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Dendy wins LJ bronze in Birmingham


BIRMINGHAM, England - Defending champion Marquis Dendy took home his second World Indoor long jump medal in as many tries Friday night at the 2018 IAAF World Indoor Championships at Arena Birmingham, claiming a bronze in a thrilling competition.

It was not an easy row to hoe, with Dendy (Middletown, DE) and 2017 World Outdoor silver medalist Jarrion Lawson (Texarkana, TX) languishing around the 8-meter mark and below through four rounds of jumping. In the fifth round, Dendy unleashed a personal-best 8.42m/27-7.5 to launch into second place behind 2017 World Outdoor gold medalist Luvo Manyonga’s 8.44m/27-8.25. Lawson jumped 8.14m/26-8.5 in the round to move to third.

But at the end of the fifth round, Juan Miguel Echevarria of Cuba posted a huge personal best 8.46/27-9.25 to take the lead and bump Dendy to the bronze position and Lawson fourth entering the sixth and final round. Dendy did not improve and Lawson fouled, leaving them third and fourth as Echevarria - who did not even make the final at the 2017 World Outdoor Championships - and Manyonga went 1-2. Dendy’s 8.42 was the best bronze medal distance in meet history, and also the best ever distance by an American at the Championships.

Closing out pentathlon competition Friday night, Erica Bougard (Byhalia, MS) had a best mark of 6.18m/20-3.5 (905) in the long jump and ran 2:19.51 in the 800 (830) to place fifth overall with 4,571 points. Kendell Williams (Kennesaw, GA) went 6.30m/20-8 (943) in the long jump and ran 2:24.60 (762) to place ninth with 4,414 points.

At the end of day 1 of the men’s heptathlon, Zach Ziemek (Itasca, IL) cleared 2.02m/6-7.5 in the high jump for 822 points, finishing the day in sixth place with 3,305 points entering Saturday’s final three events.

In the only other final for Team USATF on Friday, Jeneva Stevens (Carbondale, IL) was eighth in the shot put with a best of 18.18m/59-7.75, and Daniella Hill (West LaFayette, IN) threw 17.26m/56-7.5 to finish 12th.

400m runners sweep to finals; hurdlers through to semis

Team USATF’s men’s and women’s 400m runners all made it to their respective finals. Running their second races of the day, the American women came out with the two fastest times of the semifinal round.  Shakima Wimbley (Fort Lauderdale, FL) took heat 1 from the gun, running from the front for a convincing win in 51.34, and Courtney Okolo (Carrollton, TX) ran a controlled race in winning heat 3 in 51.79 to post the two fastest times of the semis.

For the men, Aldrich Bailey (Arlington, TX) was forced to run in lane 2 throughout the final lap and was second in heat 1 in 46.33 to automatically advance, and Michael Cherry (Chesapeake, VA) also ran off the lead and advanced with a second-place time of 45.73 in heat 2.

In the highly anticipated start of the women’s 60m hurdles, American record holder Sharika Nelvis (Memphis, TN) won heat 1 in 7.97; Christina Manning (Waldorf, MD) was second in heat 2 in 7.96; and world outdoor record holder Keni Harrison (Clayton, NC) made a statement with a very quick 7.77 to win heat 4, the fastest time ever run in the heats at World Indoors.

Three out of four in middle distances

The women’s 1500m final will feature two Americans. In Friday night’s qualifying, Colleen Quigley (St. Louis, MO) moved from fourth to second in the last 200 of heat 2 to automatically advance to the final, running an indoor personal-best 4:09.31. In heat 3, Shelby Houlihan (Sioux City, Iowa) ran at the back of the pack for most of the race before briefly moving into second with 175m left. In a charge down the homestretch, Houlihan was fourth in an indoor personal best 4:06.21 to make it to the final on time.

In the men’s 800m first round, Drew Windle (New Albany, OH) spent the early stages of heat 1 running fifth out of six runners as the leaders split 50 seconds for the first 400. He surged in the final lap and briefly moved into second before being nipped in the final stretch for third. Windle’s personal-best time of 1:45.52, the fastest time ever by an American at the Championships, qualified him for the final on time.

In heat 2, Donavan Brazier (Grand Rapids, MI) was in a much more tactical race. With the field going through 400m in 53 seconds, the normally front-running Brazier ran well off the pace. As he came across with one lap to go, Brazier briefly moved to the lead but then relinquished it in the tight running of indoors. He finished fourth and was initially listed with a time of 1:47.81  - not fast enough to advance - but was then disqualified for a lane infringement at the start of the race while still running in lanes. After the race, the American junior record holder said he realized he took one step on the lane line at start of the race and knew a DQ was in the cards. His was just one of an extraordinarily high number of DQ’s throughout the day, including the disqualification of the entire third heat of the men’s 400 first round.

In the women’s 60m semifinals, Javianne Oliver (Monroe, GA) was fourth in the first heat in 7.10 and Destiny Carter (Raleigh, NC) was seventh in heat 2 in 7.28; neither advanced to the final. The top two finishers of each of three heats and the next two fastest times were to advance. Oliver’s time had been fast enough to be one of the two time qualifiers, but a dead heat for second in heat 2, with two women running 7.15, bumped her from the final as only one time qualifier was allowed in.

Click here for complete results from the World Indoor Championships.

Competition resumes Saturday morning. NBCSN television coverage begins Friday night, and live coverage throughout the competition is featured on NBC Sports Gold.


NBCSN TV Schedule (All Times ET)

Saturday, March 3: 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 4: 4:00-6:00 p.m.


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Team USATF Medal Table



Vashti Cunningham, HJ (1.93m/6-4), 3/1


Marquis Dendy, LJ (8.42m/27-7.5), 3/2


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