DES MOINES, IPWA - Three North Carolina A&T Aggies have earned spots on the U.S.A track and field national team. Former A&T stars Rodney Rowe and Chris Belcher are on the team along with current Aggie standout Trevor Stewart. In addition, former Aggie hurdler Michael Dickson put together the two best performances of his life over the weekend.
“We’re only doing what we have been doing all season – training smart, training hard and believing that we are among the best in the world,” said A&T's director of track and field programs Duane Ross. “I’m happy for all our athletes that competed here. They showed the world that A&T is and will continue to be one of the best track and field programs in the country.”
Belcher was the first to make the national team on Friday. He ran a 10.12 in the 100-meter final to finish third, becoming an automatic qualifier. Stewart, who finished second in the nation in the men’s 400m over the spring, will compete for the U.S. at the IAAF World Championships in the 4x400-meter relay.
On Sunday, it was Rowe’s turn. Rowe will be a member of the team as a 200m runner. Rowe made the 200m final at USATF by running a qualifying time of 20.59. Rowe then finished seventh in the final in 20.75. Rowe needed to finish in the top-3 in order to be an automatic qualifier for the national team.
However, since some of the other athletes competing did not have the qualifying standard between January 1, 2018-July 21, 2019, Rowe will make the world championship team.
Meanwhile, Dickson demolished his personal record twice on Sunday in the men’s 110-meter hurdles. Dickson blew away his previous PR of 13.65 by running a 13.47 in the semifinals to qualify for the finals. Dickson’s time was the fourth-fastest qualifying time. In the final, Dickson again lowered his PR by finishing in 13.45.
His fifth-place finish, however, was not enough to place him on the U.S. team. “Michael has had the potential all along to be one of the best,” said Ross. “Tonight, he proved it.”
Other HBCU products had notable finishes in Des Moines.
South Carolina State's Tyrell Richard finished eighth in the men's 400m final.
Prairie View A&M's Deonca Bookman came in eighth in the women's 400m hurdles final.
SCSU's Derrek Kemp finished fifth in his men's 100m semifinal heat.
A&T's Kayla White also finished fifth in her women's 100m semifinal.
Former Stillman College standout, Jeff Henderson finished fifth in the men's long jump competition.
Two Hampton alums made it to the semifinals of their respective events. Ce'Aira Brown finished ninth in the women's 800m semifinals and Trey Hollowan finished 12th in the men's 110m hurdles semifinals.
NCATAggies.com contributed to this report.