National heptathlete Tyra Gittens jumps to history at Texas meet

Tyra Gittens -
Tyra Gittens -

HEPTATHLETE Tyra Gittens delivered another record-breaking display to capture gold at the South Eastern Conference (SEC) Outdoor Track and Field Championships which continued at the EB Cushing Stadium in Texas, United States on Friday.

After seven gruelling track and field events, over the past two days, the Texas A&M junior amassed 6,418 points to claim top spot by a comfortable margin. Holding on to silver was Georgia freshman Anna Hall (6,117 pts) while fellow senior Asya Reynolds (5,922 pts) grabbed bronze.

Having set two national records, three personal and two season bests, two meet and facility records and one collegiate record, Gittens devastatingly fell just two points of attaining the Olympic qualification march of 6,420 points.

On Friday, the 22-year-old TT athlete resumed competition atop the standings, on 3,920 points, after completing four events on Thursday.

She returned to top the field in the women’s long jump with a 6.96-metre leap to set a new national record. Her performance wiped away Rhonda Watkins’ previous record of 6.82m which was achieved in 2007. Additionally, Gittens’ display saw her also attain a personal best, as well as new meet and facility records.

Gittens then finished second in the women’s javelin by launching the spear a distance of 40.18m and also securing a season-best throw.

In her final event, women’s 800m, Gittens placed tenth overall after crossing the finish line in two minutes 31.97 seconds.

However, on Thursday, she began her seven-event campaign by placing fourth (13.47 seconds) in the women’s 100m hurdles. Gittens’ second event – women’s high jump – saw her outclass the field by leaping 1.95m in the air to claim top spot and a personal best, meet, collegiate and facility record.

Her high jump performance also saw her break the national record of 1.93m which was held by Natasha Alleyne since 1995.

She then placed fourth in the shot put by throwing the sphere 11.96m. And in her final event on the first day, the women’s 200m, Gittens again led the field by securing first place in 23.43s; another personal best for the in-form heptathlete.

Gittens also has the national women’s heptathlon record of 6,074 points since 2018.

Newsday attempted to reach out to National Association of Athletics Administrations (NAAA) boss George Commissiong for a comment on Gittens’ historic performances but all calls to his phone went unanswered.

The SEC meet concludes on Saturday.


"National heptathlete Tyra Gittens jumps to history at Texas meet"

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