LA CROSSE, Wis. – With a time of 56.01 seconds freshman sprinter Hulerie McGuffie (Lynn, Mass.) became the first sprinter since the mid 1988 to qualify for the finals in the 400 meter dash Friday afternoon at the 2013 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championship meet on the campus of the University of Wisconsin of La Crosse.
McGuffie will look to compete for the Beacon's first national title in the 400 meter dash since All-American and championship record holder Genesia Eddins '89 won the event at the 1988 national championship meet. The finals are scheduled to start at approximately 4:40 p.m. EST tomorrow on the final day of the championship.
Her time of 56.01 seconds marked her second fastest time this outdoor season, as the freshman from Lynn entered this year's national championship meet ranked fourth overall in Division III. Leading the field was Wheaton College's (Mass.) Ashante Little who finished with a time of 55.85 seconds. After her it was Emory's Kaele Leonard and University of Redlands Vainayaki Sivaji. All three sprinters earned the automatic spot in tomorrow's finals as they recorded the top times in their respective heats.
McGuffie beat out her closest competitor by 13 hundredths of a second to earn the top time amongst the remaining qualifiers. Fans will be able to watch tomorrow's final live on NCAA.com.