Josh MacDonald placed fifth in the USA junior men's 3,000-meter steeplechase final, Saturday in Eugene, Ore.
Coach and pupil both performed well in their respective steeplechase races, Saturday at the 2011 USA Junior and Senior Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Hayward Field. Liberty freshman Josh MacDonald placed fifth in the junior men's steeplechase final, while assistant coach Derek Scott came in ninth in the men's steeplechase. Running his first race in more than a month and a half, MacDonald started out a bit conservatively in the junior men's 3,000-meter steeplechase final. However, he was able to move up several spots during the latter half of the race and came in fifth out of 23 entrants with an official time of 9:19.56. MacDonald's race had a definite IC4A flavor. Georgetown's Max Darrah (8:59.69) and Princeton signee Eddie Owens (9:04.79) notched the two qualifying spots for the 2011 Pan American Junior Athletics Championships. Meanwhile, Colin Mearns of Virginia crossed the line third in 9:07.33. In contrast to MacDonald's strategy, Scott was very aggressive in the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase final. He led for most of the first half of the race, in an effort to qualify for the IAAF World Championships. However, he slipped back to ninth place during the closing stages, finishing in 8:45.41. Up front, Billy Nelson (8:28.46) held off the duo of Dan Huling (8:29.27) and Kyle Alcorn (8:29.44) for the men's steeplechase victory. MacDonald and Scott's Saturday races officially wrap up Liberty's 2011 outdoor track & field season. However, it should be noted that recent graduate Sam Chelanga will begin his professional racing career Sunday morning, when he competes in the inaugural B.A.A. 10K on the streets of Boston.
Watch Derek Scott's steeplechase final: