Anna Hall gets things going with a new high school record in the Pentathlon at the USATF Indoor Champs.
STATEN ISLAND, New York -- The nation’s top athletes converged at Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex Friday to contest multi events and weight throw on the first day of competition at the 2019 Toyota USATF Indoor Championships.
In an exciting women’s pentathlon, 17-year-old Anna Hall (Greenwood Village, Colorado) broke fellow competitor Kendell Williams’ (Kennesaw, Georgia) national high school record with 4,302 points to finish third behind Williams (4496) and Emilyn Dearman (4356). Hall, a 2018 IAAF U20 World Championships team member and committed Georgia recruit, set a personal best and took first in both the high jump (1.81m/5-11.25) and 800m (2:16.11). 2016 Olympian and Georgia alum Kendell Williams earned consistent marks in the 60m hurdles (8.18), long jump (6.35m/20-10) and high jump (1.81m/5-11.25).
Earlier in the day, 2017 SEC Indoor Champion in men’s weight throw Daniel Haugh (Marietta, Georgia) proved his talents against the country’s top competitors and took home the first title of national championships weekend. With a powerful final throw and lifetime best of 24.12m/79-1.75, Haugh earned gold in his first Toyota USATF Indoors appearance.
Former Ole Miss Rebel Janeah Stewart (Oxford, Mississippi) won her first USATF title as a professional. The reigning NCAA hammer throw champion went toe-to-toe against defending champion DeAnna Price until the fourth throw when Stewart catapulted a 24.80m/81-4.5, an inch shy of her indoor career best.
The men’s heptathlon ended Day 1 with Alex Bloom (Cincinnati, Ohio) in the lead with 3270 points, followed by Tim Ehrhardt (Santa Barbara, California) at 3231 and Solomon Simmons (Sandy Springs, Georgia) at 3213. Day 2 continues with the 60m hurdles at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Competition continues Saturday with the women’s high jump featuring Vashti Cunningham, men’s shot put with Ryan Crouser andJoe Kovacs, and concludes with the Nike men’s 2 mile with Will Leerand Garrett Heath, among other top athletes. Click here for the competition schedule.
2:00pm ET on NBC Sports Gold
6:30pm - 8:00pm ET on NBCSN
1:45pm ET on NBC Sports Gold
4:00pm - 6:00pm ET on NBCSN
Daniel Haugh, Men’s Weight Throw
“I had a really great series, every throw was like 76, 76, 76 feet, and I knew I was missing some tension in the throw. Coach told me, ‘Just have fun. You’ve done it before, just do it again and just try to throw a little harder on the fourth turn,’ and it all worked out. It was awesome, a nail biter… it’s just an honor to be a part of this crowd.”
Jeneah Stewart, Women’s Weight Throw
“I’ve competed against [Deanna Price] before but never like this, like she’s the defending champion. I came here and came away with the victory so, it’s an amazing feeling… My expectation was to throw over 80. I knew if I threw over 80, I would have a good chance of maybe coming out with a victory… coming in top three, maybe top two. I knew it was going to come down to maybe me and Deanna. I was just hoping to get a good throw and I did.”
Kendell Williams, Women’s Pentathlon
“I’d give myself a grade of C for today… my hurdle time was a season’s best but still a ways away from my 60m hurdles PR so, a solid start. High jump was okay, I was happy to clear 1.81 but season’s best for this year was 1.84 so I was hoping to be at that height or higher... Going forward into Outdoor season I definitely know what I need to work on. [My coach] and I are going to go back to the drawing board and figure out how to tie up the loose ends so, it’s a long season and I’m looking forward to Outdoors.”
Williams on Anna Hall
“Her competition today was so great and we’re really excited to have her coming to Athens. If anyone was going to break my record, I’m glad it was a baby Bulldog.”
Anna Hall, Women’s Pentathlon national high school record holder and third place finisher
“[Breaking the record] was definitely in the back of my mind. I was hoping for 4400 points and fell a little short of that but, I’m still happy with how I was able to execute with the best people I’ve ever competed against.”