Huddle smashes AR in 10,000 to open Olympic Track & Field competition

Huddle smashes AR in 10,000 to open Olympic Track & Field competition

Provided by USATF

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL -- Two-time Olympian Molly Huddle set an American record in the women’s 10,000m and five other Team USA athletes advanced to the next round Friday morning in the opening session of track and field at Olympic Stadium.

Huddle shatters American record in fastest 10,000m of all time

A very quick early pace had Molly Huddle (Elmira, New York) tucked in at the back of an eight-woman lead pack through 2K, passing in just under 6:00. The rapid pace continued through 3K, with Huddle still in eighth as the leaders went past in 8:52.79. By the 4K mark Huddle had fallen off the top seven by about 10m as the leaders were on near-world record pace. Huddle made up ground through 5K, passing Burka and moving into seventh while pacing herself at nearly 15 seconds under American record pace for the 10,000m and just four seconds off her 5,000m American record.

Huddle continued to look strong over the second half of the race, lapping many of her competitors but staying focused on the task at hand. She was well under American record pace over the final laps, utilizing Kenya’s Betsy Saina as a pacemaker. Huddle crushed the American record as she finished sixth in 30:13.17 in the greatest women’s 10K ever run. Ethiopia’s Almaz Ayana shattered the world record in 29:17.45, while the silver medalist Vivian Cheruiyot was nearly under the previous world record (29:31.78) as well with her runner-up finish in 29:32.53.

Running a lifetime best 31:26.94, 2015 World Championships bronze medalist Emily Infeld (University Heights, Ohio) was 11th. Marielle Hall (Haddonfield, New Jersey) finished 32nd in 32:39.32.

Carter and Saunders automatically qualify for Friday evening’s final

A wet ring and pesky rain made for a cautious opening round in the women’s shot put qualifying. In round two in Group A, Michelle Carter (Ovilla, Texas), the World Indoor gold medalist, uncorked a 19.01m/62-4.5 that qualified her automatically for the final. NCAA champ Raven Saunders (Charleston, South Carolina) was also an auto Q with her 18.83m/61-9.5 in the second round. Felisha Johnson’s (Indianapolis, Indiana) 17.69m/58-0.5 in Group B placed her 14th overall but was not enough to gain her a spot in the final.

Finley advances to men’s discus final

Trials champion Mason Finley (Chaffee County, Colorado) was in 12th overall after the second round of Group B in men’s discus qualifying, and on his final attempt registered a superb 63.68m/208-11 to move up to second in his flight and sixth overall to comfortably advance to the final.

Andrew Evans (Portage, Michigan) was 16th overall with his 61.87m/203-0 in Group A, while Tavis Bailey (Kannapolis, North Carolina) was 26th with a best of 59.81m/196-2.

Berian and Murphy survive and advance in men’s 800m prelims

World Indoor champion Boris Berian (Colorado Springs, Colorado) sprinted to the lead right away in the first heat, taking the field through 400m in 50.78 and 600m in 1:18.18. He held his position until the final bend, where he yielded slightly to Ayanleh Souleiman and Amal Tuka, finishing a comfortable third in 1:45.87 to automatically advance to the semifinal.

In heat three, Trials winner Clayton Murphy (New Paris, Ohio) was twice clipped as the pace was slower than Berian’s section. Running on the outside of the pack, Murphy finished fourth in 1:46.18 behind heat winner and reigning champion David Rudisha, moving on to the semis as one of three time qualifiers.

Charles Jock (San Diego, California) was sixth in heat four in 1:47.06 and did not advance.

Williams leads Americans through two heptathlon events

In the first event of the morning, the heptathletes hurdled through soggy conditions as Kendell Williams (Kennesaw, Georgia) emerged as the top American in the 100m hurdles with her time of 13.04. Heather Miller-Koch (Columbus, Wisconsin) looked comfortable in her heat, finishing third in 13.56 (1,041 points). Barbara Nwaba (Los Angeles) overcame a slower start and heavy rain in her hurdle heat, but the Olympic Trials champion clipped the final hurdle and staggered across the finish in 13.81 for 1,005 points.

In the high jump, both Nwaba and Williams cleared 1.83m/6-0 to score 1,016 points in the event. Nwaba shook off her hurdles performance with two easy clearances at 1.71m and 1.74m, before clipping the bar upon first attempt and making her second approach at the next three heights. Williams had a similar series, missing 1.83m twice before clearing the bar to score 1,016 points.

Miller-Koch started with a miss on her first attempt of the competition, but soon settled into a rhythm, making every bar on her first attempt until the standard moved to 1.80m/5-10.75. Miller-Koch made it on her final attempt to score 2,019 points through two events.


U.S. athletes after 100H - 4. Williams (1,118); 12. Miller-Koch (1,041); 22. Nwaba (1,005)

U.S. athletes after high jump - 6. Williams (2,134); 12. Nwaba (2,021); 13. Miller-Koch (2,019)

Follow along with all of the action from the Rio Olympic Games by following USATF on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #Rio2016. Fans can follow along with every second of the Rio Olympic Games on the NBC family of networks. All track & field action can be streamed live via the NBC Sports app and the broadcast schedule for tonight is as follows:


2:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


8:00 p.m. – Midnight


12:35 a.m. – 1:35 a.m.


Amanda Brooks