It's been a busy month for Dayton track and field's Mallory Barnes.
Three weeks ago, the standout thrower won the weight throw crown outright and helped the Flyers to their first-ever team title at the Atlantic 10 Championships. On Monday, the junior was selected as a provisional qualifier to compete in the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Indoor Track and Field Championships. And now she stands as the program’s first-ever All-American after a sixth-place finish on Friday at the University of Arkansas’ Randal Tyson Track Center.
Barnes hit the ground running during her first crack against the nation’s best throwers. Her first fling was a personal best and school record mark of 66-03.75, and that would turn out to be all she needed to make UD history, the finals and place sixth overall at the national meet.
“Mallory came to compete and she “pr'd” on her first throw,” UD head coach Adam Steinwachs said. “She's done a tremendous job all year, and this was a great way to cap it off. We're very proud of what she accomplished today, it's awesome.”
The University of Louisville’s D’Ana McCarthy let fly with a distance of 74-08.25 to win the national championship.
Just the second Dayton thrower – and third Flyer track athlete – to ever compete at the NCAA Championships, Barnes joins this year's elite company of UD All-Americans. Soccer star Mandi Back was also tabbed a First Team All-American after the 2009 women's soccer season, while volleyball's Lindsay Fletemier and football's James Vercammen were selected as honorable mention All-Americans in their respective sports.
Barnes' season, despite her tremendous accomplishment, is not over yet. She will be counted on to anchor UD's field team as the Flyers transition into their outdoor season, which will begin on March 20 at the University of Cincinnati’s Early Bird Relays.
As for the remainder of the NCAA Indoor Championships, ESPN360.com will stream portions of today’s events beginning at 9 p.m. EST and 7:10 p.m. EST on Saturday evening. ESPN2 will also air a 90-minute show at 1:30 p.m. EST on Wednesday, March 17. Additional information about the remaining events can be found at the NCAA’s Championship Central website.