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Eaton takes U.S. title

6/24/2011
 
EUGENE - Ashton Eaton took a huge leap forward in his quest to become the world's greatest athlete as he won his first U.S. title and racked up 8,729 points, moving him to #5 on the all-time U.S. list on the second day of the 2011 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Ore.

Updates were provided throughout the day and can be reviewed below. Action resumes tomorrow at Hayward Field, and can be followed on a live webcast provided in partnership with RunnerSpace.com - view online here.

Five television broadcasts will be presented Saturday and Sunday, view schedule detials online.

8:00 p.m. -- Lagat 5x 5,000m champ
In the men's 5,000m, the race began in earnest with seven laps to go. Rupp threw down his mask, and the lead pack including Matt Tegenkamp, Chris Solinsky, Bernard Lagat and Andrew Bumbalough clicked off a pair of 61-second laps. With 1200m to go, Solinsky took the lead as Tegenkamp fell out of the top three. The top three of Solinsky, Lagat and Rupp began to pull away from the rest of the field with 800m to go and quickly gained 100m over the rest of the field. Lagat unleashed his kick coming down the final straightaway to finish in 13:23.06, with Solinsky in 13:23.65 and Rupp in 13:25.52. Lagat's win makes it his fifth USA title in the 5,000m.

8:00 p.m. -- Fifth time's a charm for Hazle in men's javelin
Four times in a row Mike Hazle had finished second at the U.S. Championships. Today, thanks to a third-round 78.22/256-7, the Southwest Texas State grad has his first national title in the javelin. Placings changed hands with regularity behind Hazle, and when the dust settled, 2010 champ Sean Furey was second at 77.99/255-10 and local favorite Cyrus Hostetler was third at 77.84/255-4.

7:50 p.m. -- Huddle wins first U.S. title
The women ran a crowded but quick race. With 1200m to go, they clocked there fastest lap yet in 72.1 seconds as the leaders began to stretch out from the field. Molly Huddle and Angela Bizzarri entered the bell lap almost side-by-side, but Huddle turned over a new gear racing away from the field, clocking a 63.9 last lap and winning in 15:10.00. Amy Hastings moved up to overtake Bizzarri for the runner-up spot, with both spurring each other on to lifetime best performances. Hastings finished in 15:14:31 and Bizzarri in 15:16; both have the IAAF "B" standard.

7:25 p.m. -- Smooth sailing in steeple prelims
Bridgett Franek led the first heat of the women's from the gun to win in 9:53.33. While Emma Coburn led most of the second heat, the top five closed the gap and from the last water barrier, it was a sprint to the finish, with Nicole Bush taking the win in 9:59.11.

6:45 p.m. -- Eaton scores lifetime best, world leader to take first U.S. dec win

Ashton Eaton was never challenged in the decathlon, leading from the very first step of the 100 on Thursday through to the last stride in the 1500 Friday, scoring a lifetime-best 8,729 points to become the fifth-best U.S. all-time performer and record the best mark in the world in 2011 as he captured his first U.S. national championship. Eaton had a sizable lead after the first day's events, and an American dec 110H record paired with a 5.05/16-4.75 clearance in the pole vault saw him finish 718 points clear of runner-up Ryan Harlan. Harlan, the 2004 NCAA champ for Rice, scored 8,011, his best score since 2006, to secure the B standard for the World Championships in Daegu. Needing a 4:59.8 to crack the 8K barrier, Harlan ran a gutsy 4:56.44 in the 1500. NCAA bronze medalist Miller Moss of Clemson was third with 7.878 points.

6:30 p.m. -- Dix drives to second straight 100 title
Defending 100 champion Walter Dix drove through the line to claim his second straight U.S. 100 crown with a 9.94, edging 2004 Olympic and 2005 World champion Justin Gatlin by .01. Mike Rodgers grabbed the third spot on the Worlds team with his 9.99. Ivory Williams was charged with a false start on the first attempt and ran under protest, while Travis Padgett scratched from the final.

6:15 p.m. -- Jeter flies to second national title, confirms top status
Carmelita Jeter ran a picture-perfect race and romped to her second U.S. 100 title with a wind-aided 10.74 to confirm her status as the world's best female sprinter in 2011. Jeter, who ran a world-leading 10.70 in Eugene at the Pre Classic earlier this month, moved away from the field throughout the race, with Marshevet Myers closest at 10.83 in second place. 2007 Pan Am Games champ Miki Barber was also sub-11 in third with a 10.96.

6:00 p.m. -- Smock bounds to first national title, takes triple jump gold
Amanda Smock was the runner-up at the USA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque in February, and she picked a perfect time to uncork a lifetime best as she triple jumped 14.07/46-2 on her second attempt to capture her first U.S. title. Former Kansas star Crystal Manning nabbed the runner-up spot on her final attempt with a 13.94/45-9, and Toni Smith was third at 13.79/45-3. No American woman has met the World Championships A or B standard.

