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Distance Duo Rolls

Jun 9, 2021

EUGENE, Ore. – The first day of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships went spectacularly well for Stanford on Wednesday at Hayward Field. 

Charles Hicks was among 10 competitors to break the existing meet record in the 10,000 meters, placing seventh in 27:47.63. Hicks, a freshman in eligibility, ran his lifetime best by 37 seconds to move to No. 2 on Stanford's all-time performers' list and No. 6 in the Pac-12.

Now a first-team All-American, Hicks, 19, appears to have broken his own United Kingdom under-20 record and came within a second of the legendary Dave Bedford's British under-23 standard of 27:47.0 from 1971. Hicks, a dual citizen, was born in London and moved to Jacksonville, Florida, at age 12.

In the 3,000 steeplechase, true freshman Ky Robinson came in with the 20th-fastest season-best time and won his 12-runner semifinal in 8:36.29. Robinson ran a lifetime best by four seconds to break the Stanford freshman record for the third time. Robinson jumps to No. 4 on the all-time Stanford list. 

Robinson will be among 12 entrants in Friday's final, at 5:24 p.m. Hicks will race in the 5,000 final shortly after, at 6:55.

It appears Robinson, 19, from Brisbane, Australia, broke the Australian and Oceania under-20 records of 8:40.62 held by Glen Stojanovic since 1992.


Ky Robinson. Photo by David Hicks.

Hicks, the Pac-12 10,000 champion, did not hold back even with the fast early pace. Hicks stayed in a lead pack of 14 for most of race, hovering between fourth to 10th place, and stayed with the pack as it slowly disintegrated over the final two laps. 

Hicks held tough until a group of six gapped pushed ahead at the bell. Still, Hicks closed with a 61-second final lap and finished four spots ahead of fading early leader David Kiptoo of Iowa State, the NCAA indoor 5,000 champ. The top 10 all were under the meet record of 28:01.30 set by UTEP's Suleiman Nyambui in 1979.

Robinson's race was a wild one. He was eighth at the bell and though he moved up two places on the backstretch, he still needed to move up to finish in the top five and advance automatically on time. 

At the final water jump, leader Alexander Korczynski of Northeastern stumbled and fell, barreling into Eastern Kentucky's Ahmed Jaziri. Suddenly, Robinson was fourth. But rather than protect his position, he continued to push and took the lead down the stretch, winning easily. 

The four-day meet continues Thursday with women's events. Five Cardinal are set to compete – Christina Aragon, Ella Donaghu, and Julia Heymach in the 1,500 semifinals, Alexa Rossum in the 100 and 200 semifinals, and Virginia Miller in the javelin final.


Charles Hicks. Photo by Chuck Aragon.

* * *    

NCAA Championships
At Hayward Field
Wednesday's results
3,000 steeplechase semifinal
– Ht.2: 1, Ky Robinson (Stanford) 8:36.29 (PB; Stanford frosh record; No. 4 Stanford all-time).
10,000 final – 1, Patrick Dever (Tulsa) 27:41.87; 7, Charles Hicks (Stanford) 27:47.63 (PB; No. 2 Stanford all-time).

Stanford's Schedule

3:46 p.m.: Women's 1,500 semifinals (top 5, plus 2) – Ht.2: Christina Aragon, Ella Donaghu, Julia Heymach.
4:45 p.m.: Women's javelin final – Virginia Miller.
4:46 p.m.: Women's 100 semifinals (top 2, plus 2) – Ht.3: Alexa Rossum. 
5:44 p.m.: Women's 200 semifinals (top 2, plus 2) – Ht.3: Alexa Rossum.
Noon: Women's heptathlon 100 hurdles – Sec.3: Allie Jones.
1 p.m.: Women's heptathlon high jump – Fl.1: Allie Jones.
3 p.m.: Women's heptathlon shot put – Fl.2: Allie Jones. 
5:24 p.m.: Men's 3,000 steeplechase final – Ky Robinson.
6:43 p.m.: Women's heptathlon 200 – Sec.1: Allie Jones. 
6:55 p.m.: Men's 5,000 final – Charles Hicks.
11 a.m.: Women's heptathlon long jump – Fl.2: Allie Jones. 
12:15 p.m.: Women's heptathlon javelin –Fl.2: Allie Jones. 
3:11 p.m.: Women's 1,500 final.
3:52 p.m.: Women's 100 final.
4:37 p.m.: Women's 200 final.
4:43 p.m.: Women's heptathlon 800 – Allie Jones. 
4:55 p.m.: Women's 5,000 final – Ella Donaghu, Julia Heymach.