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Centrowitz grabs Bronze

Matt Centrowitz grabs Bronze

Matt Centrowitz grabs Bronze

DAEGU, South Korea – The hits keep coming for Team USA with another four medals, including gold in the women’s 4x400m relay, at the 13th IAAF World Outdoor Track and Field Championships Saturday night.

Matt Centrowitz, who captured both NCAA and USA Outdoor championship titles earlier this year, got things rolling for Team USA by earning a surprising bronze medal in the men’s 1,500m.

Sanya Richards-Ross and Allyson Felix earned their third straight gold medals in the women’s 4×400, combining efforts with Jessica Beard and Francena McCorory in allowing Team USA to continue its dominance in the race, while posting a world leading time of 3:18.09. Team USA has now won 10 medals in the relay, including six gold.

Appearing in her fourth World Championships Felix has now won nine career medals, including seven gold, while ties her with Jearl Miles Clark of Team USA, for the second highest number of medals ever won by a woman at the World Outdoor Championships. Jamaica’s Merlene Ottey owns the women’s record for career medals won at 14.

The 4×400 relay also gave the Team USA women its fifth gold medal of this year’s World Championship meet, tying the most ever accumulated by American team (1993, 1995, 2005).

For just the third time in World Championship history, Team USA collected two medals in the women’s hurdles with Danielle Carruthers and Dawn Harper earning silver and bronze.

Walter Dix pocketed his second silver medal in the sprints, placing second behind world-record holder Usain Bolt in the men’s 200m to conclude the Saturday night program which saw champions crowned in six events. Earlier, Dix placed second in the 100 last Sunday.

Matt Centrowitz, who captured both NCAA and USA Outdoor championship titles earlier this year, got things rolling for Team USA by earning a surprising bronze medal in the men’s 1,500m.

Team USA pushed its nation leading hardware total to 21 medals, including 10 gold, seven silver and four bronze. That is just one medal shy of equaling its total medal count of 22 at the 2009 World Outdoor Championship.

With the hammer throw, 800m and 4×100 relay remaining, Team USA’s women already have 11 medals, tying their all-time World Championships high of 11 from 1993.

Women’s 4x400m Final
Sanya Richards-Ross (Austin, Texas) ran the third fastest leadoff leg in history with a 49.2 second split before handing off to four-time World Championship medalist Allyson Felix (Santa Clarita, Calif.), who ran a 49.3 second leg. The duo enabled Team USA to own a 15-meter lead at the halfway point.

Team USA’s winning time of 3:18.09 was a world best and the fastest relay time ever run in September.

Jessica Beard (College Station, Texas) ran the third leg in 49.9. Francena McCorory (Hampton, Va.) held off Jamaica’s Shericka Williams with a 49.6 anchor leg giving Team USA its sixth gold medal in the relay.

Women’s 100m Hurdles Final
Team USA drew the last three outside lanes. In a photo-finish Danielle Carruthers (Kennesaw, Ga.), running in lane six, and Dawn Harper (Los Angeles, Calif.), in lane eight, placed second and third, respectively, being credited with lifetime bests of 12.47. Harper atoned for a seventh-place finish in the 2009 World Championships.

Kellie Wells (Orlando, Fla.), who entered the meet owning a world leading mark of 12.50 en route to winning the U.S. Championships, hit the fifth and sixth barriers before tumbling into the seventh hurdle and did not finish. Wells, competing in her first world championships, earned a ticket into the finals by finishing second in the first heat in 12.79

Australia’s Sally Pearson, running in lane three, set a championship record in winning the race in 12.28 which also is the world’s fourth fastest time ever.

Men’s 200m Final
Walter Dix (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), running in lane four, was even with world record holder Usain Bolt at the turn, before settling for a silver medal with a season best time of 19.70 seconds. That clocking was the fastest time ever run by an American at the World Outdoor Championships.

It marked Team USA’s 18th medal earned in the 200 at the World Championships.
Bolt, defending his world championship title, ran a world leading time of 19.40 seconds.

Men’s 1500m Final
Nick Willis of New Zealand took the lead in men’s 1500m, and the 21-year-old Matt Centrowitz (Arnold, Md.) held on right behind him in second. However, they could not hold the pace and at 600m they began to drift farther back into the field. Centrowitz, the U.S. champion, ran through the bell lap in the middle of the pack but never let the leaders completely break away. As the men rounded the final curve, Centrowitz unleashed a fearsome kick on the outside and moved into third place, winning the bronze in 3:36.08.

Team USA has now medaled in three World Championships in a row, with the most recent being Bernard Lagat’s bronze in 2009. Centrowitz is the youngest American to ever medal, and was the youngest of the field, which curiously saw the three youngest athletes become the three athletes on the podium.

Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop won the race in 3:35.69, becoming just the third runner in history to win a gold medal in the 1,500 at the Olympics and World Championships.

Women’s High Jump Final
Brigetta Barrett (Tucson, Ariz.), the youngest competitor in the field at 20-years-old, finished 10th at 1.93m/6-4. She cleared the opening height of 1.89m/6-2.25 and then needed her third jump to clear 1.93m. World leader Anna Chicherova from Russia captured the gold clearing 2.03m/6-8 on her first attempt.