Razorbacks Wrap Up Weekend with Team USA Qualification
EUGENE, Ore. – The University of Arkansas women’s track and field team wrapped up a noteworthy weekend at the 2015 USATF Championships. The meet came to a close for the Razorbacks following an outstanding performance by Bowerman semifinalist Sandi Morris who finished second in the pole vault to join team USA for the 2015 World Championships in Beijing, China.
Entering the event at 4.25m/13-11.25, the Greenville, S.C. native put on a clinic clearing the first four heights on her first attempt. The only competitor with no misses, Morris shot to the top of the list surpassing even 2012 Olympic gold medalist Jennifer Suhr who marked a miss at 4.55m/14-11. Suhr and Morris went head to head after NCAA indoor record-holder Demi Payne failed to clear 4.70m/15-5. Hitting the bar just slightly at 4.75m/15-7, the Arkansas senior finished as the runner-up with a best clearance of 4.65m/15-3.
Morris is one of 16 collegians who qualified to represent the national team at the World Championships.
Program record-holder Chrishuna Williams was the first to compete for Arkansas in Thursday’s 800-meter preliminary round. Willliams crossed the line fourth in her heat in 2:03.54.
2015 All-Americans Taylor Ellis-Watson and Alex Gochenour rounded out the four Razorbacks represented in the senior section of the championships.
Ellis-Watson finished fifth in heat two of the 400-meter dash to take 19th overall in the field of 29.
Arkansas junior Gochenour who repeated her double qualifier role from the NCAA outdoor championships took on both the 100-meter hurdles and heptathlon.
American junior record-holder Desiree Freier also saw success this weekend claiming a spot on the national junior team and qualifying to represent the U.S. at the 2015 Pan Am Games later this summer. Overcoming a missed clearance at 4.20m/13-9.25, the world junior runner-up outlasted two other vaulters in a jump off to return to international competition for her second consecutive summer.
Three other Arkansas freshman showcased their talent at Hayward Field. Taliyah Brooks who led the trio opened the meet in Friday’s senior section of the 100-meter hurdles. Brooks improved on her time from the 2015 NCAA Outdoor Championships clocking 13.34 in heat three. Native Arkansan Kelsey Herman finished as the 10th best USA junior in the 100-meter hurdles in a time of 14.09. Sydney Brown completed competition for the young Razorbacks on Saturday evening in the 3,000-meter run.
2015 USATF Outdoor Championships | Complete
800 Meters (first round)
14. Chrishuna Williams – 2:03.54
400 Meters (first round)
19. Taylor Ellis-Watson – 53.22
100 Meter Hurdles Jrs (first round)
10. Kelsey Herman – 14.09
100 Meter Hurdles (first round)
20. Taliyah Brooks – 13.34
21. Alex Gochenour – 13.43
Heptathlon (day one)
10. Alex Gochenour – 3,473 pts.
Pole Vault Jrs (final)
2. Desiree Freier – 4.10m/13-5.25
3,000 Meter Jrs (final)
14. Sydney Brown – 10:53.91
2. Sandi Morris – 4.65m/15-3
Alex Gochenour – DNF
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