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Four American Records on Magnificent Saturday at Outdoor Championships

DES MOINES, Iowa - Three women attacked the record books in an outstanding day of competition that saw Brianna Rollins and Michelle Carter each set an American Record, while Amanda Bingson did so twice on the third day of senior competition at Drake Stadium.

Rollins (Miami, Fla.) put the world on notice with her sizzling 12.39 collegiate record in the 100m hurdles at the NCAA championships two weeks ago in Eugene, and added to the anticipation with her windy 12.30 in the semis earlier today. In the day’s final event, the former Clemson runner roared into the record books with a stunning 12.26 that left a high-quality field in her wake and demolished the 13-year-old American Record of 12.33, set at the 2000 Olympic Trials by Gail Devers. Rollins’ time is the equal fourth-fastest in world history and is only .05 off the 25-year-old World record, held by Bulgaria’s Yordanka Donkova.

Behind Rollins, Queen Harrison (Richmond, Va.) became the equal-sixth best performer in U.S. history with her 12.43 in second place and former USC star Nia Ali (Philadelphia, Pa.) set a lifetime best with her 12.48 in third. 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Kellie Wells (Richmond, Va.) was fourth at 12.54. Reigning Diamond League champion Dawn Harper Nelson has an automatic bye to the World Championships, where she will be joined by Rollins, Harrison and Ali.

Coming into the Outdoor Championships, Bingson (Las Vegas) had the fourth best throw in the country this year, but that quickly changed on Saturday as she became the best American hammer thrower of all time. Bingson first threw an American Record on her second attempt at 74.92m/245-9, quickly followed by an even better mark of 75.73m/248-5 on her third. Bingson improved her personal best by nearly three meters. The previous American Record of 74.19m/243-5 was set by Jessica Cosby in 2012. Jeneva McCall (Carbondale, Ill.) finished second from her first throw of 74.00m/242-9, and Amber Campbell (Indianapolis, Ind.) took third on her last throw of 73.03m/239-7.

Carter (Dallas, Texas) had the throw of her career in the women’s shot put to add her name to the American record books. Carter’s throw of 20.24m/66-5 was an improvement by a staggering 38 centimeters. Today’s victory gives Carter four national titles outdoors and one indoors. Carter held the lead in the event all day long as she opened with a throw of 19.13m/62-9.25. Carter’s record-setting mark came on her fifth attempt. Carter improved the previous American record of 20.18m/66-2.5 originally set by Ramona Pagel in 1988, and equalled by Jillian Camarena-Williams in 2011.

Fellow 2012 Olympian Tia Brooks (Grand Rapids, Mich.) finished second in 18.83m/61-9.5. The University of Arizona’s Alyssa Hasslen (Tuscon, Ariz.) finished third in 18.10m/59-4.75. Carter and Brooks own the IAAF A standard, and Hasslen has the B standard, so all three women will compete for Team USA in Moscow.

Brigetta Barrett (Duncanville, Texas) won her second USA Outdoor title with a personal best jump of 2.04m/6-8.25 in the women’s high jump. Barrett progressed through each height of the bar with ease, with only one miss of the day coming on her first attempt at her winning height. Barrett’s mark is a world leading mark and is the best by an American woman since Chaunte Lowe set the American record at Drake Stadium in 2010. 2011 World Championships teammate Inika McPherson (Port Arthur, Texas) finished second in 1.92m/6-3.5. Auburn University’s Maya Pressley (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.)  finished third in 1.89m/6-2.25. Barrett and McPherson secured their spots with the IAAF A and B standard respectively, Pressley will have the opportunity to chase the A standard for a spot on the World Championship team.

2012 Olympic champion and world record holder Ashton Eaton (Bend, Ore.) moved into the lead in the men’s decathlon after the discus. After running a 14.68 in the 110m hurdles, Eaton lobbed the disc 43.99m/144-4, and cleared 4.60m/15-1 in the pole vault. A solid 60.36m/198-0 in the javelin set Eaton up for an easier 1500 than he faced to get the WR last year at the Olympic Trials, and he trotted to a 4:34.15 to sew up his third straight national title with 8,291 points. Last year’s World Junior champion Gunnar Nixon was painfully close to the Moscow A standard, but fell two points short as he tallied 8,198 for second. Washington’s Jeremy Taiwo (Renton, Wash.), who met the A standard with his second-place 8,239 at the NCAA championships, gutted out a 4:20.29 in the final event to slip past Gray Horn (Waynesfield, Ohio) for third with 7,925.

Olympic bronze medalist Janay Deloach Soukup (Ft. Collins, Colo.) won her first USA Outdoor title on her first jump of the day. Deloach jumped 6.89m/21-10, recorded a mark of 6.65m/21-10 on her second attempt, and then passed all other attempts. Tori Polk (Marrietta, Ga.) finished second in 6.80m/22-3.75, and Funmi Jimoh (Missouri City, Texas) rounded out the podium in third in 6.71m/22-0.25. After winning the past five USA Outdoor titles, Brittney Reese (Gulfport, Miss.) fouled on all three of her attempts, but as the reigning World champion, she has an automatic bye to Moscow where she will join Deloach Soukup, Polk and Jimoh on the U.S. team.

