NCAA track and field: Siblings share moments, make memories at 2017 outdoor championships
Eugene, Oregon -- The 2017 NCAA outdoor track and field championships featured a crop of sibling pairs who competed in Eugene, Oregon this week.
As these student-athletes worked hard through intense workouts and competition, many were able to enjoy championship weekend with a family member also competing by their side.
We caught up with some of these sibling pairs on what the experience was like hanging out and competing in TrackTown this season.
UGA — Kendell and Devon Williams
Devon finished the men's decathlon in second, scoring 8181, while his sister Kendell took the title in the heptathlon.
"The journey has been awesome. He’s (Devon) had a little bit of a tougher journey, but it allowed me to learn a lot from watching his experience and I know he was proud to watch his experiences and I know he was proud to watch all of my experiences as well," Kendell said. "That’s why we went to college together, to learn and grow from college together. It’s bittersweet last time in our Georgia uniforms, but I am glad we got to do it together."
Devon said he was proud of his season, but a little disappointed about how Thursday concluded for him, not being able to take home the title.
"Looking back I was happy my sister was able to join me at UGA," Devon said. "My career hasn’t been all ups, but I am happy how she and I were able to be successful our last year and how we were able to finish our senior years."
Devon added that the duo even tend to make the same mistakes, espcially when it comes to shot put. He said throughout the years it's been nice to help each other out to became the best athletes they can be.
Missing in the crowd for the Williams' was their father, Blane, who is battling cancer. Their mom Terri was able to attend.
"It’s weird because he has never missed a meet. I’ve been running for 15 years and he’s never missed one," Kendell said. "It really hurt him not to make it here but he wanted to recover and be ready to fly out to California in four weeks. He’s back home watching the live stream. I talked to him before the 200 so he’s staying updated."
The dad's advice was to take everything one event at a time, and just execute.
"It’s cool to see siblings having success together because I know it makes the parents so happy," Kendell said.
It is certain the Williams kids are doing just that.
Arkansas — Lexi and Tori Weeks
The pole vault twins from Arkansas are pretty inseperable, and nothing changed when they headed to Oregon.
Lexi finished second in the final, while Tori took sixth.
"It’s always nice to have each other and have a person there to cheer you on," Lexi said. "We don’t coach each other, but give encouraging words."
Growing up, the twins tried various track events, but pole vault is what they excelled at the most and eventually stuck with.
The two are both getting married this summer, but are making sure they have very different weddings.
"We’ve had a lot of people ask us, 'Are you going to get married on the same day?' And we’re like 'No,'" Tori said.
"I feel bad for people who don’t have twins, because we just have so much fun," Lexi said. "We get to be here in Eugene together, get married together and share that experience, so it’s just amazing to have your best friend to go through all of life’s experiences with."
Danielle Aragon (Notre Dame), Christina Aragon (Stanford)
During the prelims for the 1500 meter race on Thursday, the Aragon sisters found themselves in the same heat to race for a spot on Saturday's final.
The two are five years apart, and never got to race against each other in high school, but with Danielle doing a graduate year at Notre Dame, the duo finally got to battle on the biggest stage.
"This is my first time running at Hayward Field but getting out there, lining up together and then both making it through has been what i’ve worked for my whole college career," Danielle said.
The sisters said there was comfort in knowing they were in the same heat and have always had a relationship where they aren't ultra competetive, but support each other.
Christina finished seventh and Danielle last in the 1,500 meter race final on Saturday.
Despite not the ideal outcome, the sisters were excited to still share this moment.
"I’m just hoping to have my last collegiate track race to be one to remember," Danielle said. "And I think it will be with my sister it's pretty special."
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