Pittsburg State junior NaRon Rollins, a former Platte County star, earned two medals and All-American honors in the 100 and 200 meter dashes at the NCAA Division II National Track and Field Championships held this weekend in Charlotte, N.C.
Rollins who owned the fastest time recorded in the 100 in Division II entering the weekend, earned second place in the dash with a 10.22 second effort. He grabbed a bronze medal in the 200 (20.59).
Rollins was one of three local athletes to earn a medal at the championships with Northwest Missouri State sophomore Jordan Hammond finishing second in the 400 hurdles.
Hammond, who is from Park Hill South, ran a personal best 58.77 in the one-lap circuit with added obstacles to grab the runner up spot a second and a half behind Shannon Kalawa of St. Augustine’s, who claimed the title.
Fellow Bearcats athlete Kevin Schultz, a junior originally from Platte City, tied for eighth to grab an All-American finish in the high jump clearing 6-10¼. He finished 11th in the decathlon.
Nilsen punches ticket back to NCAA D-I finals
Park Hill graduate Chris Nilsen is heading back to the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field
The South Dakota sophomore was one of four vaulters to tie for first place on Thursday, May 24, in the NCAA West Preliminary held in Sacramento, Calif.
Nilsen’s first attempt was 17 feet, 2 ¾ inches after passing on the first three bars.
Teammate Jake David also advances, giving the Coyotes two pole vaulters in the national finals for the first time in program history.
Nilsen enters the finals with the highest vault in the nation at 19-2 ¾ and will look to build off a third-place finish in last year’s outdoor finals.
Rollins is USTFCCCA outdoor male athlete of the year
NaRon Rollins added more accolades to his resume shortly before the NCAA Division II National Championships. The United State Track Field and Cross Country Coches Association named him the male outdoor athlete of the year for Division II.
Rollins, a Platte City, Mo., native, was the MIAA Champion in the 100 and 200, as well as picking up the MIAA High Point Scorer award. His time of 10.09 in the 100 meters during the regular season was tops in NCAA Division II. He was just one of two athletes to hit Automatic Qualifying Marks in the 100 and 200 this year, while he was also a part of two relay teams that hit Provisional Qualifying Marks.