Track & Field

@ndxctf
Irish Travel To Eugene for NCAA Championships

June 5, 2017

By Megan Golden

EUGENE, Oreg. -- For the 26th straight season, the University of Notre Dame is headed to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. The Irish will send five student-athletes to Eugene in search of the program’s first outdoor individual national title since Molly Seidel won the 10,000m in 2015.

WHAT: NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships
WHEN: June 7-10, 2017
WHERE: University of Oregon’s Hayward Field (Eugene, Oregon)
TV: ESPN

NCAA Championship History

The Irish track and field team has traveled to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in 26 consecutive seasons. The women’s squad has made 24 straight appearances in the outdoor meet (1994-2017), while the men’s squad has qualified in 22 of the last 23 seasons (1995-2017).

Notre Dame has had more than one student-athlete qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Championships 41 times (18 seasons with two or more women; 37 seasons with two or more men).

The Irish men own 25 top-25 finishes and 16 top-15 performances. The team has finished in the top three overall on three different occasions (2nd, 1921; 2nd, 1944; 3rd, 1922). The women’s team owns three top-25 finishes (17th, 1999; 24, 2009; 25, 2003). Notre Dame owns 16 individual titles. The men own 12 individual titles, and the women own four.

What to Watch

Senior Nate Richartz opens the action for the Irish at 8 p.m. ET in the men’s pole vault. Richartz, who owns the school record (5.51m; 18-1), will make his second career appearance at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. 

Richartz’s school record 5.51m jump ranks tied for 10th nationally entering the championships. The Island Lake, Illinois, pole vaulter last competed in the NCAA Championships in the spring of 2015, when he recorded a 5.15m (6-10.75) vault.

Graduate student Danielle Aragon and junior Jessica Harris set back-to-back school records in the NCAA quarterfinals of the 1,500m. Aragon ran a 4:12.50 to break her own school record, and Harris immediately broke the record with a 4:11.67 mark in the following heat.

Harris will race in her seventh career 1,500m race and sixth of the season. She will make her first career appearance at the outdoor championships. Harris, who finished fourth in the 1,500m at the ACC Championships, is a three-time All-American (three top-eight DMR finishes). Harris advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals in the 800m last year but came shy of qualifying for nationals.

Aragon, a four-time All-American, will compete in the 1,500m race alongside Harris and Aragon’s sister and Stanford freshman Christina Aragon. Aragon’s father, Chuck, was a two-time All-American for the Irish, coming in sixth place in the two-mile relay in 1979 and placing fifth in the 1,500m in 1981.

Four-time All-American and sophomore Anna Rohrer heads to Eugene in search of her first national title. Rohrer recorded the fastest time in the world in 2017 with a time of 31:58.99 in the 10,000m at the Stanford Invitational. The mark set the ACC and a Notre Dame records and currently ranks No. 1 in the country in the event.

Rohrer, the 2016 Atlantic Coast Conference Cross Country champion and 2017 ACC Indoor 5,000m champion, won her third and fourth ACC titles in the outdoor 10,000m and 5,000m on May 12 and May 14, respectively. She competed in the 5,000m at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships, finishing third overall with a time of 15:29.83.

Irish high-jumper Matthew Birzer will make his debut at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Birzer qualified for the NCAA finals with a 2.15m mark (fourth in the East Region). Entering the regional meet, Birzer was tied for No. 10 in the East with a season-best 2.16m jump. Birzer owns a 2.17m personal record, achieved at the 2016 ACC Championships.

“I’m excited,” Birzer said. “This is what I’ve been working toward for the last nine months. I’m nervous, but I trust Coach (Jim) Garnham has me in a position where I’m physically ready to peak.”

Meet Notes


 

 

  • The Irish have sent five athletes to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in two straight seasons.
  • The last outdoor championship won by an individual Irish athlete occurred when Molly Seidel won the 10,000m title in 2015. On the men’s side, the most recent outdoor individual title was Ryan Shay’s victory in the 10,000m in 2001. Between indoor and outdoor track and field and cross country, Notre Dame’s last individual championships were Seidel’s back-to-back gold medals during the 2016 NCAA Indoor Championships.
  • The Irish have broken nine program records this season, including those set during the indoor and outdoor seasons. The men have set four records, while the women have set five.
Irish Schedule


Wednesday, June 7:
8 p.m. ET Nate Richartz Men's Pole Vault Final
Thursday, June 8: 
7:46 p.m. Jessica Harris Women's 1,500m Semifinal
7:46 p.m. Danielle Aragon Women's 1,500m Semifinal
10:08 p.m. Anna Rohrer Women's 10,000m Final
Friday, June 9:
6 p.m. Matthew Birzer Men's High Jump Final
Saturday, June 10:
6:41 p.m. Harris & Aragon Women's 1,500m Final

Meet Coverage

The NCAA Championships will be broadcast by the ESPN Family of Networks for the duration of the four-day meet. See the complete broadcast schedule below. 
 
Wednesday, June 7:
6:30 p.m. ET ESPN3
10:30 p.m. ESPNU
11:30 p.m. ESPN2
Thursday, June 8:
4:30 p.m. ESPN3
10:30 p.m. ESPN2
Friday, June 9:
6:30 p.m. ESPN3
11:30 p.m. ESPN
Saturday, June 10:
5:30 p.m. ESPN3
9:30 p.m. ESPN

Fans are encouraged to view the entire event schedule here

For a closer, behind-the-scenes look at the Irish track and field program, follow @NDXCTF on Twitter.

--ND--

Megan Golden, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since August of 2016. In her role, she coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame women's lacrosse and cross country/track and field programs. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Golden is a 2014 graduate of Saint Mary's College and former Irish women’s basketball manager. Prior to arriving at Notre Dame, she worked in public relations with the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox.

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