PORTSMOUTH — Straight out of the blocks of his first-ever national championship preliminary, Shawnee State senior harrier Hunter Hoover posted a time that allowed the distance runner to qualify for the NAIA’s 3,000-meter run finals.
Hoover’s time of 8:54.71 — on Thursday — was good enough for fourth in his heat and 12th overall from a time standpoint, allowing the senior to advance to Saturday’s championship.
In running his 8:54.71, Hoover outran Rocky Mountain (Colo.)’s Jackson Wilson by a scant .27 (two-tenths and seven one-hundreths of a second) for the fourth and final qualifying position in Heat 1 — which proved to be huge as that margin was the difference in Hoover qualifying for the finals and being eliminated from the event entirely.
In qualifying for the finals, Hoover joined past elite indoor SSU runners such as Brooke Smith, Seth Farmer and Jessica Price in qualifying for the NAIA National Championships in an individual event.
Farmer won the NAIA National Championship in the one mile in 2019.
Hoover will race in Saturday afternoon’s NAIA 3,000m run National Championship — with race time starting at 3:30 p.m. (ET) from Yankton, S.D.
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