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Three-gold night for Team USA in Portland

3/18/2016
 

PORTLAND, Oregon -- Americans had another big medal haul Friday night at the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships, winning three gold medals and one silver. After two days of competition, Team USA leads the medal table with seven medals, winning four of the seven final events contested thus far.


Ali defends women’s 60m hurdles title

Team USA pulled off a 1-2 performance in the women’s 60m hurdles as Nia Ali (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) defended her World Indoor title with a winning time of 7.81. 2013 World Outdoor gold medalist Brianna Rollins (Miami, Florida) was second in 7.82 and Tiffany Porter of Great Britain third in 7.90. It was Ali-Rollins from the first hurdle on as they battled for the top podium spot. Back to competitive hurdling after maternity leave, Ali took her victory lap with her 22-month-old son, Titus Maximus Tinsley, on her hip.


At the gun, a 1-2-3 sweep for the Americans seemed possible as Keni Harrison (Lexington, Kentucky) blasted out of the blocks, well in the lead as she approached the first hurdle. Her quick start may have put her a little too close to the hurdle, which she hit, knocking her off balance and putting her out of the running.


Bromell takes fast men’s 60m

In what proved to be the fastest overall field ever in a men’s 60m final at the World Indoor Championships, 20-year-old Trayvon Bromell (St. Petersburg, Florida) got a solid start and held off the field, running 6.47 to take his first professional world title. Bromell’s win was perhaps the only clear placing at the tape, with a blanket finish leaving timers and officials examining the finish-line photo. After a five-minute wait, Asafa Powell of Jamaica was declared the silver medalist in 6.50, with Ramon Gittens of Barbados the bronze medalist in a national-record time of 6.51. Only .06 seconds separated second through eighth place as Americans Mike Rodgers (St. Louis, Missouri) and Marvin Bracy (Orlando, Florida) were sixth (6.54) and seventh (6.56), respectively. The eighth-place time of 6.56 by Kim Collins of St. Kitts and Nevis was the fastest for place in WIC history.


Reese soars to another LJ victory

The women’s long jump provided some exciting, late-round drama. Olympic gold medalist and two-time World Indoor champion Brittney Reese (Gulfport, Mississippi) was in second place after her opening mark of 6.97m/22-10.5. As the dominant jumper of her era, known for winning competitions at the last possible moment, Reese increased her best to 7.00m/22-1.75 on her fifth jump to move into first. But the very next jumper, 2014 World Indoor bronze medalist Ivana Spanovic of Serbia, made it a short-lived stay at the top, jumping 7.07m/23-2.5 to retake the lead. Reese made her last jump count, launching herself 7.22m/23-8.25, just 1 cm shy of her American indoor record and a new world lead, to take the gold. It was her seventh career gold medal in World Championship or Olympic competition; gold remains the only color of medal she has even won at those events. Spanovic was unable to respond and finished with the silver. In the sixth and final round, Olympic bronze medalist Janay DeLoach (Fort Collins, Colorado) had her best jump of 6.89m/22-7.25 to place fourth.


U.S. places 4th, 6th in pentathlon


In the final event of Friday’s pentathlon, Barbara Nwaba (Los Angeles) used a spirited 2:10.07 in the 800 to score 4,661 points and finish fourth, making her the sixth-highest scorer in U.S. history as she added nearly 250 points to her lifetime best. Georgia’s Kendell Williams (Kennesaw, Georgia), coming off a win at the NCAA Championships last weekend, finished sixth with 4,586 points. University of Oregon grad Brianne Theisen Easton of Canada won the competition with 4,881 points, thanks to a blazing 2:09.99 in the 800.


Eaton leads hep; Beach fourth

After four events in the heptathlon, defending champion Ashton Eaton (Eugene, Oregon) leads the competition with 3,564 points; Curtis Beach (Albuquerque, New Mexico) is fourth with 3,337. During Friday evening’s competition, Eaton posted a season-best 14.16m/46-5.5in the shot put for 738 points and jumped 1.99m/6-6.25 in the high jump for 794 points, a performance he was less than pleased with. Beach threw a personal best 13.12m/43-0.5 in the shot (675 points) and cleared 2.02m/6-7.5 in the high jump (822 points).


Centro, Andrews advance

In a physical first round of the men’s 1,500m, Matt Centrowitz (Arnold, Maryland) emerged victorious after a battle on the emerald green track. Centrowitz wavered between fourth place and the back of the pack to bide his time. The USATF Indoor 1500m champion made his move from sixth to first on the backstretch with the bell lap coming, getting the home crowd on their feet. He won the first heat handily in 3:47.15.


Robby Andrews (Manalapan, New Jersey) nabbed the final automatic qualifying spot in the second heat of the men’s 1500m, staying on the inside of the pack for much of the race and riding the shoulders of the leaders. Andrews was able to make room on the bell lap and hold his position, storming in as the third automatic qualifier from the heats in 3:41.21.


For complete results and competition schedule, visit www.iaaf.org.


Tickets are still available on Portland2016.com. Join the conversation with USATF on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #Portland2016.

 

Fans can watch the IAAF World Indoor Championships on NBCSN with USATF.TV’s The Cool Down following daily NBC Sports coverage of the morning session.

