DES MOINES, Iowa — Isiah Young is headed back to the international track and field stage.
Young, an Allen Community College graduate, who graduated from the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss., last month, captured a silver medal in the men’s 200 meters at the USA Championships Sunday.
The lofty finish qualifies Young for the 2013 World Championships in Moscow, Russia, Aug. 10-18.
After shattering most of the Ole Miss sprinting records, Young took the competition to another level against the elite American sprinting field at Drake Stadium. Young clocked a personal-best 19.86 seconds in the 200 to finish second behind Tyson Gay (19.74) and ahead of third-place Curtis Mitchell (19.99).
Young also beat out three-time USA Champion Wallace Spearmon (20.10), 2013 NCAA Champion Ameer Webb (20.20) and Olympian Maurice Mitchell (20.32).
To put Young’s 19.86 in perspective, it was the third-best time in the world as of Sunday afternoon behind Gay and Usain Bolt (19.79). Young shares the distinction of being the 12th-best American ever over 200 meters. And it shattered his previous best times of 20.12 from last year’s U.S. Olympic Trials and 20.09 from Saturday’s prelims.
“Technically, I thought it was good,” Young said in an Ole Miss press release. “But the last 10, I kind of broke down, looking over at Tyson instead of just pumping through and keeping my form. I still think it’s a great day. I made the team, second place. It’s been a long year for me and I think that’s pretty good.”
The Junction City, Kan., native returns to the world stage after he also made Team USA in the 200 for last year’s London Olympics, where he advanced to the semifinals.
Young also placed second in the 200 and third in the 100 at the NCAA Outdoor Championships this spring. He also claimed his second straight SEC outdoor title in the 200 and was SEC runner-up in the 100. He was named the 2013 SEC Runner of the Year and 2013 South Region Track Athlete of the Year.
Young credited Ole Miss head coach Brian O’Neal’s encouragement for his successful day.
“It feels good,” he said. “My coach was telling me all year long that I was ready to do something special and he told me that, first of all, I needed to believe in myself to make that happen. I just came out here today, ran my race once again, got to the final. It was pretty impressive, but Coach (O’Neal) was calling it all year.”
Young also made the final of the 100 meters in Des Moines and placed seventh with a 10.12 on Friday. He clocked a school-record and personal-best 9.93 during the semifinals.
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