The women’s 1500m was a tactical race with the entire field within striking distance of the win at the bell lap. With 250 meters to go, 17-year-old Mary Cain (Bronxville, N.Y.) moved into the lead and quickly distanced herself from the field. Treniere Moser (Portland, Ore.) was the only athlete who could close the gap on Cain. The pair was neck-and-neck over the final meters of the race, with Moser taking the win by a hair. Moser finished in 4:28.62, with Cain in 4:28.76. NCAA runner-up Cory McGee (Pass Christian, Miss.)  of the University of Florida finished third. Moser and Cain have the IAAF A standard, while McGee can chase the A or B standard to make the World Championship team.

Olympic silver medalist Michael Tinsley (Little Rock, Ark.) made a late charge in the 400m hurdles, taking the lead over the final barrier to win his second straight national title with the fastest time in the world at 47.96. Previous world-leader Johnny Dutch (Clayton, SC) made the early running in lane three, but Tinsley and two-time World champion Kerron Clement (Laporte, Texas) pushed the pace at the 200m mark and down the stretch those three were joined by 2005 World champ Bershawn Jackson (Miami, Fla.), with Clement edging Jackson 48.05-48.09 for second. Dutch ended up fourth at 48.21. The top three men own the IAAF A standard and will represent Team USA in Russia.

The men in the 1500m produced a thrilling race with a tight pack and multiple lead changes. Russell Brown (Hanover, N.H.), Matthew Centrowitz (Portland, Ore.), Mac Fleet (San Diego, Calif.) and Leo Manzano (Marble Falls, Texas) ran through the bell lap side-by-side. Centrowitz moved into the lead on the backstretch, with two-time Olympian Lopez Lomong (Beaverton, Ore.) quickly moving up into the top three, USA Indoor Champion Will Leer (Minnetonka, Minn.) moved up to battle Lopez for third, behind Fleet, but with 70 meters to go, the men were running five wide across the track with Olympic silver medalist Leo Manzano. It was a fierce battle to the finish with Centro winning in 3:45.17, Manzano second in 3:45.35 and Lomong third in 3:45.69. This win gives Centrowitz his second senior outdoor title and guarantees his spot at the World Championships, Manzano and Lomong will have to attain the A standard to make the squad.

Nicole Bush (Wyoming, Mich.) led from the gun in the women’s 3,000m steeplechase to win her first USA Outdoor title in 9:44.53. This was the second national podium appearance for Bush, after placing second at this meet in 2010. Ashley Higginson (Coltsneck, N.J.) finished second in 9:46.25, with the University of Colorado’s Shalaya Kipp (Salt Lake City, Utah) just behind in 9:46.83. Bush has the A standard and Higginson has the B standard for spots on the world team. Kipp will have the opportunity to chase the A standard to compete in Moscow.

2008 Olympic 4x400m gold medalist Natasha Hastings (New York) took an early lead and went on to run the second fastest time of her career to win her first national outdoor title in the 400 at 49.94, holding off a mad dash over the final 50 by Francena McCorory (Hampton, Va.). McCorory set a lifetime best with her 50.01, and NCAA champion Ashley Spencer (Indianapolis, Ind.) from the University of Illinois passed Joanna Atkins (Stone Mountain, Ga.) down the stretch to place third at 50.58 and take the last U.S. spot for the World Championships. Reigning Olympic champion Sanya Richards-Ross (Austin, Texas) continued her comeback from foot surgery with a sixth-place finish in 51.92, running the race in flats instead of spikes.

2008 Olympic gold medalist LaShawn Merritt (Portsmouth, Va.) won his fourth U.S. national title and second in a row with a season-best 44.21 with reigning Olympic champion Kirani James of Grenada watching in the stands. Behind Merritt, a pair with Florida Gator connections claimed the next two Moscow spots. 2012 Olympic 4x400 silver medalist and NCAA 400m winner Tony McQuay (Gainesville, Fla.) clocked 44.74 for second, and freshman Arman Hall (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.), the 2011 World Youth champion and gold medalist on Team USA’s gold medal 4x400 at World Juniors last year, was third at 45.01.

Maria Michta (Long Island, N.Y.) won the women’s 20,000m race walk earlier in the day. View the earlier recap here.

In qualifying action, Isiah Young (Junction City, Kan.) ran the fastest time of the day in the men’s 200m semifinals in 20.09 with a +3.7 wind. David Oliver (Denver, Colo.) ran 13.14 (+2.6) in the men’s 110m hurdle prelims. Jeneba Tarmoh (Los Angeles) rode a strong +5.2 wind to a 22.23 in the women’s 200m prelims. Georganne Moline (Phoenix, Ariz.) ran 54.82 to lead the way in the semifinals of the women's 400m hurdles.

Athlete quote from today's compeition are available here

Today’s events, seen in-stadium by a crowd of 8,638, were broadcast on Universal Sports, NBC Sports Network and as part of more than 50 hours of webcasting and nine hours of national television broadcasts. 2013 marks USATF’s most aggressive national media distribution of a national championship to date. View the complete webcast and broadcast schedule here.

The USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships conclude the 2013 USATF Championship Series. The meet also selects the athletes that will represent Team USA at the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia, August 10-18.

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