Hobbs second-fastest ever in 60m

Aleia Hobbs ran the second-fastest time ever recorded to capture the women's 60-meter title in 6.94 seconds on Saturday at the US Indoor Track and Field Championships.

The 26-year-old from New Orleans, a member of last year's world outdoor US 4×100 championship relay, set an American record to steal the spotlight in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

"Unbelievable. It has been a long time coming," a tearful Hobbs said. "I'm just so thankful."

Hobbs fell short of the world indoor record of 6.92 set by Russia's Irina Privalova at Madrid in 1993 but she was .01 under the old US mark set by Gail Devers at Toronto in 1993.

"I knew for me to get the record I had to get out of the blocks," Hobbs said. "In the prelim my block start wasn't all that good so I knew I needed to just get out and finish like I usually do."

Two-time reigning 200 world champion Noah Lyles, who took Olympic bronze at Tokyo, pulled out of the men's 60 final with a left hip injury.

Lyles, who won the Boston Indoor Grand Prix two weeks ago in a personal best of 6.51, won his semi-final heat in 6.56 but then felt trouble.

"After the semi I went to go put my clothes on and I realized it was really hard to get up. I started realizing my hip flexor was tight," Lyles said.

"We tried to work on it extensively. We took about 30 minutes just working it out, trying to do some exercises, but it never fully went away.

"I'm not willing to take a chance with it with such a great outdoor season possibly on the horizon."

The meet gave Americans a prime chance to prepare for August's World Championships in Budapest and next year's Paris Olympics.

"Outdoor season is going to be lit," Hobbs said. "That's all I'm going to say. It's going to be lit."

Lyles said he was being cautious after seeing all he needed in his Boston triumph.

"After Boston I saw all I really needed to see in the indoor season," Lyles said. "Getting that down to 6.51, that was really the crescendo of the area I needed to be to be turning into a 9.6, 9.7 guy.

"As the season goes on, I'll get faster and we'll make everything progress as normal. But I can't do that if I'm injured."

J.T. Smith won the men's 60 final in 6.53 with Kendal Williams second in 6.59.

Two-time world champion and two-time Olympic runner-up Joe Kovacs won the men's shot put with a go-ahead heave of 21.55m on his final attempt.

"It means a lot," he said. "I've never won one of these."

Reigning world women's shot put champion Chase Ealey won her third US indoor title with an effort of 19.87m.

"I'm throwing a lot further than I did last season at this time," she said. "It's a good sign for what is to come for outdoors."

Reigning world and Olympic champion Katie Moon won the women's pole vault by clearing 4.80m.

Two-time world outdoor champion Sam Kendricks won his fourth US pole vault crown by clearing 5.91m.

Anna Hall, who captured the pentathlon title Thursday, won the 400 in a personal best 51.03.

Hall, 21, was third in the heptathlon at last year's worlds.

"It just foreshadows some big things coming," Hall said.

Justin Robinson won the men's 400 in 45.40.

Bryce Hoppel, third in last year's world indoors, won his third US men's 800 indoor title in 1:45.92.

Nia Akins won the women's 800 crown in a personal best 2:00.16, edging Allie Wilson by .17 of a second.

Josh Thompson won the men's 1,500 in 3:42.31 while Nikki Hiltz took the women's 1,500 in 4:17.10.

Freddie Crittenden edged Robert Dunning for the men's 60 hurdles title after both finished in a personal-best 7.49 seconds and Alaysha Johnson won the women's 60 hurdles in 7.83.

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