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IAAF World U20 Championships: Texas Athletes' Preview

In just a dozen days, many of the world's best under-20 track & field athletes will converge upon the gorgeous city of Tampere, Finland to compete in the 2018 IAAF World Championships, and among these stars are nine from the Lone Star State. So, let's meet these Texans representing the United States.

Sanaa Barnes - Northwest Nelson - Villanova signee

After winning the 6A UIL State High Jump Championship in 2017, Barnes looked to repeat in 2018, only to fall to second place. She redeemed herself at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships with a leap of 6-0.75, good enough for the #1 spot in Texas, the #2 spot in the United States - and a height that would have claimed gold at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Championships.

---I am mainly looking forward to my competition as well as being able to see the different culture of Finland! It is a bigger stage, and I get to compete against international athletes around the world and to see how I compare as we get closer to the 2020 Olympics.

Picture by TTFCA

Matthew Boling - Houston Strake Jesuit

A multi-event athlete who gained great exposure in 2018, the Houston Strake Jesuit in-coming senior set personal bests in both the long jump (24-02.75) and 400 (46.15.) He finished 6th at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships in both the long jump (23-11.50) and the 400 (46.59) and earned a spot in the Relay Pool.

Picture by Houston Chronicle

Howard (Trey) Fields III - Baylor University - Manvel

The former Manvel speedster and now Baylor Bear set a personal best in the 400 (45.50) at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships to earn a spot in the Relay Pool. Fields finished second in the Big 12 Indoors at 46.49, third in the Big 12 Outdoors at 45.66 and fourth in the Division I West Prelims at 47.05.

Picture by TXMileSplit

---I’m looking forward to being able to represent my country and where I’m from. Really excited to be able to experience something like this! This is my first time going overseas, and i have to give all my glory to God for this opportunity!

Quivell Jordan - University of Houston - DeSoto

At the Corky Classic (indoor season), Jordan was part of the 4x400 relay squad that broke the school record with a time of 3:07.01. The former DeSoto HS hurdle specialist ran 50.44 in the 400-meter hurdles at the NCAA Division I West prelims, and then he ran a personal best 50.21 at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships.

Picture by University of Houston

---I am looking forward to having a great time in Finland with the rest of my teammates! We have worked hard all season, and it's paying off. Making this team was a blessing on to me from God, and I am glad to be running against my fellow athletes and to represent my country. Everyone from every country that is competing has worked hard up to this point. I just plan to run my race, have a good time, and no matter what happens, give thanks for this great opportunity.

Julia Madubuike - Texas A&M - McKinney North

A powerhouse for McKinney North in 2017, Madubuike enjoyed a productive freshman campaign for the Aggies. She ran a 23.49 200 at the SEC Indoors and followed that up with a 16th place all-time Aggie 400-meter time of 52.58 (May 26th) before setting a new personal best at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships. For her efforts, Madubuike earned a spot on the Relay Pool.

Picture by Texas A&M University

Jasmine Moore - Mansfield Lake Ridge

The nation's premier high school horizontal jumper, Moore has won three consecutive UIL State Championships in the long and triple jumps. In fact, she is the only girl in U.S. high school history with a 21+ long jump / 45+ triple jump to her credit (all-weather conditions.) In 2018, she earned a 44-01 wind-legal triple to claim the #3 all-time spot in Texas. Her personal best of 45-04.75 would have earned bronze at this year's NCAA DI Outdoor Championships; she was named the Gatorade Girl's TF Athlete of the Year for Texas.

---Making this team has been my goal since I made the Junior Pan Am team last summer. I’m really excited to compete on team USA for the U20 world championship; it’s such an honor. It’s going to be a great experience being able to compete internationally.

Picture by TTFCA

Gabriel Oladipo - Texas A&M - Fort Bend Hightower

Part of an elite club in high school - 70' shot / 200' disc - Oladipo's 215-02 at the 2017 Jesuit-Sheaner Relays ties Brian Robison for the top spot all-time in Texas history. As a freshman, he led the Aggies with a throw of 186-06, moving him to the 18th spot in A&M history. At the NCAA DI West Prelims, Oladipo finished 21st before capturing the USATF Junior Outdoors title at 200-07.

Picture by Shawn Price, Texas A&M

---Just looking forward to having a great competition with an awesome group of people as well as getting to experience another country!

Adrian (Tripp) Piperi - University of Texas - The Woodlands

One of the Texas' most accomplished throwers, Piperi is a member of the 70/200 club with a personal best of 74-11.50 in the shot while at The Woodlands - #3 all-time in Texas. A fabulous freshman season includes a Big 12 Indoor Championship (64-00.50), the #3 all-time indoor UT mark at 65-00.75 and the #5 all-time UT outdoor mark at 66-11.50. Piperi captured the USATF Junior Outdoors title at 70-06.50.

Picture by TexasSports

---I can’t wait to have not just the opportunity to compete in Finland, but the opportunity to possibly win the U20 championships. I have been working for this all summer, and I’m ready to compete.

Sammy Watson - Texas A&M

The 800-meter specialist from Rochester, NY owns the numbers 4, 5, 7, and 9 spots in A&M history with a collegiate personal best of 2:02.20 set at the NCAA DI West Prelims. On the Bowerman pre-season Watch List, the super freshman who won World Junior titles in 2015 and 2016 captured the USATF Junior Outdoor Championship in a time of 2:01.46.

Picture by Texas A&M

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