Stanford women add three to NCAA track and field contingent


Stanford freshman Olivia Baker earned passage to the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships and was among three Cardinal women to do so Friday.

Baker, in her first season as an 800-meter specialist, was among nine Stanford athletes to compete on the second day of the three-day NCAA West Prelims at Myers Stadium in Austin, Texas. Junior 800 runner Claudia Saunders and sophomore discus thrower Valarie Allman also advanced.

They were the first Stanford woman to earn NCAA spots. They join freshman decathlete Harrison Williams among Stanford athletes who have advanced.

The top 12 in each event advance to nationals June 10-13 in Eugene, Oregon, joining 12 other qualifiers from the NCAA East Prelims in Jacksonville, Florida.

Saunders, the 2014 NCAA outdoor runner-up, ran the third-fastest time of the day, clocking 2:03.75. Baker ran 2:04.55, qualifying in the eighth spot.

Allman had her best throw (177-10) on the last of her three tries. After two rounds, Allman was in 36th place with a 155-2, followed by a foul. But Allman rallied and advanced to her second NCAA Championship meet.

Rebecca Hammar, a senior with the 12th-best qualifying mark coming into the meet, had to withdraw after suffering an injury.

Kristyn Williams, a junior, came close, finishing 15th spot – three away from advancing – in the 400, running 53.40.

Junior 400 hurdler Jackson Shumway also finished one round from nationals, placing 22nd overall in 52.81.

Stanford has its biggest day ahead, sending 15 individuals to action Saturday, plus its women's 1,600 relay team.

— David Kiefer/Stanford Athletics

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