Stefanidi beaten, Ethiopians win at Boston indoor athletics
US indoor champion Katie Nageotte upset reigning world and Olympic women's pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi and Ethiopians won two distance crowns at Saturday's Boston Indoor Grand Prix athletics meet.
Nageotte cleared 4.86 meters to Stefanidi's best of 4.71 in the early season affair, the opening event of the six-meet IAAF World Indoor Tour.
"The first couple meets is just getting the rust off. It was just working out the kinks," said Nageotte, who hopes to dethrone the Greek star at the World Championships at Doha in September.
"That's what I'm gunning for," said Nageotte. "I want to come after this indoor season and attack it and get ready for worlds."
Ethiopia's distance crowns went to Hagos Gebrhiwet, capturing the 3,000 in 7:37.41, and Yomif Kejelcha, taking the mile in 3:51.70.
Gebrhiwet, a 5,000m bronze medalist at the 2016 Rio Olympics, denied Kenya's Edward Cheserek a Boston repeat title by 5.52 seconds while two-time world indoor 3,000 champion Kejelcha defeated 2018 world indoor bronze medalist Bethwell Birgen of Kenya by 3.12 seconds.
Gabriela Stafford won the women's mile in a Canadian indoor record 4:24.80, edging American Elinor Purrier by 0.08.
"It's really exciting," Stafford said. "I've had a good fall training. It gives you a lot of confidence."
Reigning Commonwealth Games women's 100m champion Michelle-Lee Ahye of Trinidad and Tobago won the 60m crown in 7.21 with American Shania Collins second by 0.06.
Germany's Konstanze Klosterhalfen took the women's 5,000 in 15:15.80.
"The aim was to win," Klosterhalfen said. "I was hoping to pick the pace up. I really wanted to run fast today but to win is OK."
Rio 1,500 bronze medalist Jenny Simpson was second, 17.58 seconds back in her first 5,000 since 2013 and only indoor race this year.
Raevyn Rogers won the 600 in 1:27.31 with Britain's Lynsey Sharp second in 1:29.11.
- Eaton wins ugly -
Jarret Eaton led a US podium sweep in the 60m hurdles in 7.64, edging Aaron Mallett at the line.
"It wasn't my cleanest race. It was ugly out there," Eaton said. "When things get ugly you just go out and compete ugly."
Donavan Brazier edged fellow American Clayton Murphy by 0.03 to win the 800 in 1:45.91.
"I knew the last 100 was just going to hurt. I just had to keep it going," Brazier said. "It gives me a lot of confidence. I haven't been training that long. I'm in decent shape for early in the year."
US 400m hurdler Rai Benjamin won the men's 300 in 32.55 while American Kendall Ellis took the women's 300 in 36.97.
Sydney McLaughlin, the US 19-year-old who reached the 2016 Rio Olympic 400 hurdles semi-finals as a high school junior, made a triumphant pro debut by winning the seldom-contested 500 in 1:09.46.
"It was a great day," she said. "I accomplished everything I wanted in college. It was the right time (to turn pro)."
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