Belo, Rainey Set to Open NCAA East Preliminary Round

NCAA East Preliminary Round preview graphic with Brianna Belo and Matthew Rainey

WEATHER UPDATE: The NCAA released a revised schedule for the East Preliminary meet due to forecasted weather. Stay tuned to and for additional updates as the weekend progresses.

WASHINGTON - Senior Brianna Belo and junior Matthew Rainey will continue their 2018 outdoor track & field campaigns this week as they travel to Tampa, Fla., for the NCAA Championships East Preliminary Round, hosted by the University of South Florida from May 24-26.

This is the first time since 2013 that the AU track & field program has had two qualifiers into the preliminary round and the first time that both a male and female student-athlete qualified in the same season. Qualification for the meet is based on the top-48 ranked individuals and top-24 relays in each event within the east region. The top 12 finishers in each event out of both the east and west preliminary rounds will advance to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore., on June 6-9.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:  A live stream of the East Preliminary Round will be available on with a FloPro subscription.


2011 Erin Koch
Octavia Rinehardt
1500m Run
5000m Run
4:30.99 (19th)
17:01.02 (31st)
2013 Mark Allen
Mark Leininger
5000m Run
10,000m Run
14:50.27 (41st)
30:21.81 (23rd)
2015 Joshua Ellis 3,000m Steeple 8:58.69 (27th)
2016 Brendan Johnson 10,000m Run 31:05.55 (35th)


For senior Brianna Belo, this weekend is only the latest in what has been a record-breaking career at American University. Since her very first race in the red, white, and blue in 2015, Belo has re-written the mid-distance record books with 20 school record performances across six events during the indoor and outdoor seasons. Her latest of these came earlier this season when she broke her own 800-meter run record with a 2:07.52 finish at the Colonial Relays. She nearly broke that record again during the Patriot League Outdoor Championships where she cruised to her third conference title with a 2:07.79 crossing.

Belo enters the weekend ranked 41st in the field for the east region. She will open the meet on Thursday at 4:35 p.m. ET in the first round of the women's 800m. The top three finishers from each heat and next six times will then advance to the quarterfinal on Friday where they will fight for a coveted spot in the top-12 and a chance to compete at the NCAA Championship meet in Eugene, Ore., at the historic Hayward Field.

Junior Matthew Rainey became the sixth-fastest 1500-meter performer in program history this season with his personal record (PR) performance of 3:45.70 during the George Mason Spring Invitational. The 47th-ranked performer in the field, he will open in the first round of the 1500m at 1:30 p.m. ET on Thursday. The top-five finishers from each heat and the next four times will advance to the quarterfinal at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday where the top-12 finishers will advance to Eugene.

Belo and Rainey are among the 31 qualifiers into the NCAA East Prelim from the Patriot League. Rainey will join Boston University's Paul Luevano and Army West Point's Keagan Smith in the men's 1500m field while Belo will take the line against Zoe Matherne from Holy Cross.

For the latest on AU Track & Field, stay tuned to and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.