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Rory Quiller advances to finals of pole vault at U.S. Olympic Trials

Former NCAA champion to compete in finals at 8:05 p.m. EST on Thursday

June 26, 2012

Rory Quiller advances to finals of pole vault at U.S. Olympic Trials

U.S. Olympic Trials Website

VESTAL, N.Y.—While Erik van Ingen is preparing for his first trip to the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials, another former Binghamton athlete is making the most of his second trip to the quadrennial event. Former NCAA pole vault champion Rory Quiller, who graduated from Binghamton in 2008, has advanced to the finals of the pole vault, which will be held on Thursday at 8:05 p.m. EST. That sets up a hour in which he and van Ingen will compete in their events 45 minutes apart.

Quiller was one of 11 vaulters to clear 17-4 1/2 in the preliminary round on Monday night. The top three finishers in Thursday’s finals will qualify for the U.S. Olympic Team, provided they have cleared the Olympic standard height of 18-9 1/4. The 2012 Summer Olympic Games will be held in London, England July 27-August 12. Four years ago, Quiller did not advance beyond the preliminary round.

“It’s great to have made it this far,” Quiller said. “The best part is that now I get to hang around later in the week and see Erik run his first race. It will be great to see he and (assistant coach) Annette (Acuff) again.”

van Ingen, a 2012 Binghamton graduate who will be competing in the 1,500 preliminaries on Thursday at 7:20 p.m. EST. It marks the first time in its history that Binghamton will have two of its former athletes competing at the U.S. Olympic Trials.

From 2004-08, Quiller was a five-time NCAA qualifier and three-time All-American at Binghamton. After placing second in the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships and fourth in the ensuing outdoor meet, he captured the 2008 NCAA indoor championship in his final collegiate meet. Four months later, he competed in the pole vault at the U.S. Olympic Trials, which were also held in Eugene, Oregon.

van Ingen and Quiller only spent one indoor track season together as teammates. After transferring from Canisius College in January 2008, van Ingen did not compete during that indoor season but still trained with the team. After Quiller’s national title performance capped off his career, van Ingen was able to compete and over the next four years, he won 11 individual America East titles, advanced to seven NCAA Championships and was a four-time All-American. His top performance was a fifth-place finish at the 2011 NCAA indoor meet.

In its history, Binghamton has had four of its athletes take part in the Olympics either before or after their collegiate careers. John Moreau competed in fencing for the U.S. in the 1984 games, which were held in Los Angeles, California. Chris Coleman took part in the 1992 and 1994 Winter Olympic Games in the bobsledding events.

Before arriving at Binghamton, Yun Qu competed for her native China in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. She was fourth in the 100 butterfly. Hui-Jue Cai, meanwhile, also swam for China in 1996 and earned a bronze medal in the 4x100 relay.

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