Duncan Hamilton

Montana State's Duncan Hamilton broke the school record in 8:31.99 during his heat of the men's steeplechase at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships June 9, 2021. Hamilton qualified to run in the finals Friday.

EUGENE, Ore. — Montana State's Duncan Hamilton advanced to the men's steeplechase finals at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Wednesday.

Hamilton, a Bozeman native, jumped out to an early lead and led for the first five laps of the 3,000-meter race before holding on for a fourth-place finish to automatically qualify for Friday's finals.

His time of 8 minutes, 31.99 seconds is a new school record, a personal best and an Olympic Trials qualifying time.

The men's steeplechase final is scheduled for 6:24 p.m. (MDT) on Friday from Hayward Field.

Hamilton is Montana State's 15th male athlete to become an All-American in outdoor track and field. He's also the sixth Bobcat to earn All-America honors in both the indoor and outdoor seasons.

"It's definitely a little bit of pressure release since I met most of my goals," Hamilton said in an MSU press release. "Now I've just got to see where I'm at among the top of the country.

"Pretty much every race I've been able to stick with the top group. I think a podium finish is definitely in my reach."

Glasgow's Benji Phillips also competed for North Dakota State in the men's javelin. He finished eighth with his best throw of 243 feet, 3 inches (71.4 meters) on his fifth attempt.

His finish earns Phillips first-team All-American honors and concludes a season in which he was the Summit League champion.

The NDSU track and field Twitter account also announced after the finish that Phillips was named the men's track and field NCAA Elite 90 winner. The award is given to the competitor with the highest cumulative GPA competing at the finals site. 

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