TUCSON –The University of Arizona Wildcat men's and women's track and field team program has nine athletes with ties to Arizona competing at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The meet will take place on June 20-23 in Des Moines, Iowa at Drake Stadium. In order for each athlete to qualify for the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia, they must finish in third place or better and meet the "A" Standard. The World Championships are set to start on August 10 and conclude on August 18.
For the first time, Bridgett Barrett will compete as an Arizona alumnus. She will high jump on Saturday, June 22 at 2:45 p.m. CDT. Barrett has claimed just about every possible accolade to end her Arizona career. For the 2013 outdoor season, she was named the Pac-12 Women's Field Athlete of the Year, USTFCCCA National Women's Field Athlete of the Year, Women's West Region Field Athlete of the Year and the 2013 Pac-12 Woman of the Year. Barrett has also been recognized for her work in the classroom, she was named to the Pac-12 All-Academic honorable mention team and she was a CoSIDA Academic All-District honoree. She graduated from Arizona cum laude as a theatre arts major.
Barrett has been very successful in her previous trips to the USA Championships. At the 2010 USA Championships, she took third place with a mark of 6-3.25 (1.91m). In 2011, the most recent USA Championships, Barrett earned a first-place with a jump of 6-4.75 (1.95m), a personal-best mark at the time. Barrett automatically qualified for the IAAF World Championships with that clearance, it met the "A" Standard. At the World Championships, Barrett took 10th place with a mark of 6-4 (1.93m).
For the 2013 season, Barrett heads into Saturday's competition tied for No. 2 mark in the world, 6-6.25 (1.99m). She is only behind Anna Chicherova of Russia who has cleared 6-7.5 (2.02m). Barrett's mark meets the World Championships "A" Standard. Per the IAAF official standings, Maya Pressley of Auburn has the No. 2 mark in the U.S. with a clearance of 6-2 (1.88m). Chaunte Lowe (Nike) who finished in first place at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials is not participating due to pregnancy. Former Wildcat Liz Patterson will compete in the high jump with Barrett. Patterson has a season-best mark of 6-0 (1.83m) and is tied for the No. 10 mark in the U.S. heading into the competition per USATF.
Just like Barrett, Georganne Moline is now an alumnus of Arizona. She will compete in the first round of the 400-meter hurdles on Friday, June 21 at 5:45 p.m. CDT. The semifinal round of the event takes place on Saturday, June 22 at 4:03 p.m. The final is on Sunday at 3:44 p.m. This will be Moline's first time competing in the USA Championships. At the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials, she earned a silver medal and punched her ticket to London for the Olympics. LaShinda Demus (Nike), who won the gold medal at the 2011 World Championships automatically qualifies for the 2013 World Championships because of that first-place finish. If she finishes outside of the top three places, she still advances. Also, if she is not in the top three, the three ladies who do finish in 1-2-3 will still advance to Moscow. Moline's season-best time of 53.72 is also a personal best and is the No. 3 time in the world. Her time also meets the World Championships "A" Standard. She is behind Kori Carter (Stanford) whose time of 53.21 is No. 1 in the world and is the collegiate record.
Senior-to-be Shapri Romero will run in the first round of the 400 meters at 5:20 p.m. CDT on Thursday, June 20. The semifinal takes place at 7:36 p.m. on Friday, June 21. The final is set for Saturday, June 22 at 5:08 p.m. Romero's season-best time of 52.37 is a personal best as well. The World Championships "A" Standard is 51.55 while the "B" Standard is 52.35. Her time ranks at No. 26 in the U.S. and No. 75 in the world this season per the IAAF. However, not everybody who has run the 400 meters and set a top time will run at the USA Championships. Romero earned a third-place finish at the Pac-12 Championships in the event. She was a second-team All-American in the 4x400-meter relay at the 2013 NCAA Championships.
Jen Bergman is also a new alumnus of Arizona. She will compete in the 10,000-meter race at 8:20 p.m. CDT on Thursday, June 20. Bergman will be making her first trip to the USA Championships. Her season-best time of 33:04.58 is also a personal-best time and ranks as No. 12 in the U.S. and No. 66 in the world. The World Championships "A" Standard is 31:45.00 and the "B" Standard is 32:05.00. Bergman finished in sixth place at the 2013 NCAA Championships in the event and earned first-team All-America honors.
