17 May 2023 Harding’s men qualify seven for nationals
SEARCY — A school-record seven Harding men received invitational to compete at the 2023 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships from May 25-27 in Pueblo, Colo.
The top eight finishers in each event at national earn First Team All-America honors, with places 9-12 earning Second Team honors.
Below are Harding’s qualifiers for outdoor nationals:
Yves Bilong, FR, Saint-Gilles, France
Bilong qualified sixth in the triple jump (15.74m or 51-7.75) … highest qualifying freshman in the event.
Harding’s lone All-American in the triple jump is Tquan Moore, who placed sixth in 1992 with a mark of 47 feet, 11.25 inches … Moore, who qualified for nationals in 1992, 1993 and 1994, is the only other Bison ever to compete in nationals in the triple jump.
Bilong is Harding’s school record holder in the triple jump, setting the mark at the 2023 GAC Championship and breaking the record of 15.15m (49-8.50) held by Bruce Baldwin since 1979.
Dakarai Bush, JR, Tatum, Texas
Bush will become the first Bison ever to compete in three individual events at the national meet … will be making his first appearance at outdoor nationals … earned First Team All-America with a sixth-place finish at 2023 indoors in the 60-meter hurdles and Second Team All-America with a ninth-place finish in the 400 meters.
He qualified 17th in the 200 meters (20.83), third in the 400 meters (46.00) and 14th in the 110-meter hurdles (13.97).
Harding has never had an outdoor All-American in any of Bush’s three events.
Bush is Harding’s school record holder in the 200 meters (20.83) and 400 meters (46.00) and ranks second in the 110-meter hurdles (13.97).
Kelmen de Carvalho, FR, Hechingen, Germany
De Carvalho qualified 14th in the decathlon (6,933) … was the second-highest freshman qualifier
Will become the first Bison ever to compete at nationals in the decathlon.
Harding’s school record holder in the decathlon (6,933), setting the mark at the 2023 GAC Championships.
Antiwain Jones, SO, Marianna, Arkansas
Jones qualified second in the high jump (2.18m or 7-1.75) … it will be his first national meet.
Will be Harding’s first national competitor in the high jump since Cameron Bienz placed 18th in 2018.
Harding has had three All-American in the outdoor high jump-national champion Steve Celsor (1975), Bill Baker (1988) and Te Howard (1989).
Jones is Harding’s school record holder in the high jump (7-1.75), breaking the former record of 6-11, jointly held by Celsor (1975) and Bienz (2018).
Tad Kirby, JR, Mason, Texas
Kirby qualified 18th in the 100-meter dash (10.30) … it will be his first national meet.
Will be Harding fourth national competitor in the 100 meters and first since Corey Bassett and Donatella Luckett qualified in 2014 … Bassett is Harding’s only All-American in the 100 meters, placing eighth in 10.75 seconds.
Kirby is Harding’s school record holder in the 100 meters, setting the mark at the 2023 GAC Championship and breaking the record of 10.37 set by Tony McCoy in 1984.
Vlad Malykhin, FR, Shostka, Ukraine
Malykhin qualified first in the pole vault (5.71m or 18-8.75) … it will be his first outdoor national meet … won the 2023 indoor national championship in the pole vault.
Harding has had seven All-Americans in the pole vault, including 2022 outdoor national champion Dorian Chaigneau.
Malykhin is Harding’s school record holder in the pole vault, breaking Chaigneau’s mark of 18-0.5 set last season at the NCAA meet.
Jonathan Wall, JR, Alvarado, Texas
Wall qualified 17th in the pole vault (5.02m or 16-5.5) … it will be his first outdoor national meet.
Wall ranks seventh on Harding’s career performers list in the pole vault.