USF junior Dayana Octavien is the lone Bull traveling to the Last Chance Meet this weekend at LSU for a shot at qualifying for the NCAA Championships.
“It feels good,” Octavien said. “I wish everyone else could go, but it’s a national meet and not very many schools are going to have a whole bunch of people.”
Octavien is currently No. 27 in the 20-pound weight throw on the list of provisional qualifiers. USF coach Greg Thiel said he believes Octavien must finish in the top 18 and throw 63 feet in order to advance to the national championships in Arkansas. Octavien owns the school record in the event. However, her best is only 61 feet, 7 3/4 inches.
“It has to be the one day I have perfect technique,” Octavien said.
One thing that should help Octavien is that she strives for elite competition because she believes it makes her perform better. She’s coming off a Conference USA title last weekend in the event, but more importantly, she doesn’t want to waste her limited opportunities.
“I’ve been working hard for this since my freshman year,” Octavien said. “Last year in the (outdoor) discus I almost went. I was a provisional qualifier, and my hammer (throw) my freshman year was great, so I want (a trip to nationals) now instead of next year.”
The rest of the USF track and field team will begin its outdoor season when it travels to Orlando this weekend for the UCF Invitational.
Most of the women’s team will have off after competing in the conference indoor championships, but the men will compete for the first time.