2012 Olympics: OU's Tia Brooks qualifies for U.S. track and field team
OU junior Tia Brooks will head to the 2012 Olympics in London after she qualified for the U.S. track and field team Friday.
The Grand Rapids, Mich., native finished third in the shot put with a 60-foot, 2-inch throw on her second attempt during the U.S. Trials at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
Jill Camarena-Williams and Michelle Carter, both Olympians in 2008, finished first and second, respectively. Camarena-Williams' throw was 62 feet, 10.5 inches, and Carter's throw was 60 feet, 11.25 inches.
In Thursday's shot put qualifier, Brooks finished fourth overall with a 57-foot, 10-inch throw — nearly three feet short of her outdoor best (60 feet, 7.25 inches).
The 21-year-old admitted the magnitude of the event was a little overwhelming at first.
"Coming off yesterday's performance, I was a bit nervous," Brooks said. "I'm younger and this is my first Olympic Trials. Seeing all the glitz and glamour has made me nervous."
But she shook off the nerves Friday and recorded the first 60-plus feet throw of the day.
Brooks is the second female track and field athlete in OU history to make the Olympics. Laverne Jones-Ferrette was a two-time Olympic sprinter for the U.S. Virgin Islands. She graduated from OU in 2003.