GENEVA, Ohio – Day one of the 2019 NCAA Outdoor National Championships kicked off from the Spire Institute this afternoon, with MSOE's own Jerica Kotarak getting ready for the first of her two events this weekend. The quest for a second career All-American title began with the long jump, but tough competition knocked her out of the running in the first round of flights.
Long Jump – 16th out of 22
HOW IT HAPPENED
Kotarak was placed in the first of two opening rounds, which is not an ideal situation in a sport where you are setting the bar for those to come. Kotarak traveled a distance of 5.49 meters on her first jump, a good mark to shake out the nerves. Unfortunately, she failed to progress on her second, only registering 5.44 meters and putting the pressure on her last jump of the qualifying round. This could very well be attributed to the circumstances surrounding the conditions of the day, as wind affected her foot placement on the board, thus decreasing her performance.
She hit the best distance of the afternoon with her final attempt, going 5.57 meters to put her in sixth place. Some of the best athletes in the country were up in the next flight however, and quickly knocked her out of finals contention. When the dust settled, Kotarak wrapped up her long jump career with a 16th place finish. This beat her entry seed ranking of 18th, which was impressive as she hadn't competed in the event since the NACC Outdoor Conference Championships back on May 3-4.
Kotarak will have one last shot to add another gold star to her already shiny resume on Saturday, competing in the triple jump on the final day of competition. Live stats will be available on the women's track and field schedule page.