Former ASU track star makes USA Olympic team

Desiree Davila, a former Arizona State cross country and track star, has qualified for the USA Olympic team. She finished second at the USA Olympic Marathon Trials, Jan. 14, in Houston.

Davila paced the field for much of the day but came just shy of the title as Shalene Flanagan was able to overcome her down the stretch. Nonetheless, Davila clocked a time of 2:25.55 over the 26.2-mile course to earn one of the three automatic qualifying bids to the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

It will be the first appearance for Davila in the Olympics and in qualifying she became just the second Sun Devil in history to advance to the Olympics in the marathon behind only Marie Trujillo (Mexico) in the 1984 Los Angeles Games.

Davila’s collegiate teammate and fellow Sun Devil alumnus Amy Hastings was fourth in Saturday’s race, finishing in 2:27.17 and just missed earning one of the three qualifying bids to the Olympiad. Hastings will serve as an alternate if Flanagan, Davila or third-place finisher Kara Goucher can’t compete.

Davila and Hastings helped lead the Sun Devil cross country team to a 14th place finish at the 2003 NCAA Championships, and Hastings went on to guide the team to top 10 finishes in 2004 and 2005.

There will be several former Sun Devil athletes competing for Olympics bids later this year at the USA Track and Field Olympic Trials, beginning June 23 in Eugene, Ore.