May 27, 2006
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Junior All-American Thomas Chamney (Tipperary, Ireland/St. Columba’s) pulled away down the stretch to win the 800-meter run at the NCAA Mideast Regional, which wrapped up Saturday night in Knoxville, Tenn. Chamney hit the tape in 1:48.86, edging out Missouri’s Marcus Mayes (1:49.02) and hometown favorite Yarrick Kincaid of Tennessee (1:49.03) to become Notre Dame’s first male 800-meter NCAA qualifier since Tim Kober and Phil Mishka in 2000 (neither advanced out of their preliminary heat).
In the team standings, the Notre Dame women scored all 19 of their points during Friday’s first session of the meet and finished 12th overall. LSU won the team title with 95.5 points. On the men’s side, the Irish recorded all 10.5 of their points on Saturday (10 from Chamney) and wound up 27th on the team ladder. LSU also won the men’s Mideast Regional title with 71 points.
Chamney, who earned his first career All-America citation with a sixth-place finish in the 800 meters at this year’s NCAA Indoor Championships, will look to be Notre Dame’s first outdoor 800-meter All-American in 40 years (Pete Farrell in 1966). Prior to this weekend’s meet, Chamney’s best Mideast Regional finish in the 800-meter run had been a 14th-place showing in 2004 (he didn’t advance out of qualifying in his freshman year of 2003).
While he didn’t advance to this year’s NCAA Championships, freshman Blair Majcina (Mokena, Ill./Lincoln-Way East) did add to the Irish scoring total with a tie for eighth place (good for a half-point) in the high jump. In his first career Mideast Regional appearance, Majcina was one of five athletes to clear the bar at 6-9 (2.06 meters), although two of the five made it on their first attempt, allowing them to break out of the tie. Majcina and Akron’s Ryan Jones both hit the mark on their second try, while Wisconsin’s Zach McCollum was the odd man out, needing all three attempts to reach 2.06 meters and thus he was eliminated from the tie (and the team scoring column).
Per NCAA rules, the top five finishers in each event at this weekend’s regional automatically gain entry to the NCAA Championships, while a handful of “at-large” berths also will be available and announced at a later date. At this point, six Notre Dame track & field athletes have booked their spot in the NCAA finals:
— ND —