USATF Women’s 100 — An Extra 40 Meters Just Fine

Generally thought of as a 60m specialist, Melissa Jefferson (4) did just fine at the full century distance. (KEVIN MORRIS)

UPSETS ARE RELATIVE, and so was one of the biggest in the first two days of the nationals, the women’s 100.

If Melissa Jefferson had been running 40m shorter under a roof, she would have appeared in the T&FN premeet formchart. That’s in the Coastal Carolina junior’s wheelhouse, where she won the 60 at the indoor NCs.

As for outdoors, she had broken 11 seconds in the 100 twice before Friday, including winning the Sun Belt in a PR 10.88 that preceded an 11.24 for 8th at the NCAAs. Though that 10.88 was No. 4 in the USA coming in, she did not appear in our predicted top 10, the fate of every collegiate 8th–placer.

After a 10.82 in the semis put her in lane 4 for the final, she broke 11 again in the biggest race of her life, running a windy (+2.9) 10.69 to win her first USATF championship.

Jefferson said her NCAA 8th, which wasn’t out of line with her history coming into that meet, set her up for this one: “One of my teammates told me not to worry, I did what I needed to do at the NCAAs and I realized that one had to be sacrificed for the other. If I had done well at NCAAs I might not be standing here right now. I’m grateful.”

The final was tight from gun to tape, from lane 1 to 8. Jefferson broke first, but chart-projected No. 2 Aleia Hobbs and No. 4 TeeTee Terry pulled ahead at the midpoint and seemed likely to duel to the end. Instead Jefferson shifted to a new gear, charged into contention and won the lean over Hobbs, 10.69w–10.72w. Terry, who led at the halfway point by an inch, came in 3rd in 10.74. The top 7 all broke 11 seconds.

Hobbs, the ’18 champion, was not disappointed. “It’s an amazing feeling, one of my best feelings, my first world team, I never lost faith,” she said. “I believed in it, I’m thankful.”

Terry was also happy to be headed back to Eugene. “I made the team individually, I’m excited, my first year as a professional,” she said.

Unpredictable formchart favorite Sha’Carri Richardson, who had the fifth-fastest time in the world coming in (10.85), ran an 11.31 in the heats to finish 23rd out of 31 finishers and failed to make the semis.


WOMEN’S 100 RESULTS

FINAL (June 24; wind +2.9)

1. Melissa Jefferson (CCar) 10.69w (a-c: 7, x W; 5, 10 A);

2. Aleia Hobbs (adi) 10.72w (a-c: =8, x W; =6, x A);

3. TeeTee Terry (NikMD) 10.74w (a-c: =10, x A);

4. Tamari Davis (adi) 10.78w (a-c: 2, 2 WJ, AJ);

5. Tamara Clark (adi) 10.82w;

6. Celera Barnes (USC) 10.86w;

7. Javianne Oliver (Nik) 10.94w;

8. Brittany Brown (adi) 11.04w.

(a-c best-ever mark-for-place: 3–6, =7)

HEATS (June 23)

I(1.5)–1. Hobbs 10.88; 2. Clark 10.94 PR; 3. Marybeth Sant Price (FKETC) 10.99; 4. Oliver 11.02; 5. Destiny Smith-Barnett (DPil) 11.22; 6. Mikiah Brisco (adi) 11.29; 7. Caira Pettway (Bay) 11.34; 8. Kynnedy Flannel (Tx) 11.40.

II(2.0)–1. Terry 10.92; 2. Barnes 11.02 PR; 3. Teahna Daniels (Nik) 11.05; 4. Morolake Akinosun (adi) 11.11; 5. Symone Darius (unat) 11.17; 6. Kiara Parker (Asics) 11.21; 7. LaSarah Hargrove (Ia) 11.25; 8. Maia McCoy (StarA) 11.37.

III(0.4)–1. Davis 11.04 (x, =10 AJ);

2. Jenna Prandini (Pum) 11.18; 3. Shania Collins (unat) 11.24; 4. Jada Baylark (Ar) 11.31; 5. Sha’Carri Richardson (StarA) 11.31; 6. Anavia Battle (OhSt) 11.45; 7. Taylor Anderson (Tracks/GSTC) 11.45 PR.

IV(0.9)–1. Jefferson 11.04; 2. Brown 11.06; 3. Kayla White (Nik) 11.08; 4. Cambrea Sturgis (adi) 11.19; 5. Kortnei Johnson (Nik/Star) 11.29; 6. English Gardner (Nik) 11.32; 7. Shannon Ray (unat) 11.36; 8. Ashley Henderson (adi) 11.46.

SEMIS (June 24)

I(0.5)–1. Hobbs 10.81 PR (AL);

2. Jefferson 10.82 PR; 3. Clark 10.88 PR; 4. Oliver 10.95 PR; 5. Prandini 11.00; 6. Sant Price 11.01; 7. Sturgis 11.04; 8. Collins 11.10.

II(1.8)–1. Terry 10.87 PR;

2. Davis 10.92 (x, 5 WJ; x, 3 AJ);

3. Barnes 10.94 PR; 4. Brown 10.96 PR (10.995); 5. Daniels 10.96 (fastest non-qualifier ever) (10.996); 6. White 10.99; 7. Akinosun 11.04; 8. Darius 11.20. ◻︎

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