Arizona's Brigetta Barrett wins high jump at USA outdoors to earn berth in World Championships.
By STEVE RIVERAFS Arizona
Arizona's Brigetta Barrett won the women’s high jump on Saturday at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, leaping 6 feet, 8.25 inches.
Barrett, a 2012 Olympic silver medalist who recently won the NCAA outdoor title in the high jump, set a personal best with the jump while winning her 26th consecutive meet. She’s now qualified for the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia, next month.
"She always gets it done, "Arizona head coach Fred Harvey said in a statement. "I’m very excited for her -- she was awesome today. She managed everything extremely well. She got the crowd going and got everybody involved in the high jump competition. She represented herself, Arizona and now (sponsor) Nike really well. She did some great things at Arizona, and what a great way to start her professional career heading into the World Championships. "
Barrett’s mark is the best in the world for the 2013 outdoor season. She will represent Team USA at the World Championships for the second consecutive year. Barrett’s previous personal-best clearance was 6-8 (2.03m) at the London Olympics. Her clearance of 6-8.25 was only a half-inch shy of the American record of 6-8.75, set by Chaunte Lowe in Des Moines in 2010. Barrett’s clearance is now the second best in U.S. history.
"It was a great meet," Barrett said. "I was very happy with how I jumped. I wanted to keep going and break the American record, but (Arizona assistant coach and Barrett’s personal coach) Sheldon (Blockburger) shut me down, which is fine, because the ultimate goal is to win at the World Championships. I feel great. I don’t have any pain in my body and I’m really happy with how everything went."
In addition to Barrett's win, Arizona's Georganne Moline, who finished second in the 400-meter hurdles at the NCAA outdoors recently, finished first overall in the 400 hurdles semifinals Saturday in a time of 54.82. Moline won her heat and qualified for the finals. Her personal-best time of 53.72 is No. 3 in the world.
"I wanted to keep my streak of winning each round going into the final, " Moline said. "The objective is always to win, and I know that if I do that, a fast time will come. My race went well but again, I need to make sure I get off the hurdles the way I do in practice. That is especially important if there is a tailwind like there was today. Overall, I feel awesome and I can’t wait for the final."
Said Harvey: “Her race was excellent. It was a difficult situation with the wind, but she is learning how to manage her stride down the back stretch. The bottom line is that she won and has the top time going into the final. That is the most important thing, because it gives her the best lane and puts her in great shape to make this U.S. team.”
Arizona senior-to-be Alyssa Hasslen competed in the women’s shot put on Saturday, earning a third-place finish with a season-best toss of 59-4.75 (18.10m). She also will advance to Moscow.
And senior-to-be Julie Labonté won the discus competition at the Canadian National Championships on Saturday. She earned the title with a throw of 173-3 (52.81m) in her last discus throw of the season; her primary event is the shot put.