Today: Feb 24, 2024

SCSU track star qualifies for Olympics

Southernctowls.com | Photo Courtesy
Lumax was named Men’s Track of the Year in the East Region for Division II.

PAT LONGOBARDISports Writer

Going into his senior season, Selasi Lumax has had the experience on the track, but that desire to do more is always a thought in the back of your head in the final go-around.

For the senior, this was something he brought into this past indoor season for the No. 4-nationally ranked SCSU men’s indoor track and field team.

Lumax, from Somerset, N.J., had been determined and looking to improve on consistent top performances.

His expectations were set high all season as he was the top runner in the 800 meters in Division II and among all three collegiate levels.

One highlight of his season was qualifying for the 2012 United States Olympic trials during his victory in the 800 meters event at the New England Championships with a time of 1:47.34. The 2012 Olympic Trials will take place from June 22-July 1.

Lumax said this season was all about improving every day to get to that point.

“It was definitely a great feeling [to qualify],” he said. “It was a really good feeling. I keep trying to improve my time. Everybody was pretty excited and happy for me.”

SCSU head coach John Wallin, in his second season, said Lumax has worked really hard this season to continue to build on his previous success.

“He ran tremendous [at the New England meet],” he said. “He helped put the program on the map and he was one of the highlights of Division II. That would have won the Division I meet. He ranked in the top 10 in the U.S. We were certainly excited. We knew that he could do it and we waited for the opportunity. He works hard and he prepares to have great success.”

“We knew he would run a fast race [at New England Championships]. We were waiting in anticipation [for a good finish]. We saw that the time was a New England Championships record, and we knew it was something special. It was a great competition and he is a great guy.”

Lumax, the Men’s Track Athlete of the Year for Division II East Region, was one of eight members from the Owls team that went to the Division II National Championships in Mankato, Minn. The Owls came in third place overall at the championship meet for the program’s best indoor finish in school history.

Lumax competed in three events at the meet.

He finished in third place in the 800 meters with a time of 1:52.61.

The DMR team of Lumax, Logan Sharpe, Brian Robbins and Josh Perry came in second in 9:55.34 which returned three from last year’s team, including Lumax.

The 4×400 relay team of Stenson Jean-Baptiste, Twayne Forth, Lumax and Sharpe finished in third (3:15.25), a team that also returned three athletes from last season.

Lumax said he had some high expectations going into the national championship meet.

“Preliminaries were all right [800 meters],” he said. “I made it through pretty easily. The DMR did really well. In the 800 final, I definitely disappeared.”

“In every event, you expect to win-the DMR [distance medley relay], 800 and the 4×4. There was a little pressure and we just did not execute.”

“It wasn’t about time. It was all about getting the win and getting to the front to get the win. It didn’t end up like that. I closed hard and started to the front to get the win. I was close up at the end, but two kids were I guess better than me.”

“I realized when I am in the faster races to do better not just to win. We just slipped. It was a great nationals for the team, which is always good.”

Lumax and the Owls opened the outdoor portion of the season this past weekend and will next compete in the Roadrunner Invitational and the Sam Howell Invitational from April 6-7.

Wallin said Lumax left his mark in many events this season and will be motivated going into the outdoor season.

“He had an incredible [national] championships,” Wallin said. “His only real blemish was the loss in the 800. He had a great preliminaries. His leg put his team in the lead in the DMR. In the 4×400, he got us back in the race. The one blemish hurts the most [for him].”

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