Spartans Travel to Bloomington for NCAA East Preliminary Round

NCAA East Preliminary Round
Date: Wednesday-Friday, May 25-28
Time: 10 a.m. (Wednesday-Thursday); 5:15 p.m. (Friday); 1 p.m. (Saturday)
Location: Haugh Track & Field Complex (Bloomington, Indiana)
Schedule: PDF
Live Results: Flash Results
MSU Notes: PDF

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Fresh off collecting eight medals at the Big Ten Championships, the Michigan State track and field team now heads to the NCAA Division I Outdoor East Preliminary Round this week in Bloomington, Indiana.


Being held at Indiana University’s Haugh Track & Field Complex from Wednesday, May 25 to Saturday, May 28, the NCAA regional meet will feature 15 Spartans competing for a chance to qualify for June’s NCAA Championships in Eugene, Oregon.


With Ryan Talbot and Heath Baldwin already having spots in Eugene secured for the men’s decathlon, MSU will look to add to that number starting on Wednesday, when four Spartan men begin competition, headlined by 2021 NCAA Second Team All-American pole vaulter Trevor Stephenson and 2022 Big Ten 1500m bronze medalist John Petruno.


Thursday will feature nine MSU women competing, including four 2021 All-Americans, as Jenna Magness will run her second-career 10,000m race after being a First Team All-American last season in the 5000m, while Sophia Franklin (Second Team – pole vault), Lynsie Gram (Honorable Mention – 10,000m) and Quiara Wheeler (Honorable Mention – hammer throw) are all looking to get back to Oregon as well.


A 2021 First Team All-American, Morgan Beadlescomb will run the men’s 5000m on Friday evening, while Saturday’s slate will include rookie Kate Stewart-Barnett in the women’s 3000m steeplechase and Wheeler pulling double duty with the women’s discus throw.


The Spartans took home four titles at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships in Minneapolis, Minnesota, as Magness won the women’s 10,000m championship in her first race at the distance and then defended her 5000m crown two days later, while Beadlescomb also won the men’s 10,000m in his first track race at the distance. Talbot claimed his first Big Ten crown in the men’s decathlon with a school-record 8,064 points.


With eight medals and 14 total placers at the conference meet, MSU finished eighth on the women’s side (49 points) and 10th in the men’s standings (38 points). In addition to the title winners, the Spartans had a pair of runner-ups, as Wheeler took second in the women’s hammer throw and Katie Osika finished second in the women’s 1500m, while Baldwin took third in the decathlon and Petruno earned bronze in the men’s 1500m for the second-straight season.


Five of the nine MSU distance runners in Bloomington reached the NCAA East Preliminary Round for the second year in a row, with the women’s 1500m trio of Osika, Lauren Freeland and Melanie Helder all set to make their regional debuts on Thursday and Stewart-Barnett slated for her NCAA preliminary debut on Saturday in the 3000m steeplechase.


Entering the week, Beadlescomb is the No. 1 seed on the East qualifying list for the men’s 5000m, posting a 13:17.16 school-record time at the Bryan Clay Invitational that ranks 10th in NCAA history. Petruno is 17th at 1500m with a then-school record pace of 3:40.43 at the Raleigh Relays. On the women’s side, Makayla Perez is 12th regionally in the women’s 10,000m after a 33:36.86 time at the Raleigh Relays and Magness is 13th after posting a 33:37.17 winning time in the B1G Championships’ 10,000m race, with Gram being 21st in the 10,000m distance after a 33:51.14 time in Raleigh.

Freeland is 20th in the 1500m (4:17.14), followed by Helder at No. 28 (4:18.09) and Osika at No. 34 (4:18.53) thanks to their first trip to Bloomington this spring, while Stewart-Barnett is 25th in the steeplechase with a 10:11.39 time from Raleigh.


The Michigan State sprinters will have a pair of entrants from sprints, as Jaiden Paris will run as the No. 22 seed in the women’s 100m hurdles after setting the school record earlier this spring, while former state and national high school champion Terrence Muex qualified for the men’s 400m dash as the 46th seed in his true freshman season.


Paris established the new program record in the 100m hurdles with a 13.35 mark at the Indiana Invitational and just missed out on a chance at the B1G Championships’ finals by finishing ninth in the preliminary heats. For Muex, he qualified using a 46.59 time that won him his prelim heat at the Big Ten Championships, as he ended up finishing ninth in the conference finals. Noah Sage also qualified for the men’s 400m at the NCAA First Round with a 46.55 mark at the Raleigh Relays but was forced to scratch this week due to injury.


While the decathlon duo of Talbot and Baldwin are off this week, the jumps squad will still have a formidable pair competing in Bloomington, as the two reigning Second Team All-American pole vaulters for MSU, Franklin and Stephenson, will both look to punch their ticket to the NCAA finals for the second-straight year. While Franklin had a less than ideal showing at the Big Ten Championships in her attempt to repeat at conference women’s champion, Stephenson did end up taking fifth place in the men’s event.


Franklin tallied a season-best vault of 4.32m at the Spartan Invite to rank 10th in the region currently, while Stephenson is also 10th on the men’s regional list with a 5.41m personal-record vault at the Raleigh Relays.


A pair of Spartan throwers are slated to compete in Bloomington this week, as Wheeler will look to build off her silver-medal performance at the Big Ten Championships in the women’s hammer and then turn her attention to the women’s discus later in the week, while Joshua DeVries will be the first Spartan to compete this week when he makes his NCAA regional debut in the men’s hammer throw.


Wheeler achieved a season-best 63.95m in the hammer throw at the Big Ten Championships that put her 13th in the region, while her personal-record discus toss of 51.34m (ranked 40th) came at the Indiana Invitational. DeVries tallied his personal best in the hammer throw with a 61.41m mark at the Ashland Alumni Open late last month, putting him 45th in the East Region.


Talbot, Baldwin and any other Spartans who quality will head to the NCAA Outdoor Championships in two weeks, being held June 8-11 at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.


Michigan State Men’s Entries (5)

Josh DeVries – Hammer Throw

Trevor Stephenson – Pole Vault

John Petruno – 1500m

Terrence Muex – 400m

Morgan Beadlescomb – 5000m


Michigan State Women’s Entries (10)

Quiara Wheeler – Hammer Throw, Discus Throw

Sophia Franklin – Pole Vault

Jaiden Paris – 100m Hurdles

Lauren Freeland – 1500m

Melanie Helder – 1500m

Katie Osika – 1500m

Lynsie Gram – 10,000m

Jenna Magness – 10,000m

Makayla Perez – 10,000m

Kate Stewart-Barnett – 3000m Steeplechase