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Feb. 6, 2005

New York, N.Y. – South Carolina men’s and women’s track and field completed day two of the New Balance Collegiate Invitational at the Armory with the women’s team earning runner-up, while the men’s team finished fourth on Saturday evening in New York City.

While the Gamecocks saw a number of personal bests, USC women’s team finished just a point shy of LSU, who earned the top spot. Arkansas placed third. On the men’s side, the Razorbacks won the meet, while LSU finished second and Georgia at third.

Leading the women’s team was New York native freshman Natasha Hastings, who enjoyed a great homecoming performance. Hastings had a personal best for the second day in a row in the 400m, with a time on Saturday of 52.64 to finish second in the finals. Hastings also ran the third leg of the 4x400m relay that finished second with a time of 3:32.72, just behind LSU’s 3:31.92 first place finish.

Erica Whipple returned to the 200m with the fastest time of the day (23.59), earning first place in the finals. In the field, Precious Akins finished fifth in the women’s shot put with a throw of 14.88. Distance runner Karen Wigal finished ninth in the 5k with a time of 17:50.61.

For the men’s team, senior captain Rodney Martin finished second in the men’s 200m, with a time of 20.85. Martin held the Armory 200m record (20.80) prior to Saturday’s record-breaking performance by Xavier Carter of LSU, who ran 20.67.

Jumper Derek Pressley had an impressive triple jump performance, finishing in the top spot with an indoor season personal best of 14.85m. The men’s 4x400m, consisting of three freshmen, Jason Richardson, Keith Hinnant and Jamil James, and led by Aaron Luster, also finished second with a time of 3:08.76.

Both the men’s and the women’s teams will travel to Fayetteville, Ark. next weekend to compete in the Arkansas Tyson Invite. Complete results for the New Balance Collegiate Invitational at the Armory will be available at