BYDGOSZCZ, Poland – RLC high jumper Jessica Merriweather will return from Poland without a medal after failing to qualify as a finalist at the World Junior Championships in Bydgoszcz on Wednesday.
Merriweather, 18, of Memphis, Tenn., jumped 1.74 meters (just under 5.71 feet) in the qualification round and was eliminated from further competition. Her season and personal best is 1.86 meters (6-feet, 1.25-inches) – a mark that qualified her for the World Juniors. Of the 13 athletes who moved on to the women’s high jump finals, eight jumped 1.81 meters and the remaining five jumped 1.78 meters.
In the finals, gold, silver and bronze went to Kimberly Jess (Germany), Mirela Demireva (Bulgaria), and Lesyani Mayor (Cuba) and Hannelore Desmet (Belgium), respectively. They were all within the 1.86m height. Demireva set a season best, and Mayor and Desmet set personal bests with their silver and bronze finishes.
Merriweather is a two-time Tennessee State Champion, and two-time National Junior College Athletic Association indoor and outdoor champion in the high jump. She will be entering her sophomore year at RLC this fall. Her teammate on Team USA in Poland was Shanay Briscoe who finished in a tie for 10th place in the finals with a mark of 1.78m.