Freshman Bryce McNealy of the Oglethorpe men's track and field team qualified for the 400-meter dash competition at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships Saturday. It marked the third time that a member of the program qualified for the Division III national meet after Stephen Summerow and Nathan Briesemeister did so in 1992 and 1994, respectively.
McNealy won the 400-meter competition at the Falcon Finale in Montevallo, Alabama, on May 10, posting a season-best time of 48.06 seconds. It tied for the 14th-best mark of the season in all of Division III (counting only each individual's best performance), and the fifth-best in the South/Southeast region. With the owners of the top 20 national marks in each individual event earning their way into the national meet on the men's side, that effort put him into the field.
The Oglethorpe sprinter is the only freshman to make it into the national 400-meter field. He earned the individual SAA championship in the discipline, breaking an SAA Championships record with a time of 48.33 seconds. He also won the 400 meters at the Emory Invitational, and finished second in the event at the Victor Icebreaker Duals and third at the 'Southern Invitational and the Tiger Indoor Invitational.
McNealy will compete in the 400-meter preliminary competition Friday at 3:15 p.m. from the Spire Institute in Geneva, Ohio. If he qualifies for the finals, he'll compete again Saturday at 1:20 p.m.