Church and Persinger to Represent @MemTigersTF_XC at USATF Jr. Nationals
July 2, 2014
EUGENE, Ore.- University of Memphis track and field freshmen LaForrest Church and Aaron Persinger will represent the Tigers at the USA Track and Field (USATF) Junior National Outdoor Championships July 5-6. This marks the fourth-straight season that Memphis has qualified athletes for the prestigious event.
"I am very excited for both Aaron and LaForrest to get the opportunity to compete on this stage," head track and field coach Kevin Robinson said. "This has been an incredibly long season for both athletes and they have worked their tails off to be in this position. The best young athletes compete at this event, and typically it's a precursor to the eventual competition at the Olympic trials. This is an exciting opportunity for both young men. I'm ready to see them compete against the best in the U.S. in their age group."
Church will compete in the 800m. To qualify for the USATF Jr. National Outdoor Championships in the men's 800m, an athlete must have run a time of 1:52.14 or better during the outdoor season.
Church qualified with his season-best time of 1:50.21 clocked in his gold medal winning performance at the American Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The Port Orchard, Wash., native, recorded four top-five performances in the 800m during the 2014 outdoor campaign including two wins.
Persinger will compete in the 400m hurdles. To qualify for the USATF Jr. National Outdoor Championship in the men's 400m hurdles, an athlete must have run a time of 53.94 or better during the outdoor season.
Persinger hit the qualifying mark initially in a second place finish of 53.77 at the Joey Haines Invitational. The Des Moines, Wash., native ran a season-best of 52.83 in the 400m hurdles during the preliminary round at the American Athletic Conference Outdoor track and Field Championship.
The preliminary rounds for both the 800m and 400m hurdles at the USATF Jr. National Outdoor Championship are set for Saturday. If the athletes advance they will compete in the finals on Sunday.
The 2014 USATF Junior Outdoor Championships will serve as a qualifier for the 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships. Top performers will be part of the American team that will have the unique opportunity to return to Eugene from July 22-27. The 2014 edition of the IAAF World Junior Championships marks the first time the event has ever been held in the United States.
Results from the event will be posted on GoTigegrsGo.com as they are made available.