WASHINGTON - For the first time since 2013, the American University track & field team will have two qualifiers into the NCAA Championships East Preliminary Round, as senior Brianna Belo and junior Matthew Rainey both advanced into the first round of the national championship.
The top-48 individual athletes and top-24 relays in each event in the east region qualify for the preliminary round with the top-12 finishers out of the meet advancing to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore. This year's East Preliminary Round will be hosted by the University of South Florida in Tampa from May 24-26.
Belo will be the third female in program history to qualify for the East Prelim since the NCAA switched to the preliminary round format in 2010. She joins the distinguished group of Erin Koch and Octavia Rinehardt, who both qualified for the meet in 2011.
Belo ranks 41st in the region for the 800-meter run with her latest school-record performance of 2:07.52 from the Colonial Relays in April. She enters the meet off her third career Patriot League title in the event, second during the outdoor season, after she led the conference championship field in 2:07.79.
Rainey, on the other hand, is the fifth qualifier in program history on the men's side and the first since Brendan Johnson advanced in the 10,000m in 2016. Rainey will be the first AU male qualifier in the 1500m run as he ranks 41st in the field with his personal record (PR) and the sixth-fastest time in AU history, 3:45.70.
Rainey will open the meet for the Eagles at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, followed by Belo at 8:35 p.m.
Live streams of both the East and West Preliminary Rounds will be available on FloTrack with a FloPro subscription.
Tickets for the are available online. Single-session tickets are $15 and all-session passes are $35.
For the latest on AU Track & Field, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.