Four Hoosiers advance to finals in Olympic Trials

Andy Bayer and John Jefferson (1,500 meters), Aarik Wilson (triple jump) and Tiffany Howard (shot put) advanced to to the finals of the Olympic Trials in their respective events. fFrom IU sports info:

EUGENE, Ore. – Four Hoosiers advanced through preliminary action on Thursday at the U.S. Olympic Trials. In front of a record crowd of 22,602, Andy Bayer and John Jefferson advanced to the semifinals in the 1,500, Aarik Wilson advanced to the triple jump finals and Tiffany Howard qualified for the shot put finals.

Bayer clocked a time of 3:42.14 to finish just .003 out of the top six in the first heat of the 1,500m, meaning he would need to advance on time. The reigning NCAA champion got through with the 23rd fastest out of 24 advancing times. Bayer advanced out of a tough heat with three of the top-seeded runners in his section. The heat went out slow, but Bayer was able to close well, running 56.5 in his last 400m and narrowly getting edged out of sixth place at the line by Jack Bolas by .003 seconds.

Jefferson clocked a time of 3:41.64 in heat two for ninth. His time was 15th out of the 24 advancing competitors. The IU alum who continues to train in Bloomington will be joined by Bayer in the semifinals, tomorrow at 7:25 p.m. ET.

Wilson hopped, skipped and jumped 16.66m (54-8) for third in the prelims. Wilson improved his mark on all three of his attempts. The defending Olympic Trials champion in the triple jump, Wilson will compete in the finals on Saturday at 7:40 p.m. ET.

Howard threw 17.04m (55-11) for seventh in the prelims of the shot put. The 2010 IU grad and current IU Athletics employee advances to the finals for the second time in her career and will compete in the finals tomorrow at 6:30 p.m. ET.