Delsea graduate Josh Awotunde finished fifth in the shot put Saturday at the USATF Championships in Albuquerque, his fourth straight top-8 finish at nationals.
Awotunde threw 66-1 1/2 on his third throw and had four throws of 64-11 1/2 or better in a very consistent series.
Awotunde placed 7th and 5th at outdoor nationals the last two years and was third at indoor nationals last winter.
He was sitting in 8th going into his third and final throw of the first round when he popped a 66-1 1/2, not far from his season best of 67-1. He would have made the finals either way, but that throw moved him up from 8th into 4th.
Awotunde opened with throws of 62-10 1/2 and 63-11. In the finals, he threw 64-11 1/2, 65-10 1/4 and 65-7 but was bumped into 5th when Roger Steen threw 66-1 3/4 on his fifth throw.
Awotunde, a Delsea graduate and five-time All-America at South Carolina, has PRs of 69-11 3/4 indoors and 68-1 3/4 outdoors, both from the 2018 SEC Championships.
Ryan Crouser won with a meet-record throw of 74-1 3/4, best in the world this year. He had the top four throws of the competition.
Awotunde, NCAA runner-up as a South Carolina senior in 2018, ranked 22nd in the world last spring at 69-3 3/4. He ranks 25th in the world this year with his 67-1. He’s No. 40 in U.S. history outdoors and No. 24 indoors.
At Delsea, Awotunde was Meet of Champions winner in the shot put and runner-up in the discus. He threw 61-6 with the 12-pound ball in high school and 192-5 in the discus.