The USATF Outdoor Championships returned to Eugene, Oregon this weekend, bringing the nation’s best athletes to TrackTown USA to compete at Hayward Field. The meet serves as the final stop on the 2015 Outdoor USATF Championship Series.
Athletes can earn spots on the 2015 IAAF World Championships team set for August 22-30 in Beijing, China, as well as on the Pan Am Games, Thorpe Cup, Pan Am Juniors and NACAC Championships teams.
After three days of competition, HBCU products have come away with two championships and three top 20 finishes.
Friday evening, Coppin State product Christina Epps soared to a career best 14.09 meters (46 feet, 2.75 inches) to win the women's triple jump.
Epps, who competes for the adidas Garden State Track Club, hit her 46-2 3/4 mark on her first attempt and it stood up as the best performance of the competition. April Sinkler was second with a best leap of 45-4 1/2.
Saint Augustine's University graduate Bershawn "Batman" Jackson won the men's 400m hurdles title on Saturday.
Capturing his fifth U.S. 400 hurdles crown, Jackson advanced to the World Championships 10 years after claiming the 2005 world championship in the event. On Saturday, Jackson finished ahead of training partner Johnny Dutch with a winning time of 48.29 seconds. Dutch, who also qualified for the World Championships, placed second in 48.43 seconds.
Both Jackson and Dutch are trained by St. Augustine's legendary track & field coach George Williams.
Hampton product Francena McCorory and Livingstone standout Quanera Hayes finished fourth and fifth in the women's 400m dash won by Allyson Felix in 50.19 seconds. Only the top three finishers are assured of a spot on the USA roster for the IAAF World Championships, however if Felix decides to only compete in the 200-meter dash, McCorory and Hayes could be selected as relay team participants.
Savannah State's Cameron Hall just missed qualifying for the semifinals in the men's 100m hurdles by .01 seconds. He finished fifth in his heat (13.80) and had the 18th fastest time overall.
Howard product David Oliver led all qualifiers for the semifinals in the event, winning his heat in 13.28 seconds. Oliver set the Hayward Field record when he finished the event in 12.90 seconds in 2010. The semifinals and finals are set for Sunday, the final day of competition.