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Ole Miss track qualifies three more for NCAAs

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Three more Rebels punched their ticket to Eugene on Friday, the middle day of the NCAA East Preliminary at Hodges Stadium on the University of North Florida campus.

Sophomore MJ Erb, senior Holland Sherrer and sophomore Lindsey Murray all claimed berths to the June 8-11 NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon, by placing top 12 among the 48 entries in their respective events in Jacksonville.

Two-thirds of the way through the meet, Ole Miss had qualified a total of four athletes through to Eugene and had another 15 men and women competing for bids on Saturday.

Saturday’s events were not completed by press time.

Erb, a native of Farmington, New York, earned his first NCAA Championships berth by running the fourth-fastest time in the 3000-meter steeplechase on Friday. His personal best of 8:39.11 moves him up to No. 2 in school history. He is the first Rebel to advance to the national meet in the steeplechase since Barnabas and Martin Kirui in 2010.

Facing the possibility of running his last race in a Rebel uniform, Sherrer was determined to advance for the second-straight season. He lowered his career-best time in the 800 meters to 1:47.13, which was sixth-fastest of the 24 quarterfinalists. The Deerfield, New Jersey, native maintains his position at No. 4 on the Ole Miss 800-meter charts. Fellow senior Dameon Morgan also ran a quality race, but he finished 16th with a time of 1:48.89 to conclude his Rebel career.

Rare company

For the women, Murray punched her ticket to Eugene by placing eighth in the pole vault with a clearance of 4.25m/13-11.25. She tied with nine other vaulters at that height and earned eighth place due to number of misses. The Harrisburg, Illinois, native becomes the second woman in school history to advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the pole vault. Neal Tisher made the national meet in 2010 and 2011.