaina Sumney and Chelsea Sumney make up the trio of UNCG women racing that distance. The men’s race will begin at 8:05 p.m. and the women will follow at 8:45 p.m.
3,000m steeplechase: 42. Joey Thompson, 9:18.59