Amherst Sends Five to NCAA Outdoor Championships

Contact: Ben Badua

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AMHERST, MA – The NCAA Division III Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Committee recently announced the participants in the 2011 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, with five Lord Jeffs poised to represent Amherst College at the meet.

A maximum of 796 participants (398 men and 398 women) will compete in the three-day championship beginning on Thursday, May 26 at the Selby Field and George Gauthier Track on the campus of Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware, Ohio.

Qualifying for this year’s men’s championship are junior Ben Scheetz (Lancaster, PA) in the 800-meter run and Amherst’s 4x400 relay team of junior Andrew Reed (Riverside, CT), senior Tommy Moore (Marlborough, MA), first-year Matt Melton (Wall, NJ) and Scheetz. Competing for the Lord Jeff women is junior Melissa Sullivan (Dallas, TX) in the 1500-meter run.

The reigning USTFCCCA Indoor Men’s Athlete of the Year, Scheetz enjoyed a tremendous winter campaign in which he captured the 800-meter indoor crown with a Capital Center Track record time of 1:51.26. The meet’s Most Outstanding Performer, he led the Jeffs to a program-record 18 points and sixth-place finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships, becoming just the second male in school history to claim a national title.

Already Amherst’s indoor recordholder in the 400, 500, 600 and 800, Scheetz continued to impress this spring, taking aim at the school’s outdoor marks, registering a top-qualifying time of 1:48.71 at Princeton’s Larry Ellis Memorial Invitational – shattering the program’s old record by 1.51 seconds. The Lancaster, PA native also took home the 2011 NESCAC Outdoor Championship in the 800, clocking in at 1:53.44, while also finishing first in the event at the Open New England Championships with a time of 1:49.52.

In addition to his individual success, Scheetz has also helped anchor the Lord Jeffs 4x400 relay team, which qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships with a program-record time of 3:15.10 at the Open New England meet. Reed, Moore, Melton and Scheetz, who earned All-America honors at the Indoor Championships with a sixth-place time of 3:20.87, also placed first at the Little Three Championships with a time of 3:22.79, while crossing the tape with  a championship best mark of 3:19.18 at the NESCACs.

Sullivan will look to improve upon last year’s 12th-place showing in the 1500 at the NCAA’s Outdoor Championship following another superb spring season. The Dallas, TX native recorded the upcoming championship’s 12th-fastest qualifying time of 4:33.36 at the ECAC meet on May 20. Sullivan, an All-NESCAC honoree, also registered a pair of runner-up finishes at the NESCAC Championships and DIII Regional Championships with times of 4:35.46 and 4:37.96, respectively.

To follow the Lord Jeffs and access useful links, including a complete schedule of events, live video, results and blogs, please visit the Ohio Wesleyan’s NCAA Division III Outdoor Championship website.

AMHERST SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Thursday, May 26
6:15 p.m. – Men’s 4x400 Relay
7 p.m. – Women’s 1500m Run

Friday, May 27
7 p.m. – Men’s 4x400 Relay
8 p.m. – Men’s 800m Run

Saturday, May 28
1:30 p.m. – Men’s 4x400 Relay
2 p.m. – Women’s 1500m Run
3:20 p.m. – Men’s 800m Run