2014 USATF Outdoor Championships day 3 recap: Emma Coburn takes steeplechase, Dawn Harper wins 100m hurdles

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Pac-12 alums and current athletes tore up every inch of the track at day 3 of the 2014 USATF Outdoor Championships at Hornet Stadium. Colorado alum and steeplechase queen Emma Coburn captured her third national title in a meet record time of 9:19, while UCLA alum Dawn Harper celebrated her third 100m hurdle title with a cartwheel.

Here's a full breakdown of Saturday's action in Sacramento featuring athletes with Pac-12 connections:

Colorado

Former Colorado star and current New Balance athlete Emma Coburn crushed the competition Saturday in the women’s steeplechase, cruising to a win in 9:19 and obliterating the previous meet record of 9:27 set by Anna Willard in 2008. Coburn looked effortless over each hurdle despite the 90 degree temperatures, putting more and more distance over runner-up Ashley Higginson of Saucony, who finished in 9:27.

“I felt great in the heat so running 9:19 here shows that I’m in better shape than when I ran 9:19 in Shanghai,” Coburn said. “I don’t really know what to expect from the season but I just want to continue to PR and be competitive on the world stage.”

The 2012 Olympian was the 2013 and 2011 NCAA outdoor champion in the event as well as the 2011 and 2012 U.S. champion.

Joseph Morris, a former Buff who now runs for Nike, secured his spot in the semis of the men’s 200m after finishing fifth in heat four to qualify on his time of 20.72. Morris finished his career as a Buff last year with five All-American honors. 

Colorado senior and 2012 Olympian Shalaya Kipp competed for a seventh-place finish in the women’s steeplechase in a time of 9:46.

UCLA

Bruin alum Dawn Harper had a textbook finish-line lean to capture the win in the women’s 100m hurdles final over Queen Harrison. Her time of 12.55 just barely edged out Harrison’s 12.56, but says Harper knew she had it in the bag.

“I knew I had it. You know, you can feel it  as soon as I leaned I was like, yep, got it!” Harper said, smiling. “So, yeah, I was pretty confident. That’s why I did my cartwheel.”

Former Bruin Kevin Craddock earned an automatic spot in the semis of the men’s 110m hurdles Sunday with a third-place finish in heat one.

UCLA alum Mackenzie Hill earned a spot on the line in the final of the women’s 400m hurdles after finishing fourth in heat two in a time of 57.24.

Bruin alum Jessica Crosby Toruga took second place in the women’s hammer throw with a mark of 71.72m behind event-winner and defending champion Amanda Bingson’s 75.07m. Crosby Toruga is a four-time U.S. champion in the event (2006, 2008, 2009, and 2011).

Oregon

NCAA 110m hurdles champ and Oregon wide receiver Devon Allen easily took the win in heat three of the men’s 110m hurdles with a blazing time of 13.41. He also beat Olympic silver medalist Jason Richardson in the process. Not a bad way to start the day for the redshirt freshman.

“My goal this week is to run 13.0, 12.99,” Allen said. “We’ll see. I feel pretty good. I feel I can definitely run faster in the semifinals and finals. So we’ll see [Sunday].”

With his recent success on the track that has included an NCAA title win in 13.16, behind only Renaldo Nehemiah’s 13.0 from 1979 in the NCAA record book, Allen has only recently shifted his focus solely to track after the spring football season ended in May. But he has kept his eye on the ball.

When asked if he was rethinking a shift in focus from football to the track, Allen smiled and replied, “Not yet.”

Oregon senior standout Phyllis Francis finished fourth in the final of the women’s 400m, but was disqualified after stepping outside of her lane. Francis was coming off of a runner-up finish to Texas’ Courtney Okolo at the NCAA outdoor finals in Eugene.

Former Duck AJ Acosta battled down the home stretch for a tight sixth-place finish in the men’s 1500m final in a time of 3:39.97. Acosta is currently training unattached while working as an elementary school substitute.

Oregon alum and now Oiselle athlete Britney Henry competed to a fifth-place finish in the women’s hammer throw with a mark of 68.93m. Since graduating from Oregon, Henry has placed fifth at the 2013 indoor and outdoor championships.

2011 world outdoor 4x400m gold medalist Mike Berry competed for a sixth-place finish in the final of the men’s 400m with a time of 45.12.

Arizona

In a nail-biter high jump final, former Wildcat Nick Ross jumped to a runner-up tie with Dustin Jones, who both finished behind Olympic silver-medalist Erik Kynard of Nike. Ross reached a mark of 7-5 ¾, but failed to clear when it was raised to 7-7. He was coming off of a third-place finish at the NCAA outdoor championships.

Former Wildcat and now Nike athlete Georganne Moline took care of business in the semis of the women’s 400m hurdles with a runner-up finish in heat one behind Tiffany Williams in a time of 55.51.

Arizona State

2014 NCAA outdoor champion Brian McBride finished in fourth place in the final of the men’s high jump with a mark of 7-5 ¾, which ties his lifetime best in the event.

Former Sun Devil Chelsea Cassulo competed in the women’s hammer throw for a 12th-place overall finish with a mark of 61.53m.

California

Former Cal standout Ray Stewart earned a spot in the semis of the men’s 110m hurdles Sunday with a fifth-place finish in heat one in 13.67. An All-American at Cal, Stewart captured two conference championships in the event while a Golden Bear.

Recent Cal grad Malaina Payton placed 12th in the women’s long jump with a mark of 19-6 ¼.

Stanford

Stanford alum and now Nike athlete Kori Carter continues to roll in the women’s 400m hurdles with a second-place finish and automatic qualification into Sunday's final. It’s gotta be the Air Jordan spikes she’s rocking.

Former Card standout Garrett Heath made a hard move for the win in the final of the men’s 1500m, but was unable to hold off a late surge in the final meters, falling to ninth place overall in 3:40.28. Heath is currently training with the Brooks Beasts in Seattle.

USC

Former USC star Bryshon Nellum will toe the line in the semis of the men’s 200m Sunday after finishing third in heat one in 20.68. The 2012 Olympic Games 4x400m silver medalist was a two-time Pac-12 outdoor champion and won the 400m title at last year’s NCAA outdoor championships.

NCAA runner-up Aleec Harris continues to roll on the track with a second-place finish in the first round in heat two of the men’s 110m hurdles. He will automatically advance to the semis Sunday.

Former Trojan Ryan Wilson ran the second-fastest time of the day (13.31) to automatically advance to Sunday's semis of the 110m hurdles. Logan Taylor, another Trojan alum, also advances to the semifinal of the men’s 110m hurdles after finishing fifth in heat two in 13.80.

Trojan alum and 2013 NCAA champion Reggie Wyatt cruised to an automatic qualifier in heat two of the men’s 400m hurdles with a second-place finish behind four-time U.S. outdoor champion Bershawn Jackson.

USC alum Alitta Boyd reached 20-9 ¼ in the women’s long jump final for an eighth-place finish overall. She finished eighth in the triple jump at last year’s championships and eighth at the 2013 NCAA outdoor championships.

Former USC standout and 2012 Olympic Games 4x400m silver medalist Josh Mance battled to a runner-up finish in the final of the men’s 400m with a time of 44.89, just behind Gil Roberts’ 44.53.

Washington State

Coug alum and 2011 U.S. outdoor champ Jeshua Anderson advanced to the final of the men’s 400m hurdles with a fourth-place finish in heat one in a time of 50.54.

For full results of the 2014 USATF Outdoor Championships, visit USATF.org.

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