Alyssa Wilson NJ of Texas State, who starred at NJ's Donovan Catholic, produced the greatest performance ever by a U.S. collegiate in the women's hammer throw when she unloaded a massive 245-4 to place second on Thursday at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Hayward Field in Oregon.
Wilson, a graduate transfer from UCLA, beat her previous PR by more than five feet as she became the second best hammer thrower in NCAA history and moved up to No. 7 on the all-time list for an American.
Wilson finished second to Cal's Camryn Rogers, who threw a collegiate and meet record 254-10 to win for the second straight year. The 254-10 by Rogers, a Canadian and a 2020 Olympian, is the eighth-best throw ever in the world.
The 245-4 moved Wilson all the way to No. 9 all-time on the U.S. list, and her runner-up finish secured her eighth career first team All-America honors, matched the best finish by a Bobcat thrower -- male or female -- ever in the NCAA outdoor championships. The last Texas State thrower to finish national runner-up was Abigail Ruston in the shot put in 2007. Wilson is the first Bobcat to compete in the hammer throw in school history. The second-place finish also gave the Bobcats eight team points -- their most in the national outdoor championships since 2007.
Wilson also competed in the shot put four hours after the hammer where she finished 23rd with a throw of 52-9.25. She will be back in action on Saturday when she competes in the discus. She is seeded fifth.
Several other NJ stars have shined at the NCAA Championships.
The Princeton men got off to a very fast start.
(Photo courtesy of Princeton University)
Sondre Guttormsen added his second national title of 2022 for Princeton, winning the pole vault on Wednesday night.
The NCAA Indoor Champion, the Norwegian record holder, the Ivy League record holder, and now the NCAA Outdoor Champion, Guttormsen cleared a best mark of 5.75 meters and was named First Team All-America for the second time this season. He cleared his first attempt of 5.45 meters with ease, then missed two attempts at 5.65 meters. Guttormsen bounced back, clearing 5.70 meters, then delivered a clutch vault of 5.75 meters to claim top honors in the event.
Guttormsen is the Tigers' fourth NCAA Outdoor Champion, and the third coached by William M. Weaver Jr.' 34 Head Coach Fred Samara. His pole vault title also brings Samara's total number of NCAA champions coached to nine. Also earning All-America honors in the pole vault for the second time in 2022 was Simen Guttormsen, who finished fourth. His best mark was 5.65 meters, tying his PR and the all-time No. 2 mark in school history set at the 2022 Texas Relays. He cleared 5.30 meters on his first attempt, and would later clear 5.50 meters, and 5.65 meters.
Princeton senior C.J. Licata, a graduate of Gill St. Bernard's, threw 63-4.25 to place 13th in the men's shot put to earn second-team All-America honors. Licata was also an All-American at the NCAA Indoor Championships, where he finished eighth.
Princeton's Sam Ellis finished third overall in the 1,500 meters, advancing to the final and setting a new school record of 3:37.60. He came out of the gates hard, and bested the previous program record of 3:39.34 set by Garrett O'Toole '18 at Swarthmore in 2016. Ellis also topped his PR of 3:39.54, set at the 2022 Princeton Elite Invitational.
Also for the Tigers, Ed Trippas advanced to the final in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, finishing in 8:29.86. He placed seventh, and posted the second-fastest time in school history, topping the previous all-time No. 2 time and his previous PR of 8:30.25, set at the 2022 Penn Relays. Also earning a spot in the finals for Princeton was Sam Rodman, who finished seventh in the 800 meters with a time of 1:47.30
Michael Phillippy clocked in at 46.37 in the 400 meters, finishing 21st. In the 4x100 meter relay, the team of Simang'aliso Ndhlovu, Kaden Reynolds, Daniel Duncan and Greg Sholars finished 23rd with a time of 39.98. Competing in the 4x400 meter relay was the team of Ladislav Töpfer, William Doyle, Andersen Dimon, and Phillippy; the quartet finished 23rd in 3:09.26.
Jordan West , a junior at Tennessee junior who starred at Rahway High, finished fourth in the men's shot put with a 66-5.50 to earn first-team All-America honors.
Sean Dolan of Villanova, a sophomore out of Hopewell Valley High, posted a time of 1:46.96 in the second of three heats of the men's 800 on Wednesday and is the fifth-fastest qualifier for Friday night's final.
Dolan ran a strong race from start to finish and came in second in his heat to nab one of the automatic qualifying spots. The entire race saw Dolan run toe-to-toe with Moad Zahafi from Texas Tech who entered the NCAA Championships as the fastest qualifier coming out of the East and West preliminary meets two weeks ago.
Following a tight first lap in which four of the eight runners went out in under 53 seconds, Zahafi and Dolan gained a bit of separation from the rest of the pack as they came down the final straightaway. Zahafi crossed the finish line in 1:46.66 and Dolan was three-tenths of a second behind him, with the third place finisher another half a second off of Dolan's pace.
Dolan is the Wildcats first men's runner to make an NCAA final in the 800 meters since Samuel Ellison did so twice during his collegiate career. Ellison made the final of the 800 meters outdoors as a sophomore in 2012 and indoors as a senior two years later. Dolan's semifinal time of 1:46.96 is the fastest he has run this season and the second-fastest time of his career. His only previous race below 1:47 came on June 12, 2021 when he posted a personal best mark of 1:46.41 at the USATF New York Open & Masters Outdoor Championships; the performance earned him a spot at last year's U.S. Olympic Team Trials which were also contested at Hayward Field.
Jaheem Hayles of Syracuse, who won the 110 hurdles at the Meet of Champions as a senior at Roselle in 2019, ran a personal best 13.44 to win his semifinal heat on Wednesday to qualify for Friday's nine-man final. The 13.44 by Hayles time was the third fastest recorded in the semifinals and was full tenth of a second faster than his previous best.
A'nan Bridgett, a senior at Rutgers who went to West Windsor-Plainsboro South High, finished sixth in the men's long jump on Wednesday. with a personal-best 25-9.25 to earn first team All-America honors for the first time.
Rutgers freshman Chloe Timberg finished tied for 12th in the women's pole vault by clearing 13-9.25 to earn second-team All-America honors.
Rutgers junior Jameson Woodell, who starred at Hunterdon Central High, placed 20th in the semifinals of the men's 400 hurdles with a time of 52.79.
Evan Niedrowski, a freshman at Monmouth, finished 11th in the men's javelin with a throw of 230-4 to earn second-team All-America honors.
Oregon sophomore Luis Peralta, who starred at Passaic High, finished 22nd in the semifinals of the 800 in 1:50.02.