PRINCETON, N.J. (5/17/12) - Seventeen members of the Princeton men's track & field team will participate in the 2012 NCAA East Regional it was announced by the NCAA on Thursday, May 17. The East Regional will be held in Jacksonville, Fla., on the campus of the University of North Florida on May 24-26.
Sophomore Tom Hopkins and junior Russell Dinkins will both race in the 400. The first round of the 400 is slated for 7:20 p.m., on Thursday, May 24. The top three from each of six heats plus the next nine fastest times will advance to the quarterfinal round on Friday at 6 p.m. Hopkins competed in the 400 last year as a freshman. Dinkins has competed in the NCAAs twice in the 800 meters. Hopkins qualified when he set the school record with a time of 46.23 at the George Mason Invitational. His time ranks him in the top-20 in the region. Dinkins qualified with a 47.25 from the Larry Ellis Invitational.
Sophomore Michael Williams will compete in his first NCAA in the 800. The first round of the 800 is at 8:10 p.m., on Thursday with the top three from each of six heats plus the next nine fastest times advancing to the quarterfinals on Friday. Williams boasts a 1:49.53 in the 800 from Heps.
Senior Trevor Van Ackeren will appear in his second outdoor 1500. In 2010, Van Ackeren finished in the top five in his heat at regionals to advance to the semifinals at the championship site. The first round of the 1500 is set for 5:30 p.m., on Thursday. The top five from each of four heats plus the next four fastest times advance to the quarterfinal round on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
The two-time runner-up in the steeplechase senior Donn Cabral has his eyes on the championship this year. He'll also be competing against two teammates, freshmen Connor Martin and Eddie Owens. Cabral has the fifth best time in the regional at 8:39.92. Owens and Martin are both in the top 25 at 8:56.39 and 8:57.61, respectively. The quarterfinal round of the steeplechase is at 8:50 p.m., on Friday. The top three from each of three heats plus the next three fastest times advance to the final in Des Moines, Iowa.
Princeton had the most athletes qualify in the 5,000. Senior Joe Stilin, sophomore Chris Bendtsen, sophomore Tyler Udland and junior Michael Franklin make up four of the 48 competitors. The 5k is scheduled for 8:05 p.m., on Saturday with the the top five from each of two heats plus the next two fastest times advance to Des Moines. Stilin ranks fifth in the region with a time of 13:38.36 from the Raleigh Relays.He competed in the 1500 at NCAAs a year ago and has also raced in the NCAA Cross Country Championships. Bendtsen qualified for this second consecutive outdoor 5k with a 13:57.51 from the George Mason Invitational. Udland and Franklin are both competing in the NCAAs in track for the first time. Udland qualified with a time of 14:05.78 and Franklin at 14:06.82, both from the Raleigh Relays.
Sophomore Alejandro Arroyo Yamin and seniors Thomas Dialynas and Brian Leung qualified in the 10,000. Arroyo Yamin competed in the 5k at regionals last year and qualified with a 29:27.00 from the Sam Howell Invitational. Dialynas is competing in his first NCAAs after running at 29:41.22 at the Howell. Leung has competed in three NCAA Cross Country Championships but is making his first postseason appearance in track. Leung's time of 29:34.72 qualified him for the NCAAs. The 10k is scheduled for 9 p.m., on Thursday with the top 12 advancing to Des Moines.
Princeton has three athletes in the field events.
This is the second year in a row that Slovenski has qualified for the pole vault. His mark of 5.10 meters from the University of Central Florida meet qualified him for the NCAAs. The pole vault will be held at 11 a.m., on Saturday with the top 12 advancing to Des Moines.
McLean has the eighth best mark in the region in the triple jump at 15.88 from the Penn Relays. The triple jump starts at 4:30 p.m., on Friday with the top 12 advancing to the championship in Iowa. This is the first NCAA for the three-time Ivy League triple jump champion.
McCullough owns the best mark in the nation in the hammer throw at 74.01. This is McCullough's first NCAA appearance. A two-time Ivy champ in the event he also sported the best mark in the nation in the weight throw during the indoor season. The hammer is scheduled for 10 a.m., on Friday with the top 12 advancing to the championships.