Montana State

MSU track standouts to compete at national meet in Eugene


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BOZEMAN, Mont. – The Montana State track and field program will be represented on the national stage this week by Lucy Corbett and Duncan Hamilton. The two Bobcats are gearing up to compete at the renovated Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore., which is set to host the NCAA meet for the first time since 2018.

Hamilton makes his debut at the 2021 national meet on Wednesday when he participates in the first heat of the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase which begins at 6:32 p.m. MDT. The Bobcat distance runner, who also advanced to this year’s NCAA cross country and indoor track and field championships, is the fourth MSU men’s athlete to advance to the NCAA outdoor meet in the steeplechase. He’s the first to make it to the NCAA Championships in the event since his coach Lyle Weese took fifth at the 2003 meet.

The Bozeman native will hope to place in the top five of his heat, or complete one of the two next best times, to advance to the finals on Friday. If Hamilton does so, the final race takes place at 6:24 p.m. He enters the semifinals race on Wednesday having clocked the fourth fastest time overall (8:39.02) during the preliminary round stage ahead of the NCAA Championships.

“I’m super excited,” Hamilton said of racing at Hayward Field. “It’ll definitely be a little different because I’ve never competed in a prelims in the steeplechase, so I guess the race strategy will be to stick with that top group and try to make it into the top five of my heat.

“Honestly just making the finals would be amazing. To know I’m in the top 12 in the country, that I can race with the best guys in the NCAA, that would be great.”

MSU’s men’s team has produced a total of 14 Bobcats that have combined for 16 total All-America performances. Cristian Soratos is the men’s squad’s last outdoor First Team All-American as he placed seventh in the 1,500 at the 2015 NCAA Championships.

Track events are expected to be carried on the main broadcast of the NCAA Championships carried on ESPN. Hamilton’s semifinals race should air on ESPNU, while the finals air on ESPN2.

Corbett is the first Bobcat high jumper ever to qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Her event will feature 24 women who will participate in a high jump field that is set to start action in the event at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday. Corbett advanced to the meet by clearing all four jumps during the preliminary round action. She and 16 other competitors cleared 5 feet, 11 inches (1.82m) to advance to Eugene. Corbett’s best this season of 6 feet (1.83m), which she set at the Big Sky Conference Outdoor Championships, was tied for sixth best in the nation. A stream that features the high jump competition specifically will be broadcast on ESPN3 and on the WatchESPN app.

“I only high jumped at one meet this season, so I was just hoping to go out and be able to compete with some of the top girls in our conference,” Corbett said of her appearance at the Big Sky meet. “I was happy to just finally be able and high jump again. I was trying not to think about qualifying for regionals, just go and show up for the conference meet.

“I’m grateful that I was able to make it (to Eugene). I ‘m really excited to go and compete… Going into next week my goal is that I want to hit the 6-foot-1 mark.”

The women’s squad has had a total of six athletes combined for seven All-America efforts in program history. The last All-America showing for the Bobcat women was by Alyssa Snyder who tied MSU’s best performance at an NCAA Outdoor Championship in 2017 when she placed seventh in the 10,000.

The top eight finishers in each meet at the NCAA Championships earn First Team All-America accolades. Second Team All-America honors are bestowed upon those that place 9-16 overall in their individual event, while the remaining competitors claim honorable mention accolades.  

Competition Schedule

Duncan Hamilton (3,000m Steeplechase)

Semifinals: Wednesday, June 9 – Starts at 6:32 p.m. MDT (Heat 1 of 2 | Airs on ESPNU)

Finals: Friday, June 11- Starts at 6:24 p.m. MDT (If Advances | Airs on ESPN2)

Lucy Corbett (High Jump)

Finals: Saturday, June 12 – Starts at 3:30 p.m. MDT (Exclusive event stream on ESPN3 and WatchESPN app)

About Colter Nuanez

Colter Nuanez is the co-founder and senior writer for Skyline Sports. After spending six years in the newspaper industry with stops at the Missoulian, the Ellensburg Daily Record and the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, the former Washington Newspaper Association Sportswriter of the Year and University of Montana Journalism School graduate ('09) has cultivated a deep passion for sports journalism during his 13-year career covering the Big Sky Conference. In August of 2014, Colter and brother Brooks merged their passions of writing and art to found Skyline Sports.

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