WMU - Gaines, Madison and Negrete Fall Short at NCAA East Regional Championships
Provided by WMU
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Ayiana Gaines, Jade Madison and Stephanie Negrete fell short of advancing to the 2015 NCAA Track & Field Championships after missing out on advancing on Thursday and Friday at the NCAA East Preliminary Championships.
Madison suffered an injury on her first throw in the javelin and was unable to continue competition. The freshman started off her career with the Broncos on a strong note after finishing second in the event at the MAC Championships, also earning Second Team All-MAC honors.
"For Jade it was still a great experience," said head coach Kelly Lycan. "Even though she couldn't compete she was still exposed to a big-time atmosphere and got to watch a great competition."
Gaines, also a freshman, ran her second-fastest time of the season at 54.16 seconds but finished 37th overall, outside the top 24 needed to advance to the semifinals.
"I thought Ayiana did a good job for her first time on the national stage like that," Lycan added. "We are still trying to break some of those high school habits and she needs to learn how to run a bit more aggressive."
Negrete wrapped up her career at Western Michigan with a throw of 45.95m (150-9) in the discus to take 39th overall, missing out on the top 12 that was needed to qualify.
"Stephanie has come a long way from walking-on," said Lycan. "She made herself a national-caliber thrower through hard work and practice. I was so happy to have her come back for her fifth year. Stephanie was just a great leader for us. Things didn't go her way today, but this was her most consistent year of her career and that's a good way to go out."
The season is not over for Gaines and Madison, though. Both have qualified in their events for the USA Junior National Championships in June. They will be joined eventually by fellow freshman Maria McDaniel, who competes in the 5,000-meter run on Saturday evening at 8:30 p.m.