5:55 p.m. -- McQuay just keeps getting faster, leads men's 400 qualifiers
Florida's Tony McQuay lowered his own American-leading time in the men's 400 to 44.79 to win the first semifinal, while Greg Nixon, a former NCAA Division III athlete at Howard Payne University in Texas, was the winner of the second semi in 45.24. Jeremy Wariner also advanced easily with a 45.28, and Oregon freshman Mike Berry used a strong last 100 to advance at 45.39. Kerron Clement, the defending World champion in the 400H, was the final qualifier for the final.

5:45 p.m. -- Jock, Robinson win men's 800 semis
NCAA runner-up Charles Jock of Cal-Irvine and Khadevis Robinson won the men's 800 semifinal sections with markedly different tactics. Jock took the pace in semi one, going through 400 in 51.4, and he held on down the stretch to win in 1:45.80 ahead of Tyler Mulder's 1:45.82. Penn State's Casimir Loxsom, the 2010 World Junior silver medalist, was third at 1:45.85, and Nick Symmonds, the '08 Olympic Trials champ, placed fourth at 1:45.87. Robinson's semi went out much slower, and the wily veteran took off with just under 300 to go to win in 1:48.78. NCAA champion Robby Andrews of Virginia advanced to the final with a third-place finish.

5:40 p.m. -- McCorory, Felix win women's 400 semis, Richards-Ross scratches
American indoor record holder Francena McCorory and world leader Allyson Felix won the two semifinals of the women's 400, with McCorory notching the fastest time overall at 50.77. Natasha Hastings was sub-51 in second place behind McCorory at 50.98, and NCAA champion Jessica Beard of Texas A&M took third. Felix and Debbie Dunn were side-by-side down the stretch in the second section, with Felix just faster, 51.52-51.55. Defending world champion Sanya Richards-Ross, who has a bye into Daegu, chose not to run in her semi.

5:30 p.m. -- No surprises, Montano leads women's 800 semis
2010 World Indoor bronze medalist Alysia Montano ran the fastest time in the women's 800 semis, taking the first section in 2:01.37. Five of the qualifiers for the final were under 2:02, and there were no surprises in who advanced. Maggie Vessey was victorious in semifinal two at 2:01.94.

5:15 p.m. -- Barrett soars to high jump gold and Worlds A standard
Arizona's Brigetta Barrett added a U.S. national championship to the NCAA title she won two weeks ago in Des Moines, clearing a lifetime-best 1.95/6-4.75 to meet the World Championships A standard. Barrett had no misses until 1.98/6-6. Former Arizona star Liz Patterson finished second with a first-attempt clearance at 1.89/6-2.25, and Inika McPherson was a surprising third at 1.86/6-1.25 in only her second meet since 2009. McPherson, who was 11th at the 2007 Pan Am Games in Brazil, has the WC B standard after clearing 1.93/6-4 at a meet in El Paso last month. American Record holder and defending champion Chaunte Lowe, who gave birth to her second child in April, finished tied for ninth at 1.78/5-10.

5:00 p.m. -- Demus dominant in 400H semis
2009 World Championships silver medalist Lashinda Demus was clearly the class of the women's 400H semis, cruising to a 55.35 for the fastest time overall. NCAA champion Ti'erra Brown won the second semi in 56.06, and NCAA runner-up Turquoise Thompson of UCLA also advanced. Among the notable athletes who did not advance were 2008 Olympic eighth-placer Tiffany Williams and Nicole Leach.

4:45 p.m. -- Three men sub-10 in semis; Gay out of 100
Overshadowing some fine running by Ivory Williams, Travis Padgett and Justin Gatlin was the news that American Record holder Tyson Gay had scratched from the semis of the men's 100. Williams was the fastest overall at 9.96w to win the third semi, with Padgett second in 9.97w. Gatlin won semi two at 9.99w, and Mike Rodgers took the first semi in 10.03. NCAA runner-up Mookie Salaam of Oklahoma also did not start.

4:30 p.m. -- Terrific trio sets up finals showdown in women's 100
Three semifinal heats produced three supremely easy wins for Marshevet Myers, Alex Anderson and world leader Carmelita Jeter. Myers blasted out of the blocks and powered through 80 meters before cruising the final 20 to finish in 10.90w, the fastest time overall. Anderson won the opening semi in 11.04, and Jeter did just enough to win the third in 11.07.

4:15 p.m. -- Oliver off to a great start in 110H
The first round of the men's 110H produced a bevy of fast times, topped by world leader David Oliver's 13.08. Jason Richardson rolled to a lifetime-best 13.15 behind Oliver, and Ronnie Ash won the first heat in 13.25. Five other men ran faster than 13.40, including a 13.27 for Aries Merritt. NCAA champion Barrett Nugent did not advance after finishing fifth in the third heat.

Noon -- Eaton picks up pace on day two with dec 110H AR
Picking up right where he left off last night, Ashton Eaton continued his torrid pace in the decathlon by running the fastest-ever 110H by an American in a dec, clocking 13.52. The previous best was 13.67 by Dan O'Brien at the Goodwill Games in 1998. Bryan Clay, the 2008 Olympic champion, went down midway through the race and walked off the track. NCAA champion Michael Morrison of Cal withdrew before the event.

For more information on the 2011 USA Outdoor Championships, including complete results and broadcast information, visit the event page or www.VisaChampionshipSeries.com



Katie Branham
Marketing & Communications Manager
USA Track & Field
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