June 10, 2009
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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Tara Erdmann goes for national glory on Thursday as she competes with the top 26 runners from across the nation in the 10,000m at the 2009 NCAA Outdoor Track Championships, which begin today in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Erdmann is only the second female in LMU track history to qualify for the national championships and the first ever to qualify for two national championships in the same school year, having represented the Lions at the NCAA Cross Country Championships this past fall.
Erdmann (Tucson, AZ) qualified for the nationals in the 10,000m by virtue of her school-record time of 34:29.41 on May 2 at the Peyton Jordan Cardinal Invitational at Stanford. That time was good enough for a provisional qualification for the NCAA Nationals. When the participants were announced last week, 26 runners had been selected, with Erdmann's time putting her 23rd on the list.
"I am very happy for Tara. It has been a long season but she has worked hard and she deserves this," Head Coach Scott Guerrero said. "Her goal all season long has been to make it to the NCAA meet so it is fun to see her get there. It is also a bit of history for our program and something that she should be proud of."
Erdmann is the first LMU runner to compete at the NCAA Outdoor Track National Championships since Laura Mickelson ran in the 5000m in 2006. Erdmann is also the first Lion to feature at the national level in the 10,000m. As a high schooler, she placed seventh in the mile at the 2007 Nike Outdoor Nationals.
This will be the sophomore's first appearance at the national championships for track but not her first race at the national level. This past fall, she competed in the NCAA Cross Country National Championships, placing 78th out of 252 runners.
The 10,000m final will be contested at 8:55 p.m. Central Daylight Time on Thursday, June 11. Fans can follow the action live via live video or results by clicking on the links at the top of this page.
- GO LIONS -