Simmons reaches national mark to qualify for USATF Indoor Championships

Friday, February 10, 2017

FRISCO – UT Tyler senior Whitney Simmons qualified for the United States Track & Field Indoor Championships and extended her NCAA Division III lead with a Weight Throw of 19.77 meters on Friday at the Indoor Track & Field Classic at the Ford Center at The Star.

On the track, UT Tyler’s Conner Benson ran a 9:06 to finish 20th and Nathan Adams a 9:18 for 24 in the men’s 3,000 meter run and Logan Houser ran a 51.47 in the 400 for 26th. Complete results will be added once posted.

Simmons won the meet with the fifth best throw in NCAA Division III history and qualified for the USATF Indoor Championships which will be held from March 3-5 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She also won on Thursday with a throw of 19.34 meters and has now had PRs and in four straight meets and has wins at the University of Houston, Missouri Southern, Boston University and now two in Frisco. Her mark on Friday topped Yarixza Rivera of Sam Houston State who finished second with a throw of 18.09 meters and TCU’s Paola Miranda who finished third with a distance of 17.01 meters.

“Getting PRs four straight meets and getting two on back-to-back days is pretty mind blowing,” Simmons said. “I wasn’t confident that I was capable of competing at that kind of level with the weight and I wasn’t confident that I would be able to reach the distances that I’m hitting right now. All I can think is that after last year this is what I deserve. It’s what I’ve been working for and I’m crazy excited about it. All of my success, as always, goes to Chris (Stonestreet). He knows what cues to give me while I’m competing and we can fix whatever isn’t clicking right pretty easily during competition and we find what works for me. I’m insanely blessed with the best coach and with the best opportunities an athlete can have to achieve my highest goals. I can’t wait to make the memory of last season disappear forever.”  

The top NCAA DIII mark came from Robyn Jarocki who had a throw of 20.98 meters for Wisconsin-Oshkosh at the 2006 NCAA DIII Championships, while last year’s national champion threw 19.14 meters. A White Oak native, Simmons is a two-time All-America in the event with a runner-up finish in the 2014 and finishing fifth last season. She went on to win the 2016 NCAA DIII National Hammer Throw Championship in the Outdoor season.