NAPERVILLE, Ill. –Juniors Brittany Bowman and Annalisa DeBari of the Tufts University women's track & field team enjoyed a successful day at the 2017 NCAA Division III Championships on Friday afternoon at North Central College. Bowman earned an All-American finish of eighth place in the 5,000 meter run and DeBari qualified for the final in the 60-meter hurdles.
Bowman was more than four seconds faster than her previous season-best time while recording her first track All-American effort. Her 17:06.47 time today was ahead of the 17:10.94 finish in the 5,000 meters on Boston University's banked track back on December 3. Converted to a 17:18.88, that time had her seeded 13th in the NCAA 5,000 on Saturday. She improved five spots to get All-American.
The top New England finisher in the 5K, Bowman's race continued a breakthrough 2016-17 season. She was an All-American at the NCAA Cross Country Championship this past November with an 18th-place finish. She also won the NCAA New England Regional in cross country.
DeBari ran a time of 8.87 seconds in the 60 hurdles today to finish second out of six in the first heat. Three heats in total were competed and DeBari's time was fifth out of 16 total entries. She is one of eight to move on to Saturday's final, which will start at 2:35 p.m.
This is just the second time in her career that DeBari has run under nine seconds in the event. She qualified with an 8.85 on March 4 that was 0.21 better than her previous season-best (9.06). Her 8.87 nearly matched that today and guaranteed her All-American honors (top eight).
The four seeds ahead of DeBari are first-heat winner Rachael Kraske from George Fox (8.69), third-heat winner Alison Smith from Redlands (8.71), second-heat winner Dallas Edge from Linfield (8.85) and Jordin Fender from Transylvania (8.83). DeBari and Southern Maine's Neka Dias, who took the seventh seed at 8.883, will represent New England in the 60h finals on Saturday.
With the one point Bowman scored in the 5,000 meters, Tufts is tied for 31st after one day at the NCAA meet.