Jamaica and Oregon sprinter, Kemba Nelson, picked up where she left off last season with a narrow win in the women’s 60m at the Cougar Classic Invitational in Spokane.

The reigning NCAA champion only narrowly got the better of Double Pillar Athletics sprinter Destiny Smith-Barnett.  In fact, both athletes were given the same time of 7.19 after crossing the line but it was Nelson who had the better time when the photo finish was used.  Oregon’s Jadyn Mays was third in 7.27. 

Elsewhere jumper Lamara Distin, a sophomore at Texas A&M, cleared an indoor personal-best 1.88m to win the women’s high jump at the two-day Ted Nelson Invitational.  Nissi Kabongo of Stephen Austin recorded the second-best mark with 1.85m, while Texas’ Allyson Andress was third with 1.73.

Shericka Jackson set tongues a-wagging on Thursday night when she ran a new personal best to advance to Friday’s semi-final of the 100m at the Jamaica’s National Championships at the National Stadium in Kingston.

Yohan Blake, the 2011 World Champion and double Olympic silver medalist showed glimpses of the Beast, as he also advanced to the semi-finals of the men’s 100m with the fastest time.

Jackson, 26, a 400m specialist, clocked 10.91 and was the fastest among the women. That takes some doing considering that the preliminary round also featured four-time world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who cruised to victory in her heat in 10.97.

Elaine Thompson-Herah, the 2016 double Olympic champion also looked to be in incredibly great shape as she won her heat in 10.96.  Briana Williams, 2018 World U20, was also a picture of good form in winning her heat in 11.00.

Also among the 16 women advancing to the semi-finals were Natasha Morrison, who was second to Jackson in 11.06 while Shian Hyde was a distant third in 11.50.

Sashalee Forbes advanced from Fraser-Pryce’s heat having run 11.13, close to her personal best of 11.10 while finishing second to the two-time Olympic 100m champion. Remona Burchell, the 2014 NCAA champion, showed the form that made her champion clocking 11.14, a brand new season-best and her fastest time since she ran 11.07 in 2017.

Natalliah Whyte (11.13) and Shockoria Wallace (11.22) advanced from Thompson-Herah’s heat while Kemba Nelson ran 11.05 and Kevona Davis (11.19) advanced from Williams’ heat.

Briana Williams, the national U20 record holder at 10.97, showed that she will not be outrun by anyone cruising to an 11.00 clocking to also advance from Heat 4 along with Kemba Nelson (11.05) and Kevona Davis (11.19).

 Ashanti Moore (11.15), Kashieka Cameron (11.28), Jodean Williams (11.45) and Schillonie Calvert-Powell (11.53) are also through to Friday’s semis.

Meanwhile, Blake looked like the sprinter of a decade ago when only Usain Bolt was faster when he eased to a 10.03 clocking to win his heat. Davonte Burnett was the second-fastest through to the semi-finals when he won his heat in 10.05.

Burnett, whose father is Jamaican, grew up in Massachusetts and attends the University of Southern California. He was fifth in the NCAA Division I finals in 10.19.

Julian Forte and Oblique Seville both looked good while crossing the line together in their heat in 10.08, similar to what happened in the opening heat with Tyquendo Tracey and Nigel Ellis, who were both credited with 10.13.

 Romario Williams, who clocked 10.27, also advanced from that heat.

Also advancing to Friday’s semi-finals were Senoj-jay Givans (10.20), Oshane Bailey (10.26), Andre Ewers (10.22), Bryan Levell (10.25), Jelani Walker (10.32), Michael Campbell (10.25), Ashanie Smith (10.25), Jevaughn Minzie (10.27) and Ramone Barnswell (10.32).

Kemba Nelson has characterized her first season competing on the American collegiate circuit as ‘incredible’ after her fourth-place finish in the 100m at the NCAA Division I Outdoor season that concluded in Eugene, Oregon on Saturday.

Focus on details helped Kemba Nelson run a personal best 100m time and a decent 200m at last weekend’s West Coast Classic in Tucson.

