March 11, 2009
Indoor Nationals Await Three Bearcats in Houston
MARYVILLE, Mo. - Emily Churchman, Ben McKim and Tyler Shaw arrived in Houston Tuesday for opening ceremonies and will participate in community engagement activities today before making their first career appearnces in the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships March 13-14 at the University of Houston.
The Bearcats join 900 Division II athletes competing for five team and 80 national titles in track and field, wrestling and swimming at the Division II Winter Championships Festival. Competition began today with swimming. Wrestling and track and field both start Friday.
Shaw will start the Bearcats off with the preliminaries of the 60-meter hurdles at 6:15 p.m. Friday night. He enters with Division II's fifth-best time at 8.09, which he ran in his third collegiate race at the UCM Mule Relays Feb. 7. Shaw is trying to become the first Bearcat All-American in the hurdles since Renwick Bovell finish sixth in the 55-meter hurdles in 1990.
The hurdles will be run in two heats Friday with the winner plus next six times advancing to Saturday's 5:05 p.m. finals.
Churchman will be a part of NCAA history Saturday morning for the inaugural women's pentathlon. She will start with the 60-meter hurdles at 9 a.m. and conclude with the 800-meter run at approximately 1:30 p.m. Churchman set or matched career bests in all five events at the MIAA Championships Feb. 27 and finished second with a program-record 3,541 points. She is ninth nationally and one of four MIAA athletes in the 12-athlete field.
McKim will compete in the shot put at 2:05 p.m. Saturday and look to become the ninth Bearcat and second McKim to earn All-America honors in the event. His older brother, Daniel, finished eighth at the 2003 indoor championships in the shot put with a career-best 56-10 1/2. Ben is tied for eighth in national performance lists with 55-11 3/4 from the Central Missouri Classic Feb. 20.
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