Rowan senior Bobby Cooks ran the fastest high hurdles time in NCAA Division 3 Friday with an 8.01 in the trials of the 15th annual All-Atlantic Region Indoor Track and Field Championships at Glazer Fieldhouse on the campus of Ithaca (N.Y.) College.
Cooks leads all qualifiers into the finals, scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Saturday. His time is just 3-100th of a second off the Rowan school record of 7.98, set last year by David Benjamin while racing Cooks at last year’s indoor nationals. Benjamin won that race while Cooks, then racing for Aurora College in Illinois, was sixth.
Cooks shattered the meet record of 8.17 set in 2013 by Davi Kastner of RPI. His time is only 5-100ths of a second off the fieldhouse record of 7.96, set by Amadou Gueye of Syracuse in 2010.
Cooks’ previous best time for Rowan was an 8.04 in the final of the New Jersey Athletic Conference meet at the Ocean Breeze facility earlier this month.
His overall PR is a 7.90 in the trials of nationals last year in Naperville, Ill.
The previous fastest time in NCAA Division 3 this year was an 8.02 by Mason Plant of Mount Union College in Gambier, Ohio, in the Division 3 All-Ohio championships at the Rike Center on Otterbein’s campus in Westerville, Ohio.
Second-fastest qualifier Friday for Saturday’s final was Idowu Bamisile of Farmingdale (N.Y.), who ran 8.26.
Rowan freshman Tyler Garland also qualified for the hurdles final after running 8.38 in the trials.