Point Park's Shields No. 1 in the 1,000 M prelims to lead Pioneers at NAIAs
March 3, 2017 at 10:00 p.m. ET
Anna Shields in her prelim heat at the NAIA indoor national championships Friday. Photo by Chris Bauman.
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. -- Anna Shields led the Point Park University participants in the preliminaries of the NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships Thursday and Friday from Johnson City, Tenn.
Shields, a sophomore from Torrington, Conn., won the preliminary of the 1,000 meters and will be the top seed in the finals on Saturday at 2:25 p.m. She ran a time of 2:52 in Friday's prelim, which was just off her NAIA No. 1-ranked time in the event from the regular season.
Shields will also take a top placement into the finals of the mile, which is scheduled for Saturday at 12:25 p.m. Her time of 4:49 from earlier this year is ranked first in the nation for the event, which did not have a prelim at nationals but will instead go right to the finals.
Point Park has several athletes competing at the NAIA indoor national meet, which began Thursday. The Pioneers had their distance medley relay team run in the prelims on Thursday night. Point Park had a time of 12 minutes, 22 seconds with the team of Katie Guarnaccia (1,200), Olukemi Olugbakinro (400), Taylor Celich (800) and Anna Shields (1,600). That put the Pioneers 10th in the nation and two spots shy of advancing to the finals.
Guarnaccia started things off for the Pioneers by running in the 5,000 meters prelims on Thursday afternoon. Competing for her sixth time at an NAIA national championship event and her second time in NAIA indoor track nationals, the junior from North Allegheny High School placed 17th in the nation with a time of 18:09. The top 12 advaned to the finals.
Opening up their first competition of the weekend on Saturday will be Point Park's men's triple jump national qualifiers, Jryi Davis and Tyler Carter. The prelims and the finals of the triple jump are both scheduled for Saturday with a 1:30 p.m. start time.
The top eight finishers in each event earn NAIA indoor All-American honors. By making the finals as one of eight finalists in the 1,000 M, Shields has already achieved NAIA All-American status for that event. It is the first NAIA All-American honor for an athlete from Point Park track, which is in its third year as a program.