INDIANAPOLIS - Brycen Spratling of the University of Pittsburgh has been named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week after setting a collegiate record in the 500-meters Saturday at the Big East Conference Championships.
© Courtesy of Pitt Athletics
Spratling (Webster, N.Y.) entered the weekend having only ever run one 500m race; however, he excelled at the distance and clocked a quick 1:00.63 to set a new collegiate record and claim the top spot on the current world list.
“I had no idea coming into this weekend what the record was,” Spratling said. “I heard the announcer say it was a collegiate and American record over the loudspeaker and I couldn’t believe it. Everyone was congratulating me, and it was an amazing feeling.”
Spratling’s time is the fourth fastest ever run in the world for this odd distance, and it is the fastest time in 20 years.
Spratling was instrumental to his team placing third at the conference meet. Spratling also won the 200m in 21.16, finished sixth in the 60m in 6.89 and ran the first leg of the 4x400m relay that ran 3:23.59. Including the relay, Spratling contributed 29 points of Pittsburgh’s 84.50 points.
Spratling is in his sophomore year at Pitt, and only started running track during the spring of his senior year of high school. He will compete this weekend at the USA Indoor Track & Field Championships in Albuquerque, N.M., in the 400m.
Now in its eleventh year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on www.usatf.org. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.
2012 Winners: January 5, Landon Peacock; January 11, Kirubel Erassa; January 18, Shalane Flanagan; January 26, John Nunn; February 1, Gunnar Nixon; February 8, Jenn Suhr; February 14, Jillian-Camarena Williams; February 22, Brycen Spratling
WEEK IN REVIEW -- FEBRUARY 13-19
by USATF Statistician Glen McMicken
NOTRE DAME, GEORGETOWN TAKE BIG EAST CROWNS
Pitt's Brycen Spratling, mentioned above, was the individual star, and Notre Dame's men comfortably won the team title at the Big East championships Sunday at New York's Armory.
A fast 500 also highlighted the women's meet, which was won by Georgetown. Cincinnati's Kathy Klump romped to a 1:10.08, moving her into the all-time collegiate top-10.
HURD BACK AS A TRIPLE THREAT
2004 Olympian and American Record holder Tiombe Hurd had her best performance in more than five years Saturday at the Virginia Tech Challenge in Blacksburg, triple jumping 13.61/44-8. Hurd was the bronze medalist at the 2001 IAAF World Indoor Championships.
WL IN 55 FOR MAHAN
Former South Carolina star Shayla Mahan, a silver medalist in the 4x100 at the 2011 World University Games, dashed to a world-leading
6.73 in the 55 at the Gamecock Invitational in Columbia to clip .1 off her previous PR.
TRAVELLIN' MAN LAGAT GETS 1500 AL IN BRITAIN
Last week he set an American indoor record in the 5000 at the Millrose Games in New York, and Saturday at Birmingham, England, Bernard Lagat raced to a U.S.-leading 3:36.20 in the 1500 to take fourth in a star-studded field.
WILSON HURDLES TO #2 A-T SPOT AT SIMPLOT
Last year's IAAF World Youth 100H gold medalist Trinity Wilson topped the bill at the Simplot Games in Pocatello, as the Californian moved to No. 2 on the all-time high school list in the 60H with an 8.23 clocking.
TORRENCE GOES DOWN UNDER TO TAKE WL
David Torrence traveled to Sydney, Australia to take advantage of the summer conditions and compete outdoors. Torrence won the 1500m in a U.S. and world leading time of 3:35.66.