Alyssa Hasslen will compete in the shot put at 2:30 p.m. CDT on Saturday, June 22. Hasslen exhausted her eligibility for outdoor track but she will be a senior for the 2014 indoor track and field season. Hasslen has a season-best mark of 56-6 (17.22m). That ranks as No. 13 in the U.S. and No. 52 in the world per the IAAF standings. She earned a runner-up finish at the Pac-12 Championships and also earned all-conference honors in the discus. The World Championships "A" Standard is 60-0.5 (18.30m). Hasslen meets the "B" Standard.
Volunteer assistant coach LaTisha Holden will compete in the 100-meter hurdles. Holden's season-best time is 13.22, which is tied for No. 85 in the world per IAAF and has the 17th-best entry mark per USA Track and Field (USATF). The World Championships "A" Standard is 12.94. Holden meets the "B" Standard.
Bernard Lagat, another volunteer assistant coach will also compete at the USA Championships. He is set to run the in the 5K with a season-best time of 13:07.76. That time is No. 12 in the world and No. 1 in the U.S. His time meets the World Championships "A" Standard. He is a four-time USA Champion in the 5K. His race is set for 4:30 p.m. CDT on Sunday, June 23.
Senior-to-be Nick Ross will compete in the men's high jump for the second time in his career. That competition will take place on Sunday, June 23 at 1:45 p.m. CDT. Ross, who redshirted the indoor and outdoor season for Arizona, competed unattached and posted a season-best mark of 7-5.75 (2.28m). That mark ties his personal best and is tied for No. 4 in the U.S. and is also tied for No. 14 in the world. Just like Demus in the 400-meter hurdles, Jesse Williams (Nike) won the 2011 World Championship in the men's high jump. Ross has met the World Championships "B" Standard, however, the "A" Standard is 7-7 (2.31m). Ross earned a third-place finish at the U.S. Olympic Trials but failed to make the Olympic team because he did not meet the "A" Standard. At the 2011, USA Championships he tied for 12th place with a clearance of 7-0.5 (2.15m).
Julie Labonté will compete in the Canadian National Championships in Montcon, Canada at the Stade Montcon Stadium. Labonté will be a senior for the outdoor track and field season but is out of eligibility for indoor track. On Friday, June 21 at 6 a.m. MST, 10 a.m. ADT (local time in Montcon), Labonté will compete in the qualifying round of the women's shot put. The final will take place at 4:30 p.m. MST. She has a season-best mark of 57-8.25 (17.58m) which is tied for No. 33 in the world and is No. 1 in Canada. The World Championships "A" Standard is 60-0.5 (18.30m). Labonté meets the "B" Standard. Labonté will throw the discus in the qualifying round on Thursday, June 20 at 2:15 p.m. MST. The final of the event will take place on Saturday, June 22 at 6 a.m. MST. Her season-best mark 184-6 (56.25m) is No. 1 in Canada and No. 85 in the world. The World Championships "A" Standard is 203-5 (62.00m) and the "B" Standard is 195-2 (59.50m). Labonté won both events at the 2012 Canadian Olympic Trials but only made the Olympic team in the shot put because she failed to meet the standard in the discus.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches' Association (USTFCCCA) announced Barrett as a semifinalist for The Bowerman. It is the third-straight year she has been named one of ten semifinalists. She was on the Bowerman Watch List for the entire 2013 season. She was a finalist for the most prestigious award in collegiate track and field in 2012.
Lawi Lalang is a semifinalist on the men's side for The Bowerman. He was also included in each edition of the Bowerman Watch List throughout the 2013 season. At the NCAA Outdoor Championships, Lalang became only the 12th man in collegiate history to complete the 5K/10K double at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. He's the third man to ever win two individual distance events at both the indoor and outdoor championships in the same year. Lalang is the first man to ever double in the mile and 3K during the indoor season and the 5K and 10K during the outdoor season. He has now won seven NCAA titles, one cross country, four indoors and two outdoors.
The Bowerman, which debuted in 2009, is presented annually by the USTFCCCA to the most outstanding male and female collegiate track & field athletes in the nation. The three finalists for the men and three finalists for the women will be announced on July 10.
The USA Championships will be broadcast live on ESPN2 from 8-10 p.m. on June 21. On June 22, Universal Sports will broadcast live from 4 to 5 p.m. and the NBC Sports Network will take over from 5-7 p.m. On June 23 live coverage will be from 3-4 p.m. on NBC Sports Network and then live coverage will resume from 4-6 p.m. on NBC. USATF is launching a new internet broadcasting outlet that will go live at this meet. Coverage will be daily and total up to 50 hours throughout the meet.
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