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Youth sprinter Noah Lyles wins USATF Athlete of the Week

INDIANAPOLIS — Youth sprinter Noah Lyles (Alexandria, Va.) earns USA Track & Field Athlete of the Week on the strength of his 200-meter title at the U.S. Area Youth Selection Trials - Track & Field in Miramar, Fla., April 5.

The 16-year-old T.C. Williams High School sophomore was the only sprinter to record two sub-21 second races with his finals time of 20.89 setting an early-season national youth standard. Lyles took advantage of a perfect running day in Florida, benefitting from mild temperatures and accommodating tailwinds en route to a dominant performance.
The win put Lyles in promising position to earn a spot on the Americas Team, heading to the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China, Aug. 16-28.  U.S. athletes may be nominated after the event in Miramar and may only compete in the U.S. event. Nominations for the Americas Youth Olympic Team are determined following the third and final trials event to be held in the Carribean and South America, and the team will be named in late June.
While Lyles takes home AOW honors, there were several other exceptional track & field performances across the country this week. Janet Bawcom (Rome, Ga.) broke her own American 10 mile record with a time of 52:12 at the USA 10 Mile Championships, distancing herself from the pack early on the way to her fourth consecutive USA 10 Mile Championship. University of Florida sprinter Dedric Dukes (Miami, Fla.) pulled off an impressive double at the Florida Relays as a college junior. Dukes ran a world-leading 19.97 200m, then returned to the track the next day to help his 4x400m relay team run a 2:59.73 race, the second-fastest collegiate 4x400 of all-time. Joanna Atkins (Stone Mountain, Ga.) also turned in a stellar performance at Florida Relays, setting personal bests and world-leading marks en route to winning both the 100m (11.09) and 200m (22.27).

2014 Winners: January 15, Chris Derrick; January 22, Galen Rupp; January 29, Galen Rupp; February 5, Alexa Efraimson; February 12, Mike Rutt; Feb. 19, Bernard Lagat; Feb. 26, Sharon Day-Monroe; March 3, David Torrence; March 13, Francena McCorory; March 19, Irene Obera; March 26, Duane Solomon; April 2, Maria Michta; April 7, Noah Lyles.

Contributed by Glen McMicken

2009 World Youth relay gold medalist Dedric Dukes made the most of competing on his home track as the Florida junior dashed to a world-leading 19.97 in the 200 and helped the Gators to a stunning 2:59.73 win in the 4x400 at the Florida Relays.

That relay time put Florida at No. 2 on the all-time collegiate list, but only a 43.8 anchor by Arman Hall held off the Gainesville Elite's 2:59.76 in second. Najee Glass and Hugh Graham were the other half of the UF foursome, while David Verburg, Torrin Lawrence, Christian Taylor and Kerron Clement made up the second-place team.
Hall, a 4x400 gold medalist at the 2013 World Championships for Team USA, earlier won the 400 with a U.S.-leading 45.19 and also ran on the Gators' runner-up 38.55 4x100 squad.
World Indoor 4x400 gold medalist Joanna Atkins sprinted to a pair of lifetime bests in the 100 and 200, winning in 11.09 and 22.27, both world-leading times. Florida's women's 4x400 rolled to a 3:27.38 to become the No. 8 team of all-time collegiately, and Kentucky's sprint medley relay clocked a 3:43.20 to claim the No. 5 spot on the schools list. Two hurdles list-leaders came from Florida's Bridgette Owens in the 100H (12.90) and Kentucky's Kendra Harrison in the 400H (56.60).

Marielle Hall of Texas slashed more than a minute off her lifetime best in the 5000 to take over the No. 10 slot on the all-time collegiate list with a 15:19.26 at the Stanford Invitational. Other U.S. leaders came from BYU's Jason Witt in the 10,000 (28:36.64) and Tabor Stevens of Adams State in the 3000SC (8:38.46). Stephanie Dinius  also nabbed an AL in the women's 10,000 with her 32:59.10 PR, and Baylor's Rachel Johnson took over the women's national 3000SC lead at 9:49.31.

-- Jason Young won the discus with a U.S.-leading 63.75m/209-2 at the Texas Tech Open in Lubbock.

-- Oregon's Laura Roesler ran the fastest women's 800 ever in a collegiate dual meet, winning against Arizona in 2:01.10 at Eugene.

-- Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) Aquinas High School broke their own national prep record in the girls' 4x200 with a 1:33.43 at the Florida Relays. The school also won the 4x100 with a 45.53, and the 4x400 at 3:40.10.

-- Lindsay Schwartz won the Sam Adams heptathlon in Santa Barbara with a score of 5,942 points. Also at that meet, Ashton Eaton won the 100 in 10.43 and the 400 in 45.86, while 2011 World high jump champ Jesse Williams cleared 2.26m/7-5 to win.

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