Barron smashes American Junior record on day five of IAAF World Junior Championships


Glen McMicken
USA Track & Field

MONCTON, CANADA -- Trevor Barron smashed his own American Junior record in the 10,000-meter race walk Friday, stopping the clock at 41:50.29 to place seventh at the 13th IAAF World Junior Championships. Barron, a Pennsylvania high schooler, clipped more than 30 seconds off the previous AJR of 42:22.79.

"The first couple kilometers they were walking 4:04's, and I didn't think I could go that fast," Barron said in explaining his conservative early pace. "I knew a lot of the guys who were ahead of me couldn't hold that pace, and I had planned on moving up as the race went on. I was really closing until about 8K, then the top four guys took off again. This is a great meet for top competition, and I was hoping for a higher placing. I really want to thank the USOC for supporting me and letting me train at the Olympic Training Center."

California prep Tyler Sorensen was the youngest walker in the field, and finished a very solid 15th in 43:55.49, just two seconds off his PR. "I am just enjoying the moment," Sorensen said. "I have only been in one international race before, and I was expecting a top-20 finish, so I am very happy to place so high considering how young I am. It felt good to be on pace and picking people off made me feel great. The 10K distance is great for me, but I am really looking forward to my first 20K."

In qualifying rounds, Team USA had great success in the men's 110 hurdles as both Caleb Cross of Arkansas and California high schooler Johnathan Cabral won their heats with personal bests. Cross took heat four in 13.56, while Cabral zipped to a 13.63 in heat five. "It felt good to finally run," said Cross. "I have been sitting around here for a week. I want to stay strong for the semis and final, and enjoy my last junior meet. It is more fun running over these shorter (39-inch) hurdles after a whole season of 42's."

Cabral said, "I really need to get up faster from my start and keep attacking. Now I have to come back tomorrow and do exactly what I did today, just faster."

Both U.S. runners advance easily to the semifinals of the men's 800, led by national Junior champ Casimir Loxsom of Penn State. Loxsom won heat four in 1:49.48, and NCAA indoor champ Robby Andrews of Virginia was second in the first heat at 1:50.80. Loxsom, whose mother is Lithuanian, said, "I felt a lot better today than I have in a while. I had a lot of confidence and thought I could go 1:45 if I had to. Now I just hope I keep feeling this way. We have more support here than anyone but the Canadians, and that really helps."

Oregon's Jordan Hasay was an automatic advancer in the women's 1500, coming back from her PR 3K run on Monday to take second in the second heat at 4:16.74. Rachel Schneider of Georgetown was seventh in heat one at 4:20.99 and did not advance.

One of the surprises of the morning was Virginia Tech's Jared Berman in the men's 3000 steeplechase. Berman, the U.S. runner-up, shattered his PR with an 8:55.33 in the second heat to take sixth and advance as a time qualifier. "I am so totally happy with this PR," Berman said. "I ran a smart race and didn't take it out too fast, so I was able to stay in there all the way. You have to be confident in yourself and keep training to reach this level. It doesn't mess up your cross country season, and this is the greatest experience of my life. I was so nervous coming onto the track, this was like the Olympics for me." High Point's Dakota Peachee did not fare as well, finishing 15th in heat one at 9:27.68.

Field event qualifying saw several of the U.S. contingent move on. Conor McCullough of Princeton, the American Junior record holder and silver medalist at this meet in 2008, had to take only one throw to get the auto mark in the men's hammer, launching the six-kilogram ball 76.05 meters. "I am feeling about ready," McCullough said. "I was decent technically, I just need to push across all the way and get a good counter. It's going to take a really long throw to medal here." Ohio high schooler Justin Welch also advanced with a throw of 67.46.

Both Americans made it through in the women's pole vault, with Shade Weygandt of Texas Tech clearing 4.05 and Kelsie Ahbe of Indiana squeaking in with a clearance at 3.85. In the women's high jump, Iowa high schooler Hannah Willms was perfect on the day with no misses through 1.81 to qualify for the final. Auburn's Maya Pressley was close to advancing with her 1.78, but lost out on the countback.

"It was a lot of fun," Willms said. "There was so much more competition here than I am used to in Iowa, you have to be at your highest level all the way. I was not too nervous because I have been here all week."

Andrew Evans of Michigan had a 57.18 on his third and final attempt to move on in the men's discus, but Central Michigan's Alex Rose did not advance with his 53.46. "There were good conditions today," Evans said. "I was trying to keep it slow and controlled and I accomplished what I set out to do. I was really nervous out there, and now I know what it is like at this high level I feel like a big throw is in me for the final."

For more information on the IAAF World Junior Championships, visit