USATF Men’s TJ — Scott’s Opener Holds Up

A 56-foot first-round mark was all that Donald Scott needed. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

RARE EXCITEMENT in the first flight centered on comebacking Christian Taylor, whose attempt for a third Olympic gold ended when he ruptured his Achilles last May.

Owning a WC Wild Card for winning his fourth World title in ’19, he took the lead on his first attempt and led at 53-5 (16.28) after flight 1 was done.

The field included just three who had reached the Worlds standard of 56-2¾ (17.14) — Olympians Donald Scott and Will Claye and Chris Carter.

As expected, Taylor’s lead didn’t last long. Who else but Claye — Taylor’s longtime rival and former Florida teammate — did the inevitable, leading off flight 2 at 53-6½ (16.32). That mark was surpassed three jumps later by Carter’s 53-7½ (16.34) before Scott immediately responded, bounding out to 56-0 (17.07), a yearly outdoor U.S. leader.

Scott’s effort ended up as the eventual winning jump, the rest of flight 2 provided juggling to the standings. Round 2 saw Claye move from 4th to 2nd at 54-10¼ (16.72) and Chris Benard (who had a long foul in round 1) go into 3rd at 53-11¾ (16.45).

That was nothing compared to round 3. Claye improved again, this time to 55-6½ (16.93) while hitting an outdoor seasonal best to maintain 2nd. Then Benard moved to 3rd at 55-2¾ (16.83) and Carter improved to 53-10¼ (16.41) to remain in 5th before Miami’s Russell Robinson PRed at 53-11¾ (16.45) to take over 4th.

The final three rounds contributed just two place changes. One came from Tennessee’s Jalen Tate, who moved into 5th in round 4 with his PR 54-2 (16.51). The other came from Taylor, matching his yearly best of 54-3¼ (16.54) to move from 7th to overtake Tate for 5th on his final attempt.

With no additional WC qualifiers, the U.S. team is set with Scott, Claye and 7th-placer Carter joining reigning champ Taylor.

Scott, who produced the only 17-meter jumps of the day (he also had a 55-10½/17.03 effort in round 4), said he battled cramps throughout the competition. “Luckily it wasn’t in my legs — it was in my arms and stomach.”

The 30-year-old Eastern Michigan grad’s yearly best is a 56-5¾ (17.21) made in earning bronze at the World Indoors in March, and he hasn’t lost to an American in ’22. This victory marked his third USATF Outdoor crown and seventh including Indoors.

“I definitely have more in the tank for sure,” he said. “I’m ready to see it. I know it’s there. It’s about time to pop a big one.”


MEN’S TRIPLE JUMP RESULTS

(June 26; winds ranged from +2.1 to –0.8)

1. Donald Scott (adi) 56-0 (17.07)

(56-0, 54-9¼, 54-1, 55-10½, 53-11¼, 55-¾) (17.07, 16.69, 16.48, 17.03, 16.44, 16.78);

2. Will Claye (Puma/NYAC) 55-6½ (16.93)

(53-6½, 54-10¼, 55-6½, 54-10, 53-7½, 53-10¼) (16.32, 16.72, 16.93, 16.71, 16.34, 16.41);

3. Chris Benard (CVE) 55-2¾ (16.83)

(f, 53-11¾, 55-2¾, f, p, p) (f, 16.45, 16.83, f, p, p);

4. Russell Robinson (Mia) 54-7½ (16.65) PR

(53-11¾, 51-11¼, 54-7½, 52-2, 47-4½, 50-10¼) (16.45, 15.83, 16.65, 15.90, 14.44, 15.50);

5. Christian Taylor (Nik) 54-3¼ (16.54)

(52-4¾, 52-4½, 53-5, 51-10½, f, 54-3¼) (15.97, 15.96, 16.28, 15.81, f, 16.54);

6. Jalen Tate (Tn) 54-2 (16.51) PR;

7. Chris Carter (unat) 53-10¼ (16.41);

8. Christopher Welch (TxT) 53-3 (16.23);

9. Isaiah Griffith (CVE) 52-8 (16.05); 10. Keyshawn King (Stan) 52-7½ (16.04); 11. Qwazon Alkhaliq (NnCo) 52-4½ (15.96); 12. Chauncey Chambers (VaT) 52-3¾ (15.94); 13. Jalen Seals (TxT) 52-1¼w (15.88); 14. Henry Kiner (PittSt) 51-11¾ (15.84); 15. James Carter (Ia) 51-10 (15.80); 16. Anthony Applequist (unat) 51-8¼ (15.75). ◻︎

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