 

TV Coverage (all times Pacific)

Saturday

11 a.m.-2 p.m. — NBC Sports Live Extra

5-8 p.m. — NBC Sports Live Extra

6:30-8 p.m. — NBCSN (live)

Sunday:

12:30-3 p.m. — NBC Sports Live Extra

1-3 p.m. — NBCSN (live)


Team USA Medal Table

Gold (4)

Nia Ali, women’s 60-meter hurdles

Trayvon Bromell, men’s 60 meters

Brittney Reese, women’s long jump

Jenn Suhr, women’s pole vault


Silver (3)

Sam Kendricks, men’s pole vault

Sandi Morris, women’s pole vault

Brianna Rollins, women’s 60-meter hurdles


Quotes

Nia Ali, women’s 60-meter hurdles

“I got off to a really good start and I kind of blacked out in the middle of the race. I just tried to compete. I got off the last hurdle and I knew it was tight, so I just sprinted to the line.I’m overwhelmed and incredibly blessed. It means everything to have this start going into outdoors with it being an Olympic year. I’m just really excited.”


Brianna Rollins, women’s 60-meter hurdles

“It was great and I came out with a silver medal. I couldn’t be happier. I had a great start out of lane 4, so I can’t see the other girls. I hit a hurdle, which probably cost me (gold), but that’s totally fine. I’m satisfied with how I did today and I couldn’t be happier.”


On outdoors

“I’m very excited for the outdoor season. I’ve been struggling for the past two years and to be back on my feet and running fast, I’m so excited for the Trials.”


Keni Harrison, women’s 60-meter hurdles

“Things didn’t go as planned. I had a great indoor season and I’m ready for outdoor. I think that Rio is the No. 1 goal right now. I’m still hungry, I feel like I haven’t proven myself yet. I’m really young and this is my first professional season. I’m really pleased with what’s to come.”


Brittney Reese, women’s long jump

“Today was a good day. The jumps went great and I’m proud to be winning another medal for Team USA and winning another medal for all of us. To be back to where I used to be, and to be back winning, it sets me up for Rio. This is where I was when I broke the (American) indoor record in 2012 and it sets up to win another medal this summer.”


Janay DeLoach, women’s long jump

“At the end of the day, I’m jumping off my right leg and this is the best competition I’ve had jumping off my right leg. As much as I wanted to get into medal position and get a medal for Team USA, I didn’t have chance. But there’s a lot to look forward to in the outdoor season.”


Trayvon Bromell, men’s 60 meters

“It was a great race. I know those guys are very strong, and I know they are great competitors so my mindset was 'okay when you hear that gun go off, you have to go and you have to power out.' I pumped as hard as I could. When I came up out of my drive phase, I felt comfortable so I just kept going - kept going and I told myself I was going to run into the Portland sign just so that I could win this race.”


On if he was going for a PR in the final

“At the end of the day, I feel like at this competition and at this level, whoever wins is going to have a fast time. That's just how it works, so I didn't want to focus on times, I just wanted to focus on my execution throughout my race and just stay focussed on what I had to get done.”


Representing Team USA

“That's all it's really about. I try to tell myself that at the end of the day, whatever I run through the season and whatever I run at championships, to make a team is alright. But at the end of the day now that I'm a pro, I kind of treat it like an NCAA circuit. It's conference, and then NCs are like the Olympics. I treat it like USAs were like my conference meet and Nationals are like now or never. You've got the hard part over with making the team and now you just have to show up.”


Marvin Bracy, men’s 60 meters

“I was put in lane 1 because of how I did in the semis, and that’s on me. I felt a little isolated away from the heat. When I got out and those guys got ahead of me, I tried to change my race up in the middle of my race, and that’s not what you do in the middle of a tight 60m race like this.”


Mike Rodgers, men’s 60 meters

“This was disappointing, for sure. I couldn’t tell where I was in the lane and I know I’ll do better outdoors. I’m feeling pretty confident going into outdoors. Adding 40 meters makes it a totally different race. In outdoors, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. On to the next.”


Matt Centrowitz, men’s 1500 meters semifinal

“It felt alright as a prelim round can feel. Things got a little choppy out there. It’s part of racing, it’s all good. I’m excited.”


Robby Andrews, men’s 1500 meters semifinal

“We have two Americans in the final and that’s what we wanted. The plan was to be in the top group, stay out of trouble and secure a top-three spot.”


Barbara Nwaba, women’s pentathlon

The day was great. I started out the hurdles with a season’s best 8.43. I went into high jump and did pretty well. I was happy with my 1.82m bar. I got a PR in shot put on my first throw, so that was so exciting. It set me up for my last two events. My long jump was not great, but I knew I could move up some spots in the 800. I finished fourth and couldn’t be happier.


Kendell Williams, women’s pentathlon

My day was not like I was expecting. Obviously coming back from NCAAs, I wasn’t expecting to put up that great of a performance in terms of points because of such a quick turnaround. I would have liked to be more solid. I was happy with my shot put, though. I’m showing some consistency. I’m just glad for the experience and glad to be here.”


Ashton Eaton, men’s heptathlon

“It was okay today. The 60m got off to an okay start. I was most excited about long jump. It’s been awhile since I’ve been able to jump over 8m and it’s been my bread and butter. To do that today, and I think I did it with ease, it felt really good. I struggled in the other events but I like doing that because I know what I need to work on. I know what I want to do to be better. I love being out there with the guys. We have some new guys, some young guys, and to see them go after it fired me up. I’m excited for tomorrow.”



Amanda Brooks
Marketing and Communications Manager
USA Track & Field
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