Cherry Joins 44-Second Club at Olympic Trials

July 2, 2016

EUGENE, Ore. – LSU’s NCAA Outdoor Bronze Medalist Michael Cherry added his name to the 44-second club in the 400-meter dash during Saturday’s semifinals at the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials held at Hayward Field as he raced to a three-tenth-of-a-second personal best of 44.81 seconds for the fifth-fastest time of the day.

Cherry appeared to advance to the men’s 400-meter final in his U.S. Olympic Trials debut when his 44.81 personal best was originally reported as the fourth-place time in the first semifinal heat. The top four finishers in each of the two semifinal heats earned their spot in Sunday’s final with a spot on this year’s U.S. Olympic Team on the line.

But when Gil Roberts won his protest of a false start and was reinstated in second place in the first heat with a time of 44.67, Cherry was left out of the final as the fifth-place finisher in their race.

Cherry, who smashed his previous PR of 45.11 set on the same Hayward Field track in a third-place finish in the NCAA final back on June 10, missed out on the eight-man final despite having the fifth-fastest time on the afternoon. He followed Tony McQuay (44.24), Roberts (44.67), Najee Glass (44.79) and Kyle Clemons (44.79) across the finish line in the first heat. Advancing to the men’s 400-meter final from the second heat were LaShawn Merritt (45.05), David Verburg (45.19), Arman Hall (45.33) and Michael Berry (45.63).

While eclipsing the 45-second barrier in the event for the first time in his collegiate career, Cherry became the fifth-fastest 400-meter sprinter in the history of the LSU Track & Field program as he surpassed the likes of Alleyne Francique (44.87) and Pete Coley (44.89) on the school’s all-time outdoor performance list. LSU’s other 44-second sprinters include Derrick Brew (44.29), Vernon Norwood (44.44), Xavier Carter (44.53) and Kelly Willie (44.63).

Former Lady Tiger All-American Charlene Lipsey also lined up in Saturday’s semifinals as she placed 15th overall in the women’s 800 meters with a run of 2 minutes, 5.15 seconds for seventh place in the first heat.

Former seven-time NCAA Champion and 2013 Bowerman Award Winner Kimberlyn Duncan was off and running at the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials for the first time on Saturday as she sprinted to a seasonal best of 11.23 (+1.8) in the 100-meter dash to advance to the semifinals on Sunday afternoon as the third-place finisher in the fifth preliminary heat.

Sophomore All-American Mikiah Brisco came up short of advancement to the 100-meter semifinals as she placed 22nd overall with a time of 11.29 (+2.0) in qualifying. Former Tiger All-American Jeremy Hicks also took to the long jump runway on Saturday afternoon as he jumped a series-best wind-aided mark of 25 feet, 4 ¾ inches (+2.7) on his second attempt to finish in 14th place overall in men’s qualifying.

LSU’s Entries at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials
Note: Times are Central and subject to change due to weather and athlete advancement.

Sunday, July 3
TV Coverage: NBC (6 p.m. CT)
6:02 p.m. – Women’s 100 Meters Semifinals (Kimberlyn Duncan)
7:44 p.m. – Women’s 100 Meters Final (Kimberlyn Duncan)

Monday, July 4
TV Coverage: NBC Sports Network (6 p.m. CT)
6:15 p.m. – Women’s Triple Jump Qualifying (Lynnika Pitts, Keri Emanuel)

Thursday, July 7
TV Coverage: NBC Sports Network (7 p.m. CT)
5:30 p.m. – Women’s Javelin Qualifying (Rebekah Wales)
7:02 p.m. – Women’s 100 Hurdles First Round (Jasmin Stowers, Tenaya Jones)
7:30 p.m. – Men’s 200 Meters First Round (Aaron Ernest)
7:58 p.m. – Women’s 400 Hurdles First Round (Cassandra Tate, Kymber Payne)
8 p.m. – Men’s Discus Qualifying (Rodney Brown)
8:30 p.m. – Women’s Triple Jump Final (Lynnika Pitts, Keri Emanuel)
8:53 p.m. – Men’s 400 Hurdles First Round (Quincy Downing)

Friday, July 8
TV Coverage: NBC Sports Network (5 p.m. CT); NBC (7 p.m. CT)
5:02 p.m. – Men’s 110 Hurdles First Round (Jordan Moore, Joshua Thompson, Ryan Fontenot)
5:30 p.m. – Women’s 200 Meters First Round (Kimberlyn Duncan, Jada Martin)
5:30 p.m. – Men’s Discus Final (Rodney Brown)
5:58 p.m. – Women’s 100 Hurdles Semifinals (Jasmin Stowers, Tenaya Jones)
6:31 p.m. – Women’s 400 Hurdles Semifinals (Cassandra Tate, Kymber Payne)
6:47 p.m. – Men’s 400 Hurdles Semifinals (Quincy Downing)
7:37 p.m. – Men’s 200 Meters Semifinals (Aaron Ernest)
7:54 p.m. – Women’s 100 Hurdles Final (Jasmin Stowers, Tenaya Jones)

Saturday, July 9
TV Coverage: NBC (7 p.m. CT)
6 p.m. – Women’s Javelin Final (Rebekah Wales)
6:25 p.m. – Men’s 110 Hurdles Semifinals (Jordan Moore, Joshua Thompson, Ryan Fontenot)
7:03 p.m. – Women’s 200 Meters Semifinals (Kimberlyn Duncan, Jada Martin)
7:42 p.m. – Men’s 200 Meters Final (Aaron Ernest)
7:52 p.m. – Men’s 110 Hurdles Final (Jordan Moore, Joshua Thompson, Ryan Fontenot)

Sunday, July 10
TV Coverage: NBC (6 p.m. CT)
6:03 p.m. – Women’s 400 Hurdles Final (Cassandra Tate, Kymber Payne)
6:51 p.m. – Men’s 400 Hurdles Final (Quincy Downing)
7:11 p.m. – Women’s 200 Meters Final (Kimberlyn Duncan, Jada Martin)

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