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April 9, 2011

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By Miquel Jacobs
Media Relations Assistant

ATHENS, Ga. – Competing in the same facility where the SEC Outdoor Championships will be held next month, the South Carolina track and field teams put together solid performances on the final day of action at the Spec Towns Invitational held at the Spec Towns Track on the campus of the University of Georgia.

The Gamecocks earned seven wins in stacked fields that included competition from Georgia, Clemson, Virginia, Alabama, Virginia Tech, Vanderbilt and top American professionals that included World Championship gold medalist Reese Hoffa and USA Championship silver medalist Johnny Dutch.

The women’s teams wins included a season best run from Lakya Brookins in the 100-meter (11.34) in addition to sweeping the relays with wins in the 4×100 (44.18) and the 4×400 (3:42.41). The 20th-ranked men’s team had wins from Robert Razick in the 1,500-meter (3:55.79), David Wilkins in the high jump (6’11 // 2.11m) and the 4x400m relay (40.58).

“It was a good day for us,” South Carolina head coach Curtis Frye said. “Running 44.1 in the women’s 4×100 was good, and we also had good runs in the 100-meter. Amber Allen ran a 53.1 split as the anchor leg of the 4x400m relay, which was phenomenal. David Wilkins winning the high jump was huge, and it’s also good to see the men’s 4×400 continuing to run pretty well.”

The short sprints were dominated by the Gamecocks at the meet with the women’s team earning top multiple top five finishes in each run. Brookins led a 1-2-4-5 finish in the 100-meter dash with Shayla Mahan taking second (11.39), Gabrielle Glenn placing fourth (11.64) and freshman Vashti Bandy running a personal best 11.75 to take fifth overall. Mahan then ran a season best in the 200-meter dash at 23.67 to take second and was followed by Kelsey McCorkle in third (23.73) and Bandy in fourth at her second personal best of the day (23.97).

In the men’s sprints, Antonio Sales finished second in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes, both coming at season best times of 10.45 and 20.81, respectively. Chris Maxwell hit personal bests in both events while placing fifth in both the 100-meter (10.66) and 200-meter (21.28). Freshmen Chris Royster and Eyong Oma also hit seasonal bests in both.

“Shayla’s 100-meter run was good for her,” Frye said. “Vashti, Shayla and Kelsey all running in the 23-second range was inspiring for us as well. And for the men, Antonio Sales had a good weekend going 10.45 and 20.81.”

A pair of freshmen led the team’s in the 400-meter dashes with Sanura Eley-O’Reilly claiming second in the women’s section at 55.20 and Clayton Gravesande claiming third in the men’s section at 47.29.

The distance and middle distance events also took home some of the top times of the day, notably Beatrice Biwott’s season-opening steeplechase time of 10:42.08 that placed her second overall and pushes her into the national top 25. Carolina also earned second-place finishes in the women’s 5,000-meter run (Ashley Evens, 18:09.39) in addition to both hurdle events courtesy of Kierre Beckles (100-meter hurdles, 13.37) and Radiance Basden (400-meter hurdles, 1:00.26). Freshman Nejmi Burnside took second in the men’s 400-meter hurdles at 54.34.

In the field events, Matt Shuler had the top finish by taking second in the men’s pole vault at 16’6 ¾ (5.05m) despite coming across an injury. Junior Marvin Reitze placed fourth overall in his first meet of the season for South Carolina after returning earlier in the week as an unattached athlete in his return from injury.

Matt Shuler getting hurt was bad for us,” Frye said of the SEC indoor bronze medalist. “He turned his ankle on one of his runs, and it wasn’t good to see that happen to him.”

The women’s team had three third-place finishes in the field events with the three coming from Jeannelle Scheper (high jump), Angela Rummans (pole vault) and Aimee Kodat (discus). Scheper cleared 5’8 ¾ (1.75m) in the high jump, Rummans cleared 12’7 ½ (3.85m) in the pole vault and Kodat threw 154-05 (47.06m) in the discus throw.

In the early session, Asia Delaney ran a personal best 24.97 to win the 200-meter open section.

South Carolina travels to Auburn next weekend before taking a week off in preparation of the Penn Relays that will be held April 27-30.

