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(Gulf Shores, Ala.) On the final day of the 2014 NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships, Louis Falland raced to second in the 3,000 meter steeplechase finals to give Cornerstone a top-30 team finish.
The day began with the marathon at 6 a.m. CU senior, Jared Courtright joined the field of 47 in brutal conditions for a 26.2 mile race. With the temperature at 68 and the humidity 100% at the start, eighteen men failed to finish. Courtright concluded his collegiate career finishing fifteenth in 2:52:00.30.
On the track Falland and Justin Kent of the University of British Colombia separated from the field in the 3,000 meter steeplechase in the early laps. Over the final 1200 meters, Kent pulled ahead. Falland finished ten seconds behind at the finish in 9:02.35.
Conference rivals, Indiana Tech won the meet with 105 point ahead of Wayland Baptist's 93. Cornerstone tied Aquinas and Evergreen State at 28th with eight points.
(Gulf Shores, Ala.) The day after coasting through the prelims in the 3,000 meter steeplechase, Louis Falland nearly jogged into the finals of the 5,000 meters on the second day of the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
Running in the second of two heats, Falland needed to finish in the top six or be one of four fastest runners not in the top six of either heat. The first heat started at a pedestrian pace and didn't get much faster. The winner ran 15:30.52 with sixth just six seconds behind.
The second heat started began much faster averaging just over 1:10 per lap. Falland positioned himself in around sixth place and waited. In the final laps, it was clear that ten men would qualify out of the second heat and Falland drifted further back in the pack, jogging to the finish in tenth place. His time of 15:17.65 was 23 seconds behind the winner, Sam Atkin of Lewis-Clark State.
"With the steeplechase finals nineteen hours away, there was absolutely no reason to run a second faster than necessary to advance," said CU men's distance coach, Nate Van Holten. "The real races are tomorrow."
(Gulf Shores, Ala.) Cornerstone senior, Louis Falland began his quest for four races in three days at the 2014 NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Gulf Shores, Alabama. First on the list was the 3,000 Meter Steeplechase semi-finals. Running in the second of two heats, Falland came in as the top seed. Needing only to finish in the top five of have one of the next four fastest times in order to advance, Louis raced patiently in the pack for most of the first six laps.
Knowing the fifth place finisher in the first heat ran 9:25, Falland cruised in for sixth, clocking 9:21.18 to advance on time to Saturday's final and saving his energy for the 5,000 meter semi-finals on Friday.
In the decathlon, sophomore, Deon Fox started the competition running 11.82 in the 100 meters. A 1.9 meters per second headwind slowed times and Fox finished twelfth in the field of sixteen. Next, in the long jump, Fox's first attempt was a foul and jarred a recent back injury. After a 19' 11 ½" second attempt, Deon had to withdraw from the competition to avoid further aggravating his back. "This is not the way you want to end the season," said coach Rod Wortley, "but to try and push through eight more events is not realistic. There was a real possibility his back wouldn't be ready to go, but it was nationals and Deon gets a lot of credit for making the effort."
Senior Louis Falland enters the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships with the fastest time in the country in the 3000 Meter Steeplechase so far this season. Falland ran a 9:02.28 at the Mt. SAC Relays back on April 17th this season. Justin Kent from British Columbia ran just .08 secons slower at the Beach Invitational on April 19th. Falland also ran the 4th fastest 5000 Meter Run this season although he was almost 50 second slower than the fastest time this year. Joining Falland at Nationals are Deon Fox (Decathlon), and Jared Courtright (Marathon). Deon Fox will lead the way starting his first competition tomorrow.
For the first time, the NAIA Men's and Women's Outdoor Track & Field National Championships will be offered on the NAIA Network. The event will be hosted by the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Sports Commission from May 22 – 24 at Mickey Miller Blackwell Stadium in Gulf Shores, Ala.There will be four cameras covering the action with live commentary. Click here to sign up.