WILSON’S 100-METER PR HIGHLIGHTS DAY 2 ACTION AT USA CHAMPIONSHIPS
EUGENE, Ore. – Lady Tiger senior Kenyanna
Wilson missed earning a berth into the final round of the women’s
100-meter dash by the slimmest of margins during Friday’s
semifinal at the 2011 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships,
despite setting a new personal record with a time of 11.19 seconds for
the eighth-fastest time in qualifying at historic Hayward Field.
Wilson sprinted to a fourth-place finish in the first semifinal heat
with the eighth-fastest semifinal time of 11.19, but came up just short
in her bid to advance to the 100-meter final based on advancement rules.
In order to advance to the 100-meter dash final held Friday night at
Oregon’s Hayward Field, the sprinters in the field needed to
either finish in the top two spots in one of three semifinal heats or
finish with one of the two fastest times outside of those finishing in
the top two of their heats.
By running her personal best of 11.19, Wilson finished the semifinal
round with the third-fastest clocking among sprinters finishing in
either third, fourth or fifth place in the heats. She was just .02
seconds behind LaShaunte’a Moore, who earned the eighth and final
qualifying spot with a time of 11.17.
Despite coming up short of her first career finals appearance at the
USA Championships, Friday’s run is a fitting end to an
outstanding senior season with the Lady Tigers in 2011.
Wilson, a native of Glendale, Ariz., earned three All-America honors at
the NCAA Championships during the 2011 season as she followed a
third-place finish in the 60-meter final at the NCAA Indoor meet with a
fifth-place finish in the 100-meter final on June 10 at the NCAA
Outdoor meet. Wilson also led off LSU’s 4x100-meter relay team
that captured its 13th NCAA title all-time with a time of 42.64.
Like Wilson, former LSU middle distance All-American Richard Jones fell
victim to advancement policy despite running the fifth-fastest time of
the semifinal round in the men’s 800-meter run.
While running in the first of two semifinal heats, Jones finished the
race in fifth place with his clocking of 1 minute, 46.51 seconds. Only
the top-four finishers in each of the two semifinal heats qualified for
a spot in Saturday’s final. Despite finishing in fifth place in
the first heat, Jones finished well in front of the time of 1:48.78 run
by Khadevis Robinson of Nike to win the second semifinal heat.
Former Lady Tigers national champion LaTavia Thomas also saw her USA
Championship run come to an end in the semifinal round of the
women’s 800-meter run as she clocked 2:04.12 to finish in seventh
place in the second heat and in 13th place overall among the 16
Former Tiger hurdler Ryan Fontenot earned a berth into the semifinals
of the men’s 110-meter hurdles, as he nearly set a new personal
best of his own with a wind-legal time of 13.52 to take fourth place in
the second first-round heat. That was the 16th-fastest time of the
preliminary round as Fontenot earned a berth into the semifinal round.
He owns a personal best of 13.48 that was set during the 2010 outdoor
Barrett Nugent, the reigning NCAA champion in the 110-meter hurdles,
failed to advance to the semifinal after running 13.61 to finish in
fifth place in the third prelim heat and in 20th place overall.
Friday also proved to be an impressive day of qualifying for many of
LSU’s recruits competing in Eugene this weekend as part of the
2011 USA Junior Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Future Tiger sprint star Aaron Ernest of Homewood, Ala., finished in
sixth place in his first career final in the U.S. Junior 100-meter dash
as he crossed the finish line with a wind-aided 10.34, while running
out of Lane 1. He qualified for the 100-meter final after clocking the
sixth-fastest time of the qualifying round in a wind-aided 10.36 in a
race that was held earlier in the afternoon.
Ernest is set to return to the track on Saturday afternoon as he
competes in the U.S. Junior 200-meter dash with the qualifying round
scheduled for 6:25 p.m. CDT followed by the final at 8:25 p.m.
Two future Lady Tigers from St. Louis also enjoyed a big day of
qualifying at the USA Junior meet as the duo of Samantha Levin and
Montenae Roye-Speight advanced to finals that will also be held
Levin dominated the second qualifying heat in the girl’s
800-meter run as she ran the second-fastest effort of the day at
2:08.57. She finished more than two seconds ahead of her nearest
competitor in the heat with Georgia freshman Megan Malasartie finishing
well back in second place with her time of 2:10.77.
Roye-Speight preceded Levin’s performance with a second-place
finish in the second 400-meter prelim as her time of 54.54 was the
sixth-fastest in three heats of the qualifying round of the
girl’s 400 meters.
Levin will line up in the final round of the girl’s 800-meter run
at this week’s USA Junior Championships on Saturday evening at 7
p.m. CDT. Roye-Speight will follow with her appearance in the
girl’s 400-meter dash final set for a 7:20 p.m. start at Hayward
In her bid to retain her U.S. Junior championship in the girl’s
heptathlon, future Lady Tiger standout Alex Gochenour bowed out of the
competition following Saturday’s long jump after aggravating an
ankle injury that she suffered earlier this season. Gochenour stood in
fourth place in the overall point standing at 3,806 points through five
events, including 680 points with a mark of 17-9 ¾ in the long
Gochenour, a native of Missouri Valley, Iowa, won the 2010 U.S. Junior
gold medal with her PR score of 5,300 points. She will now prepare to
join the Lady Tiger program during the fall semester.