Athlete of the Week: Charisma Taylor

Triple jump career-best trumps previous record; fifth in NCAA

Then-freshman+Charisma+Taylor+competes+in+the+long+jump+during+the+WSU+Indoor+Meet+at+the+Indoor+Practice+Facility%2C+Jan.+19th%2C+2019.++Taylor+placed+second+in+the+meet+with+a+jump+of+5.77+meters.

ABIGAIL LINNENKOHL

Then-freshman Charisma Taylor competes in the long jump during the WSU Indoor Meet at the Indoor Practice Facility, Jan. 19th, 2019. Taylor placed second in the meet with a jump of 5.77 meters.

CODY SCHOELER, Evergreen sports columnist

The WSU track and field team sent some members of its squad to the Don Kirby Elite in Albuquerque, New Mexico, over the weekend.

One member of the women’s team was able to take home first place: sophomore Charisma Taylor. Taylor finished first in the triple jump with a jump of 44 feet 2 3/4 inches. 

This was a season and a career-best for Taylor, who had previously set the WSU record for the women’s indoor triple jump at 43 feet 6 1/2 inches. She set that record earlier this season in late January at the Red Raider Invitational in Lubbock, Texas.

The standout sophomore’s personal record by over half a foot moved her up to fifth place in the triple jump in the NCAA. Her previous best mark would have her in 13th place.

Taylor’s performance in New Mexico proved that she could compete with some of the best competition in the country. Besides Taylor there were four other competitors at that meet who that rank in the top 15 in the nation. 

Oregon freshman Dominique Ruotolo, University of Texas El Paso sophomore Chantoba Bright and North Carolina State junior Michelle Cobb are 14th, 12th and 11th, respectively, in the triple jump. Oregon sophomore Lexi Ellis is second in the country in the triple jump, and Taylor finished ahead of her and everyone else in the field.

Taylor not only finished in first place, but she beat the rest of the field by a pretty wide margin. Her best jump was almost eight inches better than that of Bright, who finished in second. The difference between Bright and Ruotolo, who finished fifth, was a little over seven inches.