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Alum Wins Bronze

Alum Wins BronzeJennifer Toomey finished third at the U.S. Track and Field Championships this weekend, securing a spot on the U.S. National Team as it heads to the world championships. Eugene, OR.

Medford/Somerville, Mass. [06.27.01] Jennifer Toomey started running after college when a co-worker bet the 1994 Tufts grad that he could beat her in the Boston Marathon. She accepted the challenge and won. Little did she know that the victory would be the first in a series that would lead her all the way to the Track and Field World Championships scheduled in Edmonton, Canada this August.

This weekend, Toomey continued her incredible run through the track and field ranks, winning a bronze medal in the 800-meter event at the US National Track and Field Championships.

"I finished and I was so happy I started crying," Toomey told reporters after securing the medal in the finals on Sunday. "I just tried to hang in there and then run as strong as I could."

For Toomey, who has only been on the competitive scene for four years, the U.S. Nationals were extremely demanding.

"I was so scared -- knowing that you're ready, but not knowing if you can mentally put it together," the Tufts grad told the Boston Globe.

But the newspaper reported that she did more than "hold it together" -- she excelled.

"Rather than fold, Toomey ran a brilliant tactical race, keeping herself in position all the way to make the team," reported the Globe, which noted that the time in the finals was her personal best.

The third-place finish landed her a spot on the U.S. National Track and Field team, which will head to Canada later this summer to compete against the best runners from around the world.

In order to compete in the world championships, Toomey just needs to record a "world-qualifying time" between now and August.

It's a challenge, but Toomey has a reputation for turning challenges into success stories. After all, her journey to the Nationals began with a bet about the Boston Marathon.

"There's no way this guy is going to beat me," she thought at the time, according to the Globe. "We ran. I beat him."

And she hasn't looked back since.

Photo of Jennifer Toomey courtesy Alison Wade/NYRRC

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