LONDON — Arizona senior Brigetta Barrett won the silver medal Saturday in the women’s high jump, finishing with a personal-best clearance of 6 feet, 8 inches. She became the first UA track and field athlete to medal at the Olympics since Michael Bates and Sandra Farmer in 1992.
“I’m definitely thankful I have the medal, but it is really what comes with the medal that means a lot,” Barrett said. “I know that God has brought me so far and I know where I started, so to be able to stand here and look back on the journey, that is what it really means for me. My mom is in the stands smiling and healthy, so it’s great.”
Barrett’s jump in the finals was the best ever by a collegiate female in the high jump. The previous mark was also held by Barrett, as she cleared 6-7 at the U.S. Olympic trials on July 1. Since she did not post the mark during the collegiate season, it does not count as the collegiate record. Barrett is the only Arizona athlete to ever medal in the women’s high jump.
UA volunteer assistant coach Bernard Lagat also competed Saturday in the finals of the men’s 5,000 meters but missed out on a medal by finishing in fourth place, just 0.63 seconds off the bronze-medal time. Lagat tripped and lost his balance around the last turn, taking away most of his momentum, but still managed to finish strong, clocking a time of 13:42.99.
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“I was very confident,” Lagat said. “I was just trying to go as I hard as I could. It would have been better to have been on the podium. The fourth spot is tough, but I have been the most blessed person in my career.”