Florida super-soph Grant Holloway has run NCAA Championships hurdles events four times; twice indoors and twice out. But roof or not, he has always crossed the line first.
Despite rain and a negative wind of 1.1, the precocious Gator stormed to victory Friday evening in 13.42 barely holding off hard-charging senior redshirt David Kendziera of Illinois who finished just 0.01 behind in 13.43. Grabbing the bronze was LSU frosh Damion Thomas, who leaned in for a 13.45 clocking. Florida State’s Trey Cunningham, another yearling and the Junior 60H recordholder indoors, closed well to grab 4th in 13.64. Senior Antoine Lloyd of Nebraska edged out senior Ruebin Walters of Alabama 13.94–13.95. Trinidadian Walters had led qualifiers out of the semis with a speedy 13.38. Last year’s runner-up, he was charted to finish higher, but it was not to be this night.
Footballer John Burt of Texas ran well in the semis (13.46w) but was unable to duplicate that performance in the final (14.01).Two steppers who looked like possible finalists but missed the cut were Daniel Roberts of Kentucky—who came to Eugene with 13.27 credentials—and Houston’s Amere Lattin (13.59) who was seeking valuable team points.
The favored Holloway’s victory was the first back-to-back win since another Gator, John Walker, accomplished that feat in ’04 & ’05. In a post-race interview Holloway said he was “rested up and prayed up” and motivated to do well because as the favorite there as well he had failed to deliver his expected big long jump points in Wednesday’s final. He also gave a big shout-out to his mother.
Holloway came into the meet with a 13.15 PR that was not only the collegiate list leader, but also topped the American and World charts, so the question that many fans were asking was, “Will he be back in a Florida uniform in ’19 or will he turn pro?”
NCAA MEN’S 110 HURDLE RESULTS
(June 08; wind -1.1)
1. **Grant Holloway (Fl) 13.42;
2. David Kendziera (Il) 13.43;
3. ***Damion Thomas’ (LSU) 13.45;
4. ***Trey Cunningham (FlSt) 13.64;
5. Antoine Lloyd (Nb) 13.94;
6. Ruebin Walters’ (Al) 13.95;
7. **Luke Siedhoff (Nb) 13.99;
8. *John Burt (Tx) 14.01.
SEMIS (June 06)
I(2.2)–1. Holloway 13.42w; 2. Burt 13.46w; 3. Siedhoff 13.71w;
4. *Chris Douglas (Ia) 13.76w; 5. *Israel Nelson (OR) 13.81w; 6. **William Session (In) 13.90w; 7. Ro’Derick Spears (MsSt) 14.01w; 8. *Patrick Prince (UTSA) 14.10w.
II(0.6)–1. Walters’ 13.38; 2. Lloyd 13.61;
3. *Dayo Akindele (Kenn) 13.73 PR; 4. **Jaylan McConico (IlSt) 13.75; 5. **Braxton Canady (Or) 13.78; 6. Ashtyn Davis (Cal) 13.87; 7. Larry Donald (Ar) 13.93; 8. *Amere Lattin (Hous) 18.98.
III(-0.8)–1. Kendziera 13.43;
2. Thomas’ 13.44 (WJL);
3. Cunningham 13.64;
4. *Chad Zallow (Young) 13.88; 5. **Matt Moore (Syr) 14.00; 6. ***Cory Poole (Fl) 14.40;… dq—**Daniel Roberts (Ky);… dnf—**Aaron Lewis (Copp). □