1. Lakya Brookins 11.34 (+1.2) SB
2. Shayla Mahan 11.39 (+1.2)
4. Gabrielle Glenn 11.64 (+1.2)
5. Vashti Bandy 11.75 (+1.2) PR
W-200m Open
1. Asia Delaney 24.97 (0.9) PR
W-200m Invitational
2 Shayla Mahan 23.67 (+0.1) SB
3. Kelsey McCorkle 23.73 (+0.1) SB
4. Vashti Bandy 23.97 (+0.3) PR
2. Sanura Eley-O’Reilly 55.20
W-800m Invitational
3. Sierra Henderson 2:12.59 PR
4. Liz Locke 2:16.71
W-1500m Open
4. Jessica Hartman 4:54.41
W-1500m Invitational
8. Laura Pramstaller 4:48.82 PR
2. Ashley Evens 18:09.39 SB
4. Nicole Rheinlander 18:37.47 SB
W-3000m Steeplechase
2. Beatrice Biwott 10:42.08
W-100m Hurdles
2. Kierre Beckles 13.37 (+1.1)
11. Ceci Kryst 15.66 (+1.3)
W-400m Hurdles
2. Radiance Basden 1:00.26 SB
3. Amber Allen 1:00.43
1. Brookins, McCorkle, Mahan, Glenn 44.18 SB
3. Delaney, Beckles, Eley-O’Reilly, Bandy 46.07
1. Eley-O’Reilly, McCorkle, Bandy, Allen 3:42.41
5. Henderson, Kryst, Basden, Jepngetich 3:58.21
W-High Jump
3. Jeannelle Scheper 1.75m // 5-08.75
8. Staley Foster 1.62m // 5-03.75
9. Kayla Blake 1.62m // 5-03.75 SB
W-Pole Vault
3. Angela Rummans 3.85m // 12-07.50 SB
13. Tylar Mangan 3.25m // 10-08.00
W-Discus Throw
3. Aimee Kodat 47.06m // 154-05
9. Emily Laurence 38.40m // 126-00 SB
2. Antonio Sales 10.45 (+1.3) SB
4. Chris Royster 10.58 (+1.2) SB
5. Chris Maxwell 10.66 (+1.2) PR
7. Eyong Oma 10.99 (+1.3) SB
2. Antonio Sales 20.81 (+1.2) SB
5. Chris Maxwell 21.28 (+1.2) PR
6. Chris Royster 21.36 (+1.2) SB
9. Eyong Oma 21.86 (+1.2) SB
M-400m Open
5. Nigel Redic 50.60 SB
6. Alex Loose 50.64 SB
M-400m Invitational
3. Clayton Gravesande 47.29
5. Andre Carter 48.33 SB
6. Aaron Anderson 48.52
5. Drew Ricci 1:58.17
M-1500m Run
1. Robert Razick 3:55.79 SB
M-110m Hurdles
6. Chris Sharp 15.78 (+1.3)
M-400m Hurdles
2. Nejmi Burnside 54.34
2. Gravesande, Carter, Royster, Sales 40.58
4. Maxwell, Griffith, Loose, Oma 42.32
1. Gravesande, Sales, Carter, Anderson 3:08.20
3. Maxwell, Royster, Griffith, Loose 3:15.67
M-Long Jump
6. Lincoln Carr 7.13m // 23-04.75 (+1.9) SB
7. Dorian Johnson 6.91m // 22-08.00 (+1.7) SB
8. Joshua Jones 6.67m // 21-10.75 (+2.8)
M-High Jump
1. David Wilkins 2.11m // 6-11.00 SB
5. Chris Sharp 1.87m // 6-01.50
M-Pole Vault
2. Matt Shuler 5.05m // 16-06.75
4. Marvin Reitze 4.80m // 15-09.00
M-Shot Put
7. Louis Day 15.63m // 51-03.50
10. Andrew Finley 14.71m // 48-03.25
M-Discus Throw
5. Michael Zajac 48.36m // 158-08
7. Andrew Finley 45.76m // 150-01 SB
9. Louis Day 45.16m // 148-02 SB
Andrew Vaughan FOUL