Nelson, a junior at the University of Oregon, clocked 11.18 to win the 100m well clear of teammate Jasmine Reed who stopped the clock at 11:48. California’s Ezzine Abba ran 11.52 for third.

An hour later, Nelson would finish second in the 200m, beaten by UCLA’s Shae Anderson who clocked 22.96 for the win. Nelson ran a creditable 23.03, sandwiched by Anderson’s teammate Makenzy Pierre-Webster, who clocked 23.51.

Nelson expressed her satisfaction afterwards.

“I am happy with races! Big PR for me. Great opener as well,” said the former UTech sprinter, whose previous best was 11.49 in Kingston in June 2019.

“In the 100, I was more focused on execution. Staying patient with the drive phase and not rushing the race.”

She wasn’t too perturbed by her 200m loss seeing that her time was also a personal best.

“Though it was an hour after the 100 it was a good race too. I definitely have a lot to work on. But it’s a part of the sport. You win some, you lose some. Just have to get back to work.”

Nelson is having an outstanding first year on the US Collegiate circuit. In March she was the NCAA 60m Indoor title in a personal best 7.05s, a time that made her the fifth-fastest Jamaican woman indoors behind Merlene Ottey, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce

Jamaica’s Kemba Nelson has designs on being in Tokyo for the Olympic Games this summer and based on what she has done so far at the University of Oregon she believes she has a good shot at it.

Oregon’s Kemba Nelson continued to demonstrate how rapid progress at Oregon on Saturday when she ran a windy 22.79 over 200m to win at the 42nd Annual Aztec Invitational in San Diego, California.

Oregon’s Kemba Nelson ran a collegiate-leading 7.05 to win the 60m title on the final day of the 2021 NCAA Division I Nationals on Saturday night.

In a final where three Caribbean nations – Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda and Grenada – were represented, Nelson stormed to victory, pulling away from the stacked field to produce a massive personal best that is both a meet and championship record, eclipsing the 7.07 held jointly by Oregon’s Hannah Cunliffe and LSU Aleia Hobbs.

The time, a school record, was also just 0.03 off the 7.02 facility record set by Tiana Madison (Bartoletta) in 2012.

It was also the second-fastest time in the world this year behind the 7.03 set by Switzerland’s AJla Del Ponte at the recent European Indoor Championships in Torun.

USC’s Twanisha Terry, the pre-race favourite, who went into the final with the fastest time, 7.09, won the silver medal in 7.14s.

It was a Jamaican 1-3 as former Jamaica national junior record holder Kiara Grant took third in 7.16.

Antigua’s Joella Lloyd, who two weeks ago set a new national record of 7.15 was sixth in 7.23 while Grenada’s Halle Hazzard, a senior at Virginia, was eighth on 7.27.

Nelson, 21, attended Mt Alvernia High School in Montego Bay, Jamaica and transferred to Oregon in October 2020, having spent her first three years of college at the University of Technology in Kingston.

In doing so, she became the first Jamaican-born female athlete to attend the University of Oregon, having expressed a desire to compete in NCAA-level athletics.

Having fulfilled her desire, she expressed her delight on Instagram afterwards saying, “What a way to close out the indoor season.”

 

 

 

Jamaica’s Kemba Nelson, a junior at the University of Oregon won the 60m dash at the Tyson Invitational held at the Randal Tyson Track Centre in Fayetteville, Arkansas earlier this evening.

Jamaica sprinter and Oregon junior Kemba Nelson clocked a blistering 7.19 to claim victory in the women’s 60 at the Razorback Invitational in Fayetteville, Arkansas on Saturday.

In surging to the line, the 20-year-old turned the tables on USC all-American TeeTee Terry.  Terry, the 2019 NCAA champion in the event, finished second in 7.24. Oregon senior Brianna Duncan was third in 7.30.  Nelson’s time is seventh fastest all-time at Oregon.

On the previous day in the 200m, it was Terry who took top billing finishing in 23.35, ahead of Nelson who ran second in 23.53.

Nelson, the national junior double sprint champion in 2019, joined Oregon last fall after three years at the University of Technology (Utech), in Jamaica.

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