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    Spencer & Akinosun to Compete in Des Moines
    Ashley Spencer looks to make Team USA in the 400m this weekend at the USA Outdoor Championships Trials.

    Ashley Spencer looks to make Team USA in the 400m this weekend at the USA Outdoor Championships Trials.

    June 19, 2013

    CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Two Illini will compete in Des Moines, Iowa this weekend as defending NCAA champion Ashley Spencer will run in the USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships while freshman Morolake Akinosunwill look for a USA Junior title at the same track. Both the senior and junior USA Championships will be held from Thursday, June 20 through Sunday, June 23 at Drake Stadium. The senior meet will serve as a qualifier for this year's IAAF World Championships. Top performers will be a part of the America team that will compete in Moscow, Russia on August 10-18.

    "This is a great opportunity for both of them because they are both entering into uncharted territory," head coach Tonja Buford-Baileysaid. "This will be Ashley's first time competing with and against the Seniors.This meet is the best of the best with regards to American track and field and I'm excited to see how she will do. I'm pretty confident she will hold her own because she is such a fierce competitor. This will also be Morolake's first time racing against America's best Juniors. Ashley was able to experience it last year and was better off for it, now it's Morolake's time. I love how Ashley is such a role model and leader for Morolake. That has made Morolake's freshman experience here at Illinois so much easier. If they both can fair well at this level against America's best, then they are capable of competing against anyone in the world."

    Spencer will run in the first round of the 400m on Thursday at 5:20 p.m. with the semifinals of the event taking place on Friday evening at 7:36 p.m. CT. The finals of the 400m are scheduled to run at 5:08 p.m. CT on Saturday.

    This year, because of it being a World Championships year, the USA Junior Outdoor Track and Field Championships will be held at the same time and place as the senior event. Freshman Morolake Akinosunwill run the 100m and 200m during the five day meet with the top two finishers representing USA at the Pan American Junior Championships in Medellin, Columbia August 23-25. Akinosun, a two-time All-American, will look to be the second consecutive Illini to win a USA Junior title as Spencer won last year. The 100m first round will start at 11:50 a.m. on Thursday with the final taking placing at 1:56 p.m. later that same day. The 200m first round is scheduled for Friday at 12:20 p.m., with the final a few hours later at 3:45 p.m.

    The information below is the television/webcast streaming schedule of both championships:

    June 20: 11 a.m. - 10:25 p.m. - USATF.TV 
    June 21: 11 a.m. - 10:35 p.m. - USATF.TV / LIVE 8-10 p.m. on ESPN2
    June 22: 7:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. - USATF.TV / LIVE 4-5 p.m. on Universal Sports, LIVE 5-7 on NBC Sports Network

    Illinois Schedule at USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships
    Drake Stadium // Des Moines, Iowa
    All times Central

    Thursday, June 20
    400m First Round: 5:20 p.m. Ashley Spencer

    Friday, June 21
    400m Semifinal: 7:36 p.m.

    Saturday, June 22
    400m Final: 5:08 p.m.

    Illinois Schedule at USA Junior World Championships
    Drake Stadium // Des Moines, Iowa
    All times Central

    Thursday, June 20
    100m First Round: 11:50 a.m. Morolake Akinosun
    100m Final: 1:56 p.m.

    Friday, June 21
    200m First Round: 12:20 p.m. Morolake Akinosun
    200m Final: 3:45 p.m.

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