REDLANDS — Occidental women's track and field athlete Delaney Nolin won't let cerebral palsy slow her down.
After narrowly missing the cut in consecutive meets, the junior from Cumberland, Maine set a personal record in the 400m, crossing the line in 1:33.15 and punching her ticket to the U.S. Paralympic Trials in Charlotte, N.C. on June 28.
She needed to break 1:34, a time that had eluded her until the Redlands Last Chance Meet on Thursday.
"My procrastination ability kicked in," said Nolin, who ran 1:34.12 the weekend prior. "When I crossed the finish line, it felt awesome to finally do it."
Cerebral palsy is a group of permanent neurological disorders that affect body movement, muscle coordination and balance, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. In Nolin's case, CP has a significant impact on her gait and ability to run.
"I always ran because I liked running, but I had no idea how fast I should be running," Nolin said. "For most women a good time is breaking 60 seconds or for guys, it's the mid 40s. It was cool to have a goal to push towards and to know that I'm good at something I love to do."
Nolin will first compete at the Great Lakes Games on June 9 in Chicago. With the help of sprint coach Tyler Yamaguchi and head coach Rob Bartlett, she was able to peak at the very last moment of the season.
"Delaney's had the goal of qualifying for the U.S. Paralympic Trials for a couple of months now," Oxy head coach Rob Bartlett said. "She's been agonizingly close to her target time a number of times, so it was fantastic to see her achieve her goal in our last meet. Everyone on our team was so happy for her."
Nolin didn't have too much time to celebrate with her teammates. She ran the 100m and 200m shortly after.
Nolin's next mark to hit will be around 1:20 if she is to qualify for Rio.
The Tigers have a pair of women who are still on the bubble of making the NCAA Division III National Championship Meet next week. Sophomore Isabelle Dunne and first year Emma Yudelevitch are waiting to hear on scratches to see if they will be included in the field of 22 women in their respective events.
Yudelevitch ran a personal best 12.14 in the 100m, putting her at 24th in the nation. It's also the second-best mark in Oxy history.
Dunne's 62.72 in the 400m hurdles last weekend was originally in the top 22 but was bumped down to 26th in the country.
Oxy thrower Braelin Stockton set a personal best in the hammer with a toss of 125'7".Follow Oxy Athletics on Twitter Sign Up for Newsletters Watch on Youtube Follow us on Instagram