Kassanavoid, Weir win Gold, Bronze, 2 of many MOians @ NACAC

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Lawson, Missourian Janee' Kassanavoid won the hammer throw at the North American, Central America, and Caribbean (NACAC) Athletics Association Open Championships on Friday in Freeport, Bahamas. The Lawson, Missouri native and Lawson High School graduate won the first event final at the three-day meet.

World Athletics, the world governing body of Track and Field, Cross Country, and distance running, is comprised of 214 member federations of countries and territories. Those federations are grouped into six areas or regions across the globe. The North America Area is comprised of 31 federations in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

The NACAC Open Championships haven't been held on regularly. This year's meet is the 4th edition of the open competition, following the 2007, 2015, and 2018 meets. The NACAC Under-23 Championships have been held almost regularly on a biennial basis. The meet was held ever other year from 2000 to 2016, then again in 2019 and 2021.

This year's meet kicked off on Friday and runs through Sunday in the Bahamas, one time zone ahead of Missouri's Central Time zone.

Kassanavoid, who competed collegiately at Kansas' Johnson County Community College and Kansas State University, entered the meet a month after winning the bronze medal at the World Championships in Oregon. Kassanavoid, who is of Comanche Indigenous decent, had a 69.95m/229-6'' 2nd toss to improve her lead from the first round. Team USA was represented by the duo who went 1-3 at the World Championships, with Kassanavoid taking 3rd behind winner Brooke Anderson.


Mizzou volunteer assistant Jillian Weir placed 5th in the hammer throw at the World Championships for Canada at her alma mater Oregon and the re-imagined Hayward Field. Then, two weeks ago at the Commonwealth Games in Great Britain, Weir placed 3rd to earn the bronze medal in the hammer. That matched the bronze her father, Mizzou throws coach Robert Weir, won for Great Britain in the discus decades before. Weir arrived in the Bahamas in search of more international medals after taking 2nd at the 2018 NACAC meet and 2nd in the 2014 NACAC U23 meet.


Weir was in 2nd-place after her first-round toss of 64.27m/210-10''. She followed with three fouls. Anderson fouled on her first four attempts before a 5th round 68.66m/225-3'' to move past Weir into 2nd. Weir improved with a 5th round 66.20m/217-2''.

Kassanavoid got a final round 71.51m/234-7'' to improve on her 2nd toss and earn the victory. Anderson fouled on her final toss while Wier got a legal 65.83m/216-0''. Anderson's 5th attempt earned her the silver and Weir easily held on for the bronze.