Roberts sets NCAA Championships 110H record in semifinals

Published 5:09 am Thursday, June 6, 2019

AUSTIN, Texas – Kentucky track and field junior Daniel Roberts smashed the NCAA Championships 110-meter hurdles record in his semifinal race on Wednesday running an impressively smooth time of 13.06 on Wednesday at Mike A. Myers Stadium to qualify for Friday’s final.

He took sole possession of second place in collegiate history. Roberts entered the meet tied with rival Grant Holloway of Florida for that spot on the all-time chart at 13.07. The pair ran those times at the SEC Championships last month on different days (Holloway in the prelims on Friday; Roberts to win the final on Saturday).

Roberts lowered his PB by .01 seconds and moved within .06 seconds of tying one of the oldest collegiate records in athletics: Renaldo Nehemiah’s 13.00 that he clocked back in 1979.

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Per USTFCCCA notes, Roberts has notched three of the top-10 marks in collegiate history this season alone: No. 2, t-No. 3, No. 7.

Roberts will line up next to Holloway and the rest of an extremely strong collegiate field in the final Friday at 9:12 pm ET.

Thursday’s schedule is made up of women’s events only for UK starting with the 4x100m relay at 8:02 p.m. ET.

All field events will have online broadcasts via ESPN3.

Other Wednesday results

Matt Peare placed 21st in his first NCAA Championships pole vault appearance, clearing the first bar on his third attempt at 17’0.75”5.20m and then not quite getting over 17’6.5”/5.35m, which would have been a .25-inch PB.

Senior Elijah Marta placed 23rd in the men’s javelin with a best toss of 201’5”/61.40m. He earned First Team All-America honors last year and bettered his PB at SECs and ranks as the No. 2 javelin thrower in UK history.

Sophomore SEC silver medalist Dwight St. Hillaire missed the NCAA 400m final in time by two spots and .02 seconds, running a 10th-place semifinal time of 45.56.

SEC Freshman Runner of the Year Tai Brown placed 13th in the 110H semifinal, running 13.71 (+1.8).

UK’s men’s 4x100m relay of Roberts, St. Hillaire, Nathaniel Bann and Jacob Smith ran a season best 39.46 to place 16th. UK’s 4x400m relay of St. Hillaire, Smith, Bann and senior William Walker ran 3:10.31 to place 20th.

The format

Points are scored at the NCAA Championships by individuals or relay teams finishing top-eight in respective events. Points are awarded on a 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis with 10 going to the winner and one going to eight place. The team with the most points at the end of the meet wins the team title.

Athletes qualified to the NCAA Championships finals site by finishing top-12 at two regional meets 10 days ago. The East and West Preliminary Championships. Athletes qualified there based on having top-48 marks in respective events recorded during the season.

Meet primer

The No. 9-ranked Kentucky women’s team has 11 event entries, tied for fifth most. The No. 18 UK men’s team has 11 event entries, tied for sixth most at the Championships.

The men’s competition will be held Wednesday and Friday with just the men’s decathlon concluding on Thursday.

The women’s competition will take place Thursday and Saturday, with the heptathlon starting on Friday.

The multi-events cross over because they have to be held in two consecutive days.

The precedent

The UK women’s team has finished in the top five at NCAA outdoors three of the last four years and was fourth with 46 points last year. UK’s best-ever NCAA Outdoor finish was second on 50 points in 2015.

Senior Marie-Josée Ebwea-Bile Excel medaled at NCAA outdoors in the triple jump the past two years.

The UK men’s team finished tied-16th with 16 points last year at NCAA Outdoors. UK’s best NCAA outdoor finish was ninth in 2008 on 25 points.