BOZEMAN — Two Bozeman High School graduates will be representing Montana State on track and field’s biggest stage this week at the NCAA Outdoor Championships held at iconic Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.
Despite nursing a back injury all season, junior Lucy Corbett made her return to the field last month for the Big Sky Conference championship where she took first with a height of 6 feet for a new personal best and school record.
“I had only high jumped at one meet, so I was just hoping to go out and be able to compete with some of the top girls in our conference and just finally be able to jump again, so I was excited to be able to do that," Corbett said.
Corbett also won gold in a three-way tie at the NCAA West preliminary competition with a jump of 5 feet, 11.50 inches to punch her ticket to Eugene, becoming the first-ever female high jumper to advance to the NCAA Championships in Bobcat history.
“It’s really exciting," Corbett said. "I’m just grateful that I was able to make it there, and I’m really excited to go out and compete.”
To no surprise, Duncan Hamilton doubled the party by placing third at the NCAA prelims in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time 8:39.02 for a new personal best.
That time also move him up to second on Montana State's top 10 chart.
"The two people going to nationals are Bozeman High grads, which is pretty cool," Hamilton chuckled. "That way we’re able to represent Bozeman and represent Montana. I said I want somebody from Montana State at every national meet, and so we’re on our way to accomplishing that goal, and I think Montana State is definitely on the up and up. I think this will be a good stepping stone onto becoming a little bit higher -evel program.”
However, the national championships do present a new hurdle Hamilton has yet to face: prelims.
"I’ve never had prelims in steeples, so I guess the race strategy will be just kind of stick with that top group and try to make it into the top five in my heat, but honestly just making that final can be amazing just to know that I’m in the top 12 in the country," Hamilton said.
The NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships kick off Wednesday, June 9 where Hamilton will be competing in prelims for the 3,000-meter steeplechase on ESPNU/ESPN3.
Corbett doesn't compete in high jump until Saturday, June 12, which will also be broadcast on ESPNU/ESPN3.
The Treasure State will also be represented at the NCAA Championship by Glasgow native Benji Phillips, who now throws javelin for North Dakota State, and Billings Senior alum Christina Aragon, who runs collegiately at Stanford.