Elinor Purrier Upsets Defending NCAA XC Champ Karissa Schweizer At Pre-Nats

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Elinor Purrier of New Hampshire out-kicked defending NCAA cross country champion Karissa Schweizer in the final stages of the adidas DI Pre-National Invitational in Louisville, Kentucky. Her winning time of 19:28.43 matched Molly Seidel's 2015 NCAA-winning time from Tom Sawyer State Park and distanced Schweizer, a three-time NCAA champion last year, by a full second.


No. 7-ranked Dani Jones of Colorado out-battled No. 5 Katie Rainsberger of Oregon for third, 19:33 to 19:42, though Rainsberger's No. 4-ranked Ducks enjoyed a 28-point win over No. 1 Colorado. Oregon's Lilli Burdon (seventh, 20:00.6), Carmela Cardama Baez (15th, 20:09.1), Jessica Hull (16th, 20:10), and Emma Abrahamson (30th, 20:26.6) have now proven they are not only capable of defending what was a surprise national title in 2016, but may even be the favorites to do so.

Caroline Sang of Charlotte -- an NCAA 5K finalist last spring who has never made the national cross country meet -- was the race's early leader with Purrier, Schweizer of Missouri, Jones, Sharon Lokedi of Kansas, Winny Koech of UTEP, plus Oregon's Rainsberger and Burdon in tow with Hull not far behind. Schweizer took control around three miles, which she passed just under 16 minutes, but couldn't shake the women around her; by then the group had winnowed to Purrier, Rainsberger, and Jones.

Just as in the men's race, the best action happened in the final quarter mile as Purrier -- an All-American miler and steeplechaser who was seventh at NCAA XC in 2016 -- overtook Schweizer. The Missouri senior hung on her shoulder, as if waiting to time her final surge, but Purrier wouldn't hear of that as she was smooth to the finish while Schweizer flailed in fatigue.

It should be noted that while Schweizer was nearly perfect at NCAAs last year -- winning titles in cross country, the indoor 5K, and outdoor 5K -- she's not without peer as Jones defeated her for the indoor 3K title and Amy-Eloise Neale of Washington beat her over 5K at the Stanford Invitational. She got over the 5K loss by decimating the NCAA outdoor 5K and placing fourth in the event at USAs. Don't be surprised if this mid-season loss makes her more determined than ever.

All The Best Things That Happened In The NCAA This Weekend

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Three collegiate records highlighted NCAA action this weekend, as UTEP sophomore Michael Saruni, Texas Tech junior Vincent Crisp and Georgia senior Keturah Orji set standards in their respective events.

Keturah Orji Breaks American, Collegiate Indoor Record For Triple Jump

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Georgia's Keturah Orji broke her own American and NCAA indoor records in the triple jump on Saturday with a leap of 14.53m/47-8 at the Clemson Invitational.

Katelyn Tuohy Shatters Mary Cain's National High School Record For 5K


North Rockland High School, New York, sophomore Katelyn Tuohy ran the fastest 5K ever for a high school girl — indoors or outdoors — today with her winning time of 15:37.12 at the VA Showcase in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Christian Coleman Crushes 60m World Record In His Season Opener


Today, in his first meet of the year, Christian Coleman set the bar for his season incredibly high and put the world on notice. 

Vincent Crisp Runs Fastest Collegiate Time Ever For 600 Yards

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Texas Tech junior Vincent Crisp posted the fastest indoor collegiate mark of all time over 600 yards on Friday. Competing at the Texas Tech Red Raider Invitational in Lubbock, Texas, Crisp ran 1:08.16 and held off TCU’s Derrick Mokaleng, who ran 1:08.18.

Michael Saruni Runs World-Best In Indoor 600m

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On Friday night, Michael Saruni continued his hot start to 2018. The UTEP sophomore ran a world-best time of 1:14.79 in the 600m at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Invitational in Albuquerque.  

Austin, Texas, Chasing History With Olympic Trials Bid


Austin, Texas, has hosted the NCAA track and field championships and currently stages one of the largest track meets of the calendar, the Texas Relays. The city has a robust road racing scene, bolstered by the presence of elite athletes and high-level training groups. But Austin has never hosted a USA track and field championship event — not for any distance on the roads, cross country or track and field. And certainly not the Olympic Trials. 

Justin Gatlin Switches Coaches After Investigation Uncovers Doping Scandal


Justin Gatlin has officially begun his career after Dennis Mitchell. Reuters reported on Friday that Gatlin is being coached by Brooks Johnson in Orlando, Florida. Gatlin fired Mitchell in December after Mitchell was implicated in a doping sting facilitated by the British newspaper the Daily Telegraph. 

Robert Kigen, Felix Kandie Headline Napoli City Half Marathon


Nobert Kigen and Felix Kandie of Kenya headline a men’s pro field aiming for a sub-60 minute performance at the fifth Napoli City Half Marathon in Naples, Italy.

Olympians, Top Collegians Clash At Larry Wieczorek Invitational


The Larry Wieczorek Invitational this Friday and Saturday at the University of Iowa has it all: top professional athletes like Fred Kerley, Olympic champions and world record holders like Aries Merritt, and defending NCAA champions like Mikiah Brisco of LSU.