GULF SHORES, Ala. -- The men's 3,200-meter relay team from Rocky Mountain College has advanced to the finals at the NAIA track and field outdoor championships.
The Battlin' Bear foursome of Fred Petsch, Johnny Barnes, Colton Wood and Shawn Peden ran a school-record time of 7:38.39 during Thursday night's prelims and were one of eight teams to make Friday night's finals.
Rocky placed fourth in its heat. The top two teams from each of the three heats made the finals, along with the next two relays with the best times.
"Every athlete and coach dreams of having everything click in the biggest race of the season," Rocky coach Alan King said. "It was nice to have that happen."
He said all four of his runners turned in season-best times.
The Bears are now in line to receive All-America status, which is awarded to the top eight finishers in each event at nationals.
In the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase prelims on Thursday night, Rocky's Ana Richter fell on the third lap and wound up with a time of 11:39.06.
She didn't qualify for the finals.