Hesselbjerg

INDIANAPOLIS – Five Eastern Kentucky University track and field student-athletes have qualified for the NCAA East Region Preliminary Championships to be held May 29-31 in Jacksonville, Fla.

Junior Ole Hesselbjerg enters the preliminary rounds ranked No. 1 in the East Region in the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase. The native of Charlottenlund, Denmark ran a 8:41.17 at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 19. Hesselbjerg was a first-team All-American in the steeplechase last spring after placing seventh in the event at the 2013 NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore.

Seniors Soufiane Bouchikhi and Wade Meddles qualified in the men’s 5,000 meters. Bouchikhi is currently ranked No. 3 in the region with a 13:45.92 that he ran at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 19. Meddles is right behind him at No. 4 with a 13:46.27 that he ran at the Stanford Relays on April 6. Bouchikhi was a second team All-American in the 5,000 meters in 2012, while Meddles was a second team All-American in the 5,000 meters in 2013.

On the women’s side, junior Ann Eason enters the preliminary rounds ranked No. 13 in the region in the 5,000 meters with a school-record 16:03.87 that she posted at the Stanford Relays on April 6. Eason, a native of Lexington, Ky. finished ninth in the 5,000 meters at the 2013 NCAA Championships, earning second team All-America honors.

Sophomore Cecile Chevillard, meanwhile, qualified in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, coming in at No. 37 with a 10:25.08 that she ran at the Virginia Challenge on May 11. This is the first time Chevillard has qualified for the NCAA preliminary rounds.

The top-12 finishers from each event at the regionals advance to the NCAA Championships to be held June 11-14 in Eugene, Ore.