Track and Field

Track and Field

Riley earns Jamaican Olympic invite

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Andrew Riley has never run a faster race in the 110-meter hurdles than he did Saturday night.

It wasn't quite fast enough to give the former Illini a victory in the finals at the Jamaican National Championships. It was plenty fast, however, to send Riley to his first Olympics.

Felicien error sends another ex-Illini to Olympics

CALGARY, Alberta — Former Illinois hurdler Nikkita Holder is headed to the Olympics. The misfortune of another former Illini paved the way for that development Saturday.

Perdita Felicien, a two-time Olympian seeking to return to the Games for the first time since 2004, committed a false start in the finals of the 100-meter hurdles at Canada's Olympic Track and Field Trials.

Tate: Buford-Bailey is a star — here and abroad

— Mike Small qualified for golf's prestigious PGA Championship (Kiawah Island, S.C., Aug. 9-12) by finishing fourth Wednesday in the PGA Professional event in Seaside, Calif. He plays in several tour events every summer.

— Janet Rayfield spent three weeks last summer scouting soccer opponents for the U.S. National team in the 2011 World Cup in Germany.

Riley named Bowerman finalist

CHAMPAIGN — Former Illini Andrew Riley was named a finalist for the Bowerman Award, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association announced Friday.

The award is given annually to the nation's most outstanding male and female collegiate track and field athletes.

Lewis-Smallwood makes Olympic team

EUGENE, Ore. — Gia Lewis-Smallwood is headed to London this summer.

"I have not been there," the Centennial graduate said Sunday. "I've been a lot of places, but I am very excited to go."

Illini Legends, Lists & Lore: Aaron Mobarak

Twenty-one years ago, Illinois track and field standout Aaron Mobarak won first-team Academic All-America honors. His 3.9-plus grade-point average and back-to-back Big Ten titles in the triple jump earned him honors in this club of overachievers.

Upon the conclusion of his academic career at Illinois, Mobarak secured a master's degree in business administration from Harvard.

Former Illini reaches discus finals

EUGENE, Ore. — Centennial product Gia Lewis-Smallwood, an Illinois grad, qualified for Sunday's discus finals at the U.S. Olympic trials, throwing 188 feet, 11 inches Friday.

Lewis-Smallwood had the sixth-best toss in the prelims. Stephanie Brown Trafton was first at 206-1.

Spencer joins Riley as Bowerman semifinalist

CHAMPAIGN — Illinois freshman Ashley Spencer was selected as one of 10 semifinalists for the female Bowerman Award, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association announced Tuesday.

The award is presented annually to the nation's most outstanding male and female collegiate track and field athletes.

Riley makes history

DES MOINES, Iowa — Andrew Riley wasn't nearly at his fastest. A headwind of 3.5 mph undoubtedly had something to do with that.

Still, the greatest hurdler in University of Illinois men's track and field history was fast enough Saturday at Drake Stadium to complete a historic feat.

Riley all smiles after photo finish

DES MOINES, Iowa — Very few, if any, of the thousands of spectators on hand at the NCAA Track and Field Championships at Drake Stadium could identify who won the men's 100-meter final.

Illinois' Andrew Riley knew.