ACC Track & Field: Conference Well-Represented at NCAA East Prelims

Competition is scheduled Thursday through Saturday at Jacksonville, Florida

GREENSBORO, N.C. ( – Seven student-athletes seeded No. 1 in their respective events are among the 281 from Atlantic Coast Conference schools set to compete at this week’s NCAA Outdoor Track and Field East Preliminary Round at Jacksonville, Florida.

Clemson senior Tevin Hester (100 meters), Virginia junior Henry Wynne (1500 meters) and Florida State grad student Stefan Brits (long jump) hold top seeds on the men’s side. Women’s top-seeded competitors from ACC schools include Miami junior Shakima Wimbley (400 meters), Boston College senior Liv Westphal (5000 meters), Duke senior Megan Clark (pole vault), and Florida State junior Kellion Knibb (discus).

The preliminary competitions are scheduled for May 26-28. The University of North Florida in hosts the East Region and the West Region is at the University of. The qualifiers out of these regions compete in the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships held June 8-11 in Eugene, Oregon.

Hester, the Men’s Track MVP of the recent ACC Outdoor Track and Field Championships, boasts a PR of 9.99 in the 100. Virginia’s Wynne, who claimed the NCAA gold medal in the men’s indoor mile, boasts a school-record 3:38.05 time in the outdoor 1500. FSU’s Brits delivered an ACC Championship long jump of 8.22 meters (26-11.75) earlier this month in Tallahassee.

Several student-athletes will enter NCAA competition having set meet records at the recent ACC Championships, including Clemson’s Hester (20.13 in men’s 200 meters), Florida State’s Stefan Brits (8.22 meters in men’s long jump), NC State’s Megan Moye (4:11.91 in women’s 1500 meters), Florida State’s Der’Renae Freeman (record-tying 6.54 meters in women’s long jump) and Florida State’s Knibb (60.62 meters in women’s discus).

Hester and Wimbley are two of four 2016 ACC Outdoor Championships competing in Jacksonville. They are joined by men’s field MVP Filip Mihaljevic of Virginia (shot, discus) and women’s field MVP Emmonnie Henderson of Louisville (shot, discus).

Forty-five ACC student-athletes enter this year’s competition ranked among the nation’s top 10 in their events.

Four ACC men’s teams currently rank among the nation’s Top 20 with Virginia at No. 11, conference champion Virginia Tech at No. 13, Syracuse at No. 17 and Florida State at No. 19. Miami holds the No. 15 ranking on the women’s side, while ACC champion Florida State is 20th.

A total of 113 ACC student-athletes advanced from the East Preliminary round to the NCAA Championships in 2015. Four earned gold medals in their respective events – Notre Dame’s Molly Seidel (10,000 meters), Virginia Tech’s Irena Sediva (javelin), and Florida State’s Colleen Quigley (3000 steeplechase) and Kala Funderburk (400 meters).

Current ACC programs have collected 141 individual national championships in outdoor track and field (88 men’s gold medals, 53 women’s). The Florida State men placed atop the NCAA field in team scoring 2006, 2007 and 2008, and the Seminole women claimed the 1984 NCAA title.