McNeese’s Grace McKenzie leaves for NCAA Indoor Championships on Wednesday

McNeese’s Grace McKenzie leaves for NCAA Indoor Championships on Wednesday

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Grace McKenzie is ranked eighth in the nation in the pentathlon, making her one of only 16 athletes to get the invite to the NCAA Indoor Championships for the event.

“I’m nervous, but I’m excited,” Grace McKenzie said.

The meet will take place March 8-9 at the Birmingham Crossplex, in Birmingham Alabama, which is a familiar place for McKenzie. She recently completed in the Southland Conference Indoor Championships in Birmingham, helping her team finish fourth place after racking up 23 points of the teams total 72 throughout five events, including a third place finish in the high jump.

“I think I kind of have a home advantage," McKenzie said. “I know we’re not in Louisiana, but I’ve traveled to Birmingham so many times in my college career from freshman year to now. I’ve been there a million times and I think it’s a home spot for me.”

The senior holds the school and conference record in the pentathlon with 4,211 points.

“Even without the success, McNeese became home so fast. I never came here looking to break records,” McKenzie said. “I just came in and tried to do my best. Luckily enough my best breaks records and makes it to nationals.”

The senior holds the school and conference record in the pentathlon with 4,211 points scored earlier this year at the Samford Multi Meet, also held at the Birminbgham Crossplex. McKenzie will compete on March 8, starting at 12:15 with the running of the 60-meter hurdles.

“Just to be representing something bigger than myself this time is so awesome,” McKenzie said. “I want to put us on the map a little bit more. We’re kind of the forgotten conference. You hear about the Big Ten and the SEC, but we’re showing off just as much here. I want to make that a more prevalent thing.”

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