JACKSONVILLE, FL — The University at Buffalo track and field program concluded their three-day trip to Jacksonville for the NCAA East Preliminary rounds on Saturday as the Bulls had several student-athletes in action on the day.
Buffalo senior and shot put specialist Devon Patterson, who battled back from shoulder surgery earlier this season to claim the MAC Championship, saw his storied collegiate career come to an end on Saturday afternoon as he placed 29th in a very competitive field of throwers with a distance of 17.57m. Patterson leaves the university as one of its most storied throwers both on and off the field, having claimed two outdoor MAC championships and serving as the schools SAAC president. Patterson was also awarded the 'ideal Bull' award just last month at the schools 'Victors' award show, awarded annually to a student-athlete who exemplifies outstanding character in competition, in the classroom and in the community.
Also competing on Saturday was Bulls high jumper Brandon Burke. The sophomore saw his season come to a finish as he placed 18th in an incredibly competitive field, leaping over the bar at a height of 2.16m (7'1"). Burke, who is just a sophomore, will look to come back stronger next year for the Bulls, but will have much to be proud of this season, including his individual championship in the high jump at this year's outdoor MAC Championships.
Buffalo jumper Shevaughn Allen also competed for the Bulls down in Jacksonville on Friday, placing 43rd in the 48 person field as he was able to get in just two legal jumps. Bulls fans have a lot to be excited about however, as Allen is just a freshman and after gaining invaluable experience at this level of competition, will come back even stronger for the Bulls in his sophomore campaign.
Up next for the Bulls, middle-distance specialist junior Leon Atkins will head to Austin, TX, to compete in the NCAA National Championships in the 800m race. Atkins punched his ticket to the National Championship last Thursday, making the qualifying mark with the 12th fastest time in the pool of 48 runners, crossing the line in 1:49.87. Atkins set history as he became just the first male athlete from the University at Buffalo to qualify for the NCAA Championships in the 800m event, which is slated to take place on Wednesday, June 5 at 8:14 pm. For more information on the 2019 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, please click here.