The 16-year-old out-kicked everyone over the final 400 meters.
ALBUQUERQUE — High school phenom Mary Cain won the women’s mile, Ryan Whiting improved his world leading mark in the men’s shot put and Will Leer ran the fastest ever indoor time at altitude in winning the men’s mile as the USA Indoor Track & Field Championships concluded Sunday at the Albuquerque Convention Center.
Cain continued her dominant indoor season as she won her first U.S. indoor title at only 16 years old. Cain ran with the front of the pack and made her move with a lap and a half remaining and bolted at the bell to open a one second gap over her competitors. Cain broke the tape in 5:05.68, with Treniere Moser in second in 5:06.55. The last athlete to win a U.S. indoor title while in high school was Allyson Felix in 2003.
“I don’t worry about time,” Cain said after the race. “I go in there to race, and that’s what I did today. I was kind of glad I was in the pack, and I know I have a kick so I thought if nobody wants to go now I’ll really go the last 400 and kill it in and that’s exactly what I did. I knew that I have a good kick and as long as I am in it, I have a good shot to win.”
Having a knack for throwing indoors, Ryan Whiting improved his current world-leading mark in winning the men’s shot put at 21.80m/71-6.25. The 2012 World Indoor Championships gold medalist, Whiting now owns the four best throws in the world this season.
Leer won his second U.S. indoor title in as many days after taking the men’s 3,000m on Saturday. He won the mile on Sunday in 3:58.79, edging out Craig Miller, who placed second in 3:58.90 and Cory Leslie, who placed third in 3:59.88.
“I definitely felt a little bit of the fatigue from the race last night,” Leer said. “I never would have said that we would have run under fpur minutes — I’m impressed with my run myself, I have to say.”
Ajee Wilson, only 18, won the women’s 800m title in 2:02.64. Wilson took the lead from the gun and finished in 2:02.64, one stride ahead of runner-up Chanelle Price in 2:02.93.
Competing for the first time ever at the U.S. Indoor Championships, three-time Olympic gold medalist and five-time world championships gold medalist Jeremy Wariner won the men’s 400m in 45.82. It was his first indoor race since 2004. Wariner finished well ahead of runner-up Marcus Boyd (46.54) and Michael Courtney (48.0).
Just over two weeks after he set the American indoor record in the 600m, Eric Sowinski claimed the U.S. indoor title in the men’s 800m with a winning time of 1:47.09. Sowinski made a move with 200m remaining and held off a strong charge from Robby Andrews, who placed second in 1:47.13. Tyler Mulder was third in 1:47.43.
“I can’t put into words right now how this feels,” Sowinski said. “I wanted to break 1:47.0, but it’s a PR (personal record) and I will take it. It was different running here at altitude.”