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IU athletes to vie for NCAA titles

Three Fort Wayne-area athletes to begin competition today

Thursday, June 6, 2013 - 2:26 am

A trio of Fort Wayne-area track and field athletes will be competing for NCAA Championships beginning today in Eugene, Ore. All three will be representing Indiana University.

The headliner is 2008 Leo graduate Andy Bayer who will be attempting to successfully defend his national title in the 1,500 meters. In one of last year’s most dramatic races, Bayer out-dove Miles Batty of BYU to win in 3 minutes, 43.82 seconds. Batty finished in 3:43.83.

Also competing in a distance event for the Hoosiers is 2009 Carroll graduate Robby (Kleber) Nierman, who will be racing in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. It will be Nierman’s first NCAA track championship meet but he helped lead the Hoosiers to the 2012 NCAA Cross Country finals.

Another Leo graduate, Sophie Gutermuth (2011), will be representing the Hoosiers in the pole vault.

Nierman hits the track first, racing in the semi-finals tonight at 9:45 p.m. Fort Wayne time. Nierman qualified for the NCAA meet with a time of 8:46 at the East Preliminary Round in Greensboro, N.C. His time ranks him No. 10 all-time in school history. If Nierman advances to the finals he will compete for the national championship on Friday at 8:40 Fort Wayne time.

Bayer races in the 1,500 preliminaries at 7:45 Thursday Fort Wayne time. His final is scheduled for Saturday at 5:31 p.m. Fort Wayne time.

Gutermuth competes at 6:15 p.m. Fort Wayne time. She qualified for the NCAA meet by clearing 13-feet, 5.25 inches at the East Preliminary Round.

The meet will be webcast on PAC-12.com and televised on ESPNU and ESPN3.