HPU’s Rickert Places 23rd in Javelin at NCAA Preliminary Track & Field

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Freshman Christine Rickert of the High Point University women’s track & field team placed 23rd in the javelin at the NCAA Championship Preliminary on Saturday at North Carolina A&T in Greensboro, N.C. Rickert threw the javelin 44.51 meters (146-0) on her first attempt.

“She made a strong improvement this season, a strong growth over her high school career,” said HPU associate head coach Eric Dudley. “It’s a different ballgame at the collegiate level. Obviously she had a few big throws earlier this season and we were able to keep her healthy all the way through, which is important for the javelin.

“She got a chance to experience this level of competition as a freshman, learn about herself and manage pressure situations. As we’ve seen, you don’t get that many chances. We came in with the expectation to get the job done but we’re going to have to take this as a learning experience because that’s the situation we’re in now.”

Lauren Kenney of Penn State won the javelin with a throw of 54.02 meters (177-3) and the top 12 finishers advance to the NCAA Championship Final in Eugene, Oregon, June 5-8. Lauren Lubarski of East Carolina placed 12th with a throw of 47.01 meters (154-3).

Rickert’s season-best javelin throw was an HPU-record 47.78 meters (156-9) at the Liberty Collegiate Invitational on April 6. She will continue her season, competing in the USATF Junior National Championship on June 20 in Des Moines, Iowa.

“We’ve got U.S. Juniors coming up and we’re excited about that,” said Dudley. “We hope to continue the growth and progress and have a good meet there. The entire focus, mentally and physically, has been with the meet today so we haven’t planned the preparation for that, but we’ll start working on that now.”

Four members of the HPU men’s track & field team competed in the NCAA Championship Preliminary on Friday at Aggie Stadium. Senior Dakota Peachee won his heat of the 3,000-meter steeplechase to advance to the NCAA Championship Final.