PUEBLO, Colo. — The third time didn’t prove to be the charm for Eastern New Mexico University’s Daniel Draper.
Draper, a senior from Moriarty, competing in his third consecutive NCAA Division II national outdoor track and field championship in men’s javelin, finished 13th out of 16 contestants with a throw of 196 feet, 9 inches.
Sophomore Justin Shirk of Bloomsburg (Pa.), ranked sixth going into the meet, won the competition with a top throw of 235 feet, 11 inches. Pittsburg State senior Mike Beeler came in second at an even 233 feet.
Defending champion Nick Howe of UC San Diego finished fifth this time at 223-11, just more than seven feet short of his winning effort last year of 231-3.
Draper, the ENMU school record-holder in the event at 211-7 set last year, had a personal best of 210-5 this spring. He would have needed something approachng the former distance to sneak into the top eight and score.
Saturday’s throw was his best at the national level. He went 187 feet for 11th place as a sophomore and threw 190 feet last year to place 13th.
ENMU’s other entry, junior Isaiah Samoei, finished eighth on Thursday night in the men’s 10,000 with a time of 31 minutes, 47 seconds, good for one team point and All-American status.