MOUNT PLEASANT – Senior Ryan McCullough and freshman Milica Kulidzan are set to represent Central Michigan track and field at the highest level this week at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, beginning Wednesday.
The meet, hosted by Drake University at Drake Stadium, will begin Wednesday and conclude on Saturday. Live results will be available all week and streaming video will be available on NCAA.com on Wednesday and on ESPN3.com Thursday through Saturday. Saturday's events will be carried on ESPNU from noon to 2 p.m.
Kulidzan will begin competition in the javelin Wednesday at 3:40 p.m. EST. She will get three throws in the first flight of two. The nine throwers who record the best marks between both heats will advance to a three-throw final.
Kulidzan, ranked 18th overall with a school-record mark of 154-10, will be the second-ranked of four Mid-American Conference women javelin throwers competing on Wednesday. Victoria Paterra of Miami (OH) is ranked just one spot higher at 155-03.75.
McCullough will compete in the hammer throw Friday at 3 p.m. EST. He will take three throws in the second flight of two. Like the javelin, the nine throwers with the best marks between both heats will advance to a three-throw final.
McCullough is ranked 16th in the 23-thrower field with a mark of 207-03, and is ranked second among MAC student-athletes in the event. McCullough, who became the MAC Champion in the hammer throw on May 11, will look to reclaim the top MAC ranking from 14th-ranked Eric Hubbard of Akron, who recorded a mark of 207-04.75 at the East Prelims two weeks ago. McCullough has thrown as far as 210-07 this season, which earned him MAC Champion and MAC Outstanding Field Performer honors and a school record at the MAC Championships.
With Kulidzan and McCullough the Chippewas are well-represented at the NCAA Championships. Central Michigan is one of just three MAC institutions to send both a male and a female student-athlete to the meet, and is one of just five to send multiple competitors, regardless of gender.
Milica Kulidzan Notes
Kulidzan will attempt to become CMU's second All-American in the women's javelin, joining Karen Wilkinson in 1991 … Kulidzan is the first CMU women's student-athlete to qualify for the outdoor national championships since sprinter Najah Floyd and jumper Jackie Smart did so in 2007 … She becomes the first student-athlete from the women's team to qualify for either the indoor or outdoor championships since high jumper Erika Schroll in 2010 at the indoor championships.
Ryan McCullough Notes
McCullough is building on a growing tradition of CMU men's throwers. Dating back to the 2009 outdoor season and including the indoor championships, a total of seven men's throwers have qualified for six of the seven national championships with three All-American honors … McCullough will attempt to become the first men's hammer throw All-American in school history … He will attempt to become the first MAC Outstanding Performer/All-American at CMU since Jeff Powers in 2007, and the third overall (Bruno Pauletto in 1978).