Stowers' Personal Best Highlights LSU's Qualifiers on Day 3 at USA Outdoors
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KALB News Channel 5) – Lady Tiger senior Jasmin Stowers missed setting LSU’s school record in the women’s 100-meter hurdles by the narrowest of margins in Friday’s first round of qualifying as she raced to a wind-legal personal best of 12.71 seconds for fourth place overall in the preliminary round at the 2014 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Hornet Stadium.
Stowers lined up in the prelims with a previous personal best of 12.81 that she set in winning the event at the LSU Alumni Gold back on April 19 at the Bernie Moore Track Stadium in Baton Rouge.
She raced to the finish line in 12.71 (+1.0) on Friday to finish runner-up to Queen Harrison (12.56) in the third qualifying heat and just one one-hundredth off LSU’s 25-year-old school record of 12.70 that was set by the great Tananjalyn Stanley as the former NCAA Champion established her mark during the 1989 outdoor season.
Stowers will be among three Lady Tigers lining up in the semifinal round of the 100-meter hurdles on Saturday at 1 p.m. CT as she will be joined by former LSU standouts Lolo Jones and Tenaya Jones. Lolo Jones clocked a big seasonal best with a wind-legal 12.62 (+1.9) to win the first heat ahead of Kentucky’s Kendra Harrison (12.71) with the second-fastest time of the day. Tenaya Jones took third place in the second heat with her run of 12.87 (+1.4) as she advanced as the eighth-fastest hurdler in the opening round of qualifying.
Former Lady Tiger national champion Cassandra Tate got the LSU contingent off to a fast start in Friday’s competition at Sacramento State when she won the third qualifying heat of the women’s 400-meter hurdles in a time of 56.28 that proved to be the second-fastest time of the opening round. Tate beat former Arizona standout and 2012 Olympian Georganne Moline (56.64) to the finish line in the race.
Tate (56.28) was second only to Tiffany Williams in qualifying for the 400-meter hurdles as Williams won the second preliminary heat with the fastest time of the day at 55.14 ahead of Saturday’s semifinals.
2014 NCAA Bronze Medalist Quincy Downing followed Tate’s performance with a qualifying run of his own in the first round of the men’s 400-meter hurdles as he clocked 50.49 to finish runner-up to Bershawn Jackson (50.09) in the first preliminary heat. Downing’s opening run of 50.49 was the fourth-fastest time in the field, trailing only Johnny Dutch (49.99), Jackson (50.09) and Trevor Brown (50.44).
The semifinal round of the women’s 400-meter hurdles is scheduled for 3:13 p.m. CT followed by the men’s semifinals of the 400-meter hurdles at 3:29 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.
Three LSU athletes will look forward to lining up in championship finals this weekend at Hornet Stadium when junior All-American Vernon Norwood runs in the final of the men’s 400-meter dash on Saturday afternoon and former Lady Tigers LaTavia Thomas and Charlene Lipsey will both take to the track in the final of the women’s 800-meter run on Sunday afternoon.
After advancing to the semifinal round with an opening sprint of 45.39 in the preliminary round on Thursday night, Norwood returned to the track for the semifinals on Friday and turned in a time of 45.21 to follow heat winner Gil Roberts (44.99) in the first section with the third-fastest time of the day. The 2014 NCAA Outdoor Bronze Medalist will next run in the final on Saturday at 4:42 p.m. CT.
Joining Norwood in the 400-meter final will be Roberts (44.99), Kyle Clemons (45.11), Akeem Alexander (45.22), Josh Mance (45.28), Brycen Spratling (45.35), Michael Berry (45.43) and Manteo Mitchell (45.43).
Both former Lady Tigers competing in the women’s 800 meters at this year’s USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships will be among the eight finalists on Sunday afternoon after Thomas clocked 2:02.41 for third place in the second heat and fourth place overall in the semifinals and Lipsey followed in eighth place overall with a qualifying run of 2:03.22 for fourth place in the first heat.
The other qualifiers into Sunday’s 800-meter final include Ajee Wilson (2:00.93), Molly Beckwith (2:01.69), Laura Roesler (2:02.37), Shelby Houlihan (2:02.55), Brenda Martinez (2:02.86) and Maggie Vessey (2:02.95).
In other action, Tiger junior Rodney Brown finished in ninth place in the men’s discus throw with his mark of 192 feet, 6 inches in the preliminary round, while former Lady Tiger Kenyanna Wilson was 13th place overall in the women’s 100-meter semifinal with a time of 11.29 (+2.0) and former Tiger Richard Jones finished in 14th place overall in the men’s 800-meter semifinal with a time of 1:50.31 on the evening.
Saturday, June 28
TV Schedule: LIVE on NBC (3-5 p.m. CT); LIVE on Universal Sports (5-6 p.m. CT)