PITTSBURG, Kansas – After the first day of the 2016 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships, juniors John Braga (North Reading, Mass.) and captain Carly Muscaro(Ashland, Mass.) of the Merrimack College men’s and #22 women’s track & field teams have set themselves up well for competition Saturday, as Braga sits eighth in the heptathlon while Muscaro will be the second seed in the 400m final.
Event: 2016 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships – Day 1
Competitors: Braga (8th/16 Heptathlon – 3 events remaining) | Muscaro (2nd – 400m Prelims)
Location: Pittsburg State University | Pittsburg, Kansas
How It Happened
Braga got the day started early, competing in the 60m dash, long jump, shot put, and high jump on Friday prior to all other events. The junior standout began competition with a personal record in the 60m dash, posting a sixth-place finish with a time of 7.18. He followed that up with a fourth-place finish in the long jump (7.06m), but then slipped with a 14th-place finish in the shot put (10.52m). Braga finished his first day of competition strong with a fifth-place finish in the high jump, leaping 2.00m. The North Reading, Massachusetts native sits in eighth-place in the field of 16 heading into Saturday with the 60m dash, pole vault, and 1000m events remaining.
Muscaro advances to the 400m final at Nationals for the fifth straight season and second consecutive year in indoor after posting the second-fastest time in the preliminaries (53.63) on Friday to move on to the championship race with the top-eight qualifiers. The senior was just nearly edged out by Shorter University senior Ayana Walker for the top seed in Saturday’s finals with a time of 53.41. Muscaro is no stranger to Walker as the two met at last year’s Nationals, with Muscaro beating Walker for first in the preliminaries, followed the next day by Walker edging Muscaro for the national crown.
Muscaro goes for her second attempt at the national indoor title in the 400m on Saturday in her third year at Merrimack. She has finished as the runner-up in her previous two appearances at the NCAA Indoor Championships, as well as two runner-up finishes in both appearances to the 400m finals of the Outdoor Championships. Muscaro, who holds the fastest time in the 400m this season at 52.43, which ranks as the third-fastest in Division history, will look to exact revenge and bring home her first national title on Saturday.
Braga finished competition on Saturday with the 60m hurdles at 10:15 a.m., the pole vault at 11 a.m. and the 1000m at 1 p.m. Current and live results for the heptathlon can be found here. Muscaro will race in the 400m final Saturday at 6:25 p.m., while the women’s 4x400m relay will run at 8:15 p.m., with results for both of those events available here. All of Saturday’s events can be streamed live online at ncaa.com/liveschedule.