March 29, 2016
By Lizzie Mikes
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Atlantic Coast Conference announced Tuesday afternoon that University of Notre Dame graduate student Kaila Barber (Middleburg Heights, Ohio) had been named the ACC Outdoor Women’s Track Performer of the Week. The honor is the first for any Irish track student-athlete in the 2016 outdoor season.
Barber, who was a 2012 and 2014 honorable mention United States Track & Field Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-American in the outdoor 400m, made a strong statement with a pair of national top-six times at the Yellow Jacket Invitational March 25-26. The Irish sprinter took first in the 100m hurdles with a personal best time of 13.04, which currently ranks second in the NCAA. She followed up with a second first-place finish in the 400m hurdles, winning in 57.53 – a time that currently ranks sixth in the nation.
Barber had a strong senior year in 2015, placing seventh in the 400m hurdle preliminaries (59.22) and third in the 4x100m relay (45.05) at the 2015 ACC Outdoor Championship. She was named to the All-ACC second team for the relay’s finish, and went on to finish 14th with the same 4x100m relay group at the NCAA East Preliminaries (44.51) in the semifinals. She raced as a junior and as a freshman at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, and capped her junior year with a 21st-place finish in the semifinals of the 400m (1:00.84) at the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships. As a freshman, she finished 22nd in the same event (1:00.27).
Other top weekly performers in the conference included Miami pole-vaulter Alysha Newman, as women’s field performer of the week. Duke distance runner Shaun Thompson and Florida State sprinter Darryl Haraway shared men’s track performer of the week honors, while North Carolina State long-jumper Jonathan Addison claimed men’s field performer of the week honors.
The Irish travel out to the west coast next, competing at the Stanford Invitational April 1-2. A full recap of the weekend in Palo Alto will be available on und.com.
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Lizzie Mikes serves as Media Services Coordinator at the University of Notre Dame. A 2013 graduate of Johnson & Wales University, she oversees credential management and is the athletic communications director for Fighting Irish men’s and women’s swimming and diving and track and field. She has assisted with numerous NCAA postseason events hosted by Notre Dame, and is heavily involved in the day-to-day tasks of the athletic communications office.