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USD’s Joe Lynch jumps into the NCAA Nationals with a personal best

SIOUX FALLS, SD (Dakota News Now) – Five South Dakota Coyotes track and field athletes have had their tickets stamped to go to Eugene, Oregon and compete in the NCAA Outdoor Championships.

That includes Sioux Falls native Joe Lynch. The former O’Gorman Knight has quickly raised the bar with his high jumps, including a performance he won’t forget last week in the NCAA West Regional.

Lynch jumped a personal record of over five feet to get that ticket for Eugene. That’s a full inch higher than his previous record, and even more impressive, he did it on his first attempt at that height

Lynch says he didn’t even have to look to see if the beam had held up because he felt it was clear all the way down. He says that’s encouraging to know as he hopes to make a splash in the national championships.

He is the first Coyote to compete at the national level in the high jump since Zack Anderson made it in 2021.

South Dakota Track and Field Director Lucky Huber says Lynch has improved quickly since transferring to Vermillion last year, and he is excited to see what he can do to compete with the best in the country.

The first day of the NCAA Championships begins on Wednesday. Lynch will join four other Coyotes in Oregon, including three pole vaulters and Salem resident Jacy Pulse, who runs the 400-meter hurdles.

“I feel pretty good. I feel like my jump at 7′1 1/2″ was good enough to clear higher bars than 7′1 1/2″. So I really feel like I can hit another PR at Nationals, and maybe sneak in a First Team All-American,” Lynch said.

“It was very nice to reach this level so quickly, but it was also very neat. He just hit it, and boom, he jumped right over it, and you thought, ‘Wow, that was a hell of a jump.’ So it’s really fun to see, and I’m curious to see when he can maybe do a few more bars in Eugene, and who knows what will happen,” Huber said.

The first day of the NCAA Championships begins on Wednesday.

The four other Coyotes joining Lynch include three pole vaulters and Salem native Jacy Pulse who runs in the 400-meter hurdles.

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