Pujats, Syversen Earn Bids to NCAA Indoor Championships
March 7, 2011
The NCAA Indoor Championships will be hosted by Texas A&M in College Station, Texas, beginning Friday, March 11. The meet will be held at the Gilliam Indoor Track and Field Complex. ESPN3 will webstream the event on Friday, March 11 from 4-8:40 p.m. and Saturday, March 12 from 4-7:50 p.m. The remainder of the event will be streamed live on NCAA.com.
Pujats, the two-time C-USA Indoor champion in the pole vault, got a bid on the merits of his school-record 5.36m (17' 7.00") pole vault at the Rod McCravy Memorial Meet in Lexington, Ky., on Jan. 26. The Riga, Latvia, native won six straight meets that culminated in his third C-USA pole vaulting title overall.
Pujats will be seeded 16th in the vault and will be Conference USA's lone representative in the event at the NCAA Championships.
This is not Pujats' first foray into the national scene. He was an NCAA Outdoor Regional qualifier last season. He finished 16th with a school outdoor-record 5.20m (17' 0.75") mark.
Syversen, from Sarpsborg, Norway, was a last minute qualifier after his personal-best 21.14m (69' 4.25") toss at the LSU Last Chance placed him at ninth in the country. Syversen will give Memphis a man in the NCAA weight throw championships for the third year in a row after Steffen Nerdal represented the U of M in 2009 and 2010.
Syversen will face a familiar foe in Southern Illinois' J.C. Lambert; the two squared off earlier this season at the McCravy Memorial, with Lambert besting Syversen by less than four feet.
Syversen is a veteran on the national scene; he's a two-time NCAA Regional qualifier in two events. In 2008, Syversen finished 18th at the NCAA Mid-East Regional with a 16.42m (53' 10.50") shot, and followed that up in the weight throw last year with a 59.98m (193' 6") hammer throw.
Pujats will compete first for the U of M, with the pole vault scheduled to be competed at 4:30 p.m. (CT). Syversen will compete in the last field event, scheduled to begin at 5:00 p.m., Saturday.