Sports

Stanford's Fisher sets collegiate indoor 3,000 meter record

 
Grant Fisher ran 7:42.62 on the 200-meter track at The Armory in Manhattan’s Washington Heights, edging Wisconsin’s Morgan McDonald (7:42.76) in the fourth- and fifth-fastest times in collegiate history. Photo by John P. Lozano/isiphotos.com.

Stanford's Grant Fisher broke Galen Rupp's American collegiate record in the indoor 3,000 meters while winning the race at the Millrose Games on Saturday.

Fisher ran 7:42.62 on the 200-meter track at The Armory in Manhattan's Washington Heights, edging Wisconsin's Morgan McDonald (7:42.76) in the fourth- and fifth-fastest times in collegiate history.


Aria Small/Stanford Athletics
Fisher led the two other collegians -- McDonald and Campbell's Amon Kemboi -- among the pro-heavy field of 13 past leader Pat Tiernan of Australia as they closed in on the gun lap. Fisher unleashed a 26.5 final 200 meters to win and shatter the school record by four seconds and his lifetime best by nearly six.

"That was big time," said Stanford coach Chris Miltenberg via a text.

Because the three fastest collegiate indoor 3,000s were run by foreigners, Fisher, who grew up in Grand Blanc, Michigan and is a dual citizen of the U.S. and Canada, broke the American collegiate record of 7:44.69 that Rupp set in 2009 while running for Oregon.

"Grant's race today was historic, both in the context of winning the prestigious Millrose Games and setting the American collegiate and Stanford records," Miltenberg said. "But most of all, I'm really excited with the way he raced today.

"He ran with incredible maturity and composure, and was bold and decisive when he made his move to take the lead. This shows how much he continues to grow in his racing savvy."

Chris Derrick's Stanford mark of 7:46.81 fell. It came in a runner-up finish at the 2012 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. Now, Fisher is No. 2 on the American collegiate absolute list, trailing only Oregon's Rudy Chapa, who ran 7:37.7 outdoors in 1979.

"It's a great sign of where he's at in his seasonal progression," Miltenberg said. "He's exactly where we thought he'd be at this point."

Fisher is an electrical engineering major and a nine-time All-American who is a senior academically and a junior in indoor eligibility.

He was the 2017 NCAA outdoor 5,000 champion, the 2018 NCAA cross country runner-up to McDonald and a two-time Pac-12 cross country champion while leading the Cardinal to team titles.

Fisher takes the year's U.S. and collegiate lead and will compete in the NCAA Indoor Championships on March 8-9 in Birmingham, Alabama. Fisher was fourth in the 3,000 last year at the NCAA's in College Station, Texas, and anchored Stanford to fourth in the distance medley relay.

"It's continuous growth with Grant every week because he has taken such ownership of where he wants to go with his running," Miltenberg said. "It's an exciting road ahead."

In Albuquerque, Stanford sophomore Aria Small won the women's triple jump at the Don Kirby Collegiate Invitational at the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Small jumped a personal best of 42-4 (12.90 meters) to win by ¾ of an inch over runner-up Fatim Affessi of West Texas A&M. Affessi held the lead over the first two rounds, only for Small move in front on her third attempt. That mark would stand despite Affessi's best distance, on her sixth and final jump.

The Stanford team of Julian Body, Louis Stenmark, Gabriel Navarro, and Isaiah Brandt-Sims won the men's 4x400 relay in 3:11.54 – the seventh-fastest indoor time in school history. Navarro and Brandt-Sims have run on four of Stanford's 10 fastest relays.

Lena Giger was third in the women's shot put, but the top collegian, at 55-11 ¼ (17.05m). And Kaitlyn Merritt was fifth in the women's pole vault in 13-10 ½ and teammate Erika Malaspina jumped an indoor best of 13-6 ½ for seventh, moving her past Ellie McCardwell to third on Stanford's all-time list.

— David Kiefer

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