UF roundup: Track advances at NCAA East prelims


Published: Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 9:39 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 9:39 p.m.

ATHENS, Ga. — Two Gators earned trips to the finals Thursday at the first day of the NCAA East Preliminary Round at North Carolina A&T State University.

Florence Ngetich finished fourth in the women’s 10,000 meters with a time of 33 minutes, 28.10 seconds to advance to the finals in Eugene, Ore. Lorraine Graham will join her, finishing fifth overall in the women’s long jump leaping 6.17 meters.

Twelve Gators advanced out of their preliminary rounds Thursday, including eight women and four men.

For the men, Arman Hall, Hugh Graham and Najee Glass won their heats of the men’s 400 meters to automatically qualify for Friday’s quarters. Hall was just .01 off his collegiate best with a time of 45.58 seconds.

On the women’s team, Robin Reynolds, Ebony Eutsey and Lanie Whittaker who all earned automatic qualifying times of 52.58, 52.61 and 52.66 to advance. All three Gators are also slated to run together as part of Florida’s 4x400-meter relay.

WOMEN'S GOLF: Senior Mia Piccio was the lowest Gator for the second time this week after a third-round, 3-over 75, her second-straight 75 at this championship. However, the No. 9 Gators were not able to sustain momentum on the third day of the NCAA Women's Golf Championship to combine for a 17-over 305 at the UGA Golf Course. The third round is UF's highest round of the week and brings them to 38-over 902 for the tournament.

Southern California still holds the top spot in the team standings at 19-under 845, while the Trojans' own Annie Park is also leading the individual leaderboard at 9-under 207.

For Piccio, it looked like she would card UF's first under-par round of the week as she was 1-under with four holes to go, but the senior played the final holes four-over for the 75. After bogeying the 15th and 17th holes, Piccio double-bogeyed the par-three 16th, but did end on a good note with a birdie at the par-five 18th hole. Piccio will go into today's final round at 7-over as the Gators' highest-placed player.

“We're just making too many silly mistakes,” Florida head coach Emily Bastel said. “We were doing a lot of things right, but we're beating ourselves with silly mistakes that are easily correctable. If we can fix that, we'll be ahead of the game because we've been doing a lot of the difficult things well.”

Freshman Ursa Orehek tied Piccio for the low Gator round on Thursday with a 3-over 75.

WOMEN'S TENNIS: At Urbana, Ill., Florida's Lauren Embree and Sofie Oyen defeated Stanford's Stacey Tan and Ellen Tsay 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 in the first round of the NCAA Doubles Championships held at the at the Khan Outdoor Tennis Complex at the Atkins Tennis Center on a cold and windy afternoon.

“I think we played well,” Embree said. “Sofie played great. The weather conditions were again pretty tough. It was very windy and cold so you just had to try and make balls and stay mentally tough out there.”

Embree and Oyen advance to the round of 16 where they face Alabama's No. 7-ranked Aleza Guarachi and Mary Anne Macfarlane today.

During the regular season dual match, Embree teamed with freshman Brianna Morgan against Guarachi and Macfarlane and dropped a tough 9-8 (9) eight-game pro-set decision.

MEN'S TENNIS: At Champaign, Ill., junior Stephane Piro and senior Bob van Overbeek pulled out a three-set win over Pepperdine's Francis Alcantara and Finn Tearney in the first round of the NCAA Doubles Championship. The Gator duo advances to today's Round of 16.

Piro and van Overbeek were able to take the first set in a tiebreak, 7-6 (1), but then dropped the second set 4-6. In the final deciding set, the Florida pair came out on top 6-4.

The other Florida duo in the doubles competition, senior Billy Federhofer and freshman Gordon Watson, fell to Texas' Chris Camillone and David Holiner, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.—

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