USATF Women’s 100 Hurdles —A 3-Peat For Harrison

Running on one of her favorite tracks, Keni Harrison remained undefeated on the Blue Oval. (VICTOR SAILER/PHOTO RUN)

A LINEUP HARDER to crack than the ’27 Yankees made the women’s 100H final one of the most star-studded of the meet, featuring 5 of the top 10 world rankers from ’18 alongside the ’16 Olympic silver and bronze medalists and the recent NCAA 3rd-placer.

Hefty headwinds in the first round slowed the times without taking any major casualties and reigning Olympic champ Brianna McNeal was still able to clock an impressive 12.75 into a 3.5mps breeze to lead all qualifiers. Nia Ali edged McNeal for the win in the first semi in 12.78, but NCAA finalists Payton Chadwick and Cortney Jones ran out of gas and failed to advance. WR holder Keni Harrison put down her marker as favorite to score a hat trick of consecutive U.S. titles with a blistering 12.54 in the second semi, which eliminated NCAA runner-up Chanel Brissett of USC.

The lane draw for the final had Harrison (3), McNeal (4), Ali (5) and Christina Clemons (6) in the preferred center lanes. Those four all got out well and touched down over hurdle 1 almost simultaneously. They remained in virtual lockstep over the next three barriers before Harrison started to edge away from Ali and Sharika Nelvis on the inside.

At the halfway point, Harrison had a half-stride lead over Ali, and she stretched that to a full length by the eighth hurdle as McNeal drew level with Ali. From there it was all Harrison. The World Indoor 60H champion from last year dipped at the line to win in 12.44, 0.11 in front of a charging Ali, who claimed silver in 12.55, her fastest time in 2 years, with McNeal 3rd in 12.61. Nelvis (12.66) and Queen Claye (12.68), also dipped under 12.70 into the 1.2 wind, but were relegated to almost status.

Keeping her Drake Stadium undefeated finals streak alive with her sixth win on the Blue Oval, the 26-year-old Harrison said, “Once I knew the Trials were going to be here, I knew I had never lost on this track and it’s a fast track. I knew I love this track. It boosted my confidence up. Technically, I don’t think I got out, I floated the first two hurdles. I realized I had to go, so I pushed it into gear and tried to make a gap. I have been struggling with my beginning, but I have a while before Worlds.”

Ali, with her two young children in tow, said, “It was a season’s best. I feel like I just kind of let go somewhere in the middle of the race and let my body take control, and I made it happen.”


USATF WOMEN’S 100H RESULTS

FINAL

(July 27; wind –1.2)

1. Keni Harrison (adi) 12.44;

2. Nia Ali (Nik) 12.55;

3. Brianna McNeal (Nik) 12.61;

4. Sharika Nelvis (adi) 12.66;

5. Queen Claye (Asics) 12.68;

6. Tonea Marshall (LSU) 12.81;

7. Kristi Castlin (Nik) 12.86;

8. Christina Clemons (adi) 13.01.

LANES

1. Nelvis; 2. Claye; 3. Harrison; 4. McNeal; 5. Ali; 6. Clemons; 7. Castlin; 8. Marshall

REACTION TIMES

Claye 0.143; Nelvis 0.148; Marshall 0.152; Clemons 0.155; Harrison 0.160; McNeal 0.172; Ali & Castlin 0.183

HEATS

(July 26)

I(-1.0)–1. Clemons 12.77; 2. Chanel Brissett (USC) 13.01; 3. Gabriele Cunningham (NCSt) 13.04; 4. Cortney Jones (unat) 13.04; 5. Evonne Britton (EvoTC) 13.27; 6. MacKenzie Hill (unat) 13.65.

II(-2.5)–1. Ali 12.92; 2. Marshall 13.10; 3. Tiara McMinn (Miami (Fl)) 13.25; 4. Bridgette Owens (unat) 13.29; 5. Amber Hughes (unat) 13.35; 6. Tawnie Moore (unat) 13.83.

III(-3.5)–1. McNeal 12.75; 2. Claye 12.79; 3. Tiffani McReynolds (unat) 12.95; 4. Castlin 13.23; 5. Tia Jones (adi) 13.33; 6. Chanel Freeman (unat) 13.98.

IV(-3.7)–1. Harrison12.91; 2. Nelvis 13.22; 3. Payton Chadwick (Asics) 13.58; 4. Jade Barber (unat) 13.72; 5. Alaysha Johnson (TxT) 13.77.

SEMIS

(July 27)

I(-1.8)–1. Ali 12.78; 2. McNeal 12.81; 3. Claye 12.89; 4. Nelvis 12.90; 5. McReynolds 12.98; 6. Chadwick 13.18; 7. Owens 13.39; 8. Jones 13.39.

II(-0.9)–1. Harrison 12.54; 2. Clemons 12.82; 3. Castlin 12.94; 4. Marshall 12.95; 5. Brissett 12.96; 6. Cunningham 13.23; 7. McMinn 13.49;… fs—Britton. ◻︎

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