June 8, 2017
EUGENE, Ore. - Allie Ostrander took third in the second heat of the 3,000m steeplechase semifinal to secure her spot in the final while Sadi Henderson came up just short of advancing out of the 800m semifinal Thursday evening at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Ore., at Hayward Field. Ostrander ran a 9:50.55 to improve her spot as the No. 2 steepler in school history while Henderson clocked a 2:04.95 to earn Second Team All-America honors.
Ostrander - who is set to compete in both the 3,000m steeplechase and 5,000m on Saturday - is the second women's athlete to ever double in the two events since the championships switched over to the alternating gender schedule in 2015.
The steeplechase will go off at 3:54 p.m. (PT) and the 5k will follow shortly after at 5:25 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.
"I think that there are a lot of girls who have run faster times towards the end of the season," Ostrander said in commenting on the upcoming 3,000m steeplechase final. "After seeing the prelims it looks like everyone is going to have a lot to give for the final, so I'm excited to duke it out."
The Kenai, Alaska, native stuck to the hip of the Penn State's Tori Gerlach for the majority of the race and matched her stride-for-stride as the pack gradually strung out with a kilometer to go. Knowing that a top-five finish in the heat was all that was necessary, Ostrander safely crossed the finish line in third to cement her spot in the final.
"She did a nice job of following the plan and getting through to the next round," head coach Corey Ihmels said. "She looked really good out there, so we're excited for Saturday."
Henderson drew arguably the fastest and deepest 800m heat of the day. It went out hard and the redshirt sophomore stuck with the pack near the rail for the first 600 meters, but was unable to make the necessary move to draw closer to the leaders. She fully exerted to try to make up the ground in the last 100 meters, but the deficit was too much too overcome and resulted in a fifth-place finish in the heat.
The time was the eighth-fastest of the day and gave the native of Corvallis, Mont., the second All-America honor of her career.
"It was the deepest heat of all of them, and I was going to have to be really smart to advance," Henderson explained after the race. "I knew I was going to have to be really patient to make my move, and unfortunately when I wanted to make my move I was pretty blocked in and wasn't able to find a gap."
Despite today's result, Henderson still has been able to set the benchmark for Bronco 800m runners in her 2017 campaign. She set the indoor and outdoor 800m school records and was the first Boise State runner to ever pick up indoor and outdoor 800m All-America honors.
"I've learned not to put any limits on myself and just kind of go with it, because every limit I've put on myself I've been able to break," Henderson reflected after the race.
"Sadi has been great all year long - this race definitely doesn't define her season" Ihmels added. "She put herself in great position to qualify, but came up just short down the stretch. We can't wait to see what else lies ahead for her in the next two years."
Ostrander and freshman Clare O'Brien (5,000m) will both compete Saturday on what will be the final day of the championships. Tune in to ESPN to watch both races.