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March 27, 2014

COLUMBIA, S.C. – This weekend, nearly 450 athletes from 17 colleges and universities as well as other running clubs descend on South Carolina’s Weems Baskin Track for the 21st Annual Weems Baskin Invitational. Competition begins on Friday at 12 p.m., with the hammer and javelin throw as well as the women’s pole vault. On Saturday, field events begin at 10 a.m., while the 5,000-meter run opens the running schedule at 11 a.m.

Dates: Friday, March 28 – Saturday, March 29
Time: Friday – 12 p.m. | Saturday Field – 10 a.m. | Saturday Running – 11 a.m.
Location: Columbia, S.C.
Facility: Weems Baskin Track
Meet Schedule: Final Meet Schedule Get Acrobat Reader
Live Results:

Meet Program Get Acrobat Reader

The Gamecocks look to ride the momentum of their stellar start to the outdoor season at the Shamrock Invitational at this weekend’s competition. With a full contingent of student-athletes set to compete, South Carolina takes the track for the first of two home outdoor meets.

While most Gamecocks began their outdoor seasons last weekend, All-Americans and school record holders Petra Olsen and Joshua Suttmeier make their outdoor debuts on Friday. Olsen is set to compete in the women’s pole vault at 3 p.m., Friday. Suttmeier takes the field just after at 3:30 p.m., in the javelin.

A majority of the competition is scheduled for Saturday. South Carolina will have the chance to showcase their depth in the sprints in the 4×100-meter relay at 12 p.m., and the 4×400-meter relay, the final event of the day, at 5:30 p.m.

Awards Ceremony Set for Saturday
On Saturday at 1 p.m., the action on the track will break for a brief moment to recognize four deserving South Carolina student-athletes with the Horse Award as well as the Deronda Powell and James Bauknight Awards. The Horse Award is named for Gamecock track alum Bob “The Horse” Dempsey and was created by track alumni to honor what Dempsey stood for: a competitive spirit, a tremendous work ethic, and a zeal for making his team better. The Deronda Powell and James Bauknight Awards are named in honor of two long-time employees in the South Carolina athletics department that were known for their dedication and service to the University and the track and field program.

Holmes Named SEC co-Freshman of the Week
Sprinter Precious Holmes earned her second SEC Freshman of the Week honor of the season after her performance at the Gamecocks’ first outdoor meet of 2014. Last weekend, Holmes won all three of her events (400 meters, 4×200, 4×400) at meet record pace. She contributed 30 of South Carolina’s 184 points in their dominant win at the Shamrock Invitational. Her 400-meter dash time of 52.89 is the second fastest in the NCAA and tops the SEC. The 4×400-meter relay clocked in at 3:36.11 to sit atop the NCAA and the SEC.

Last Time Out
The Gamecocks kicked their outdoor season off at Coastal Carolina’s Shamrock Invitational over the weekend with a dominant 60-point win from the women and a second-place finish by the men at the scored meet. Both squads collected the Mayor’s Cup as the highest scoring relay teams as well. South Carolina athletes set five meet records and had the winner or top collegiate finisher in 11 events. Freshman Precious Holmes contributed 30 points and three meet records over the weekend. Holmes ran on the 4×200-meter and 4×400-meter relay squads and made her outdoor debut in the quarter mile. Times in all three events sit atop the SEC and Holmes is the second fastest in the nation in her individual event (52.89). The Gamecock 4×4 tops the young Division I rankings at 3:36.11. Redshirt sophomore Chalese Davis set the other individual meet record for South Carolina, clocking in at 13.75 in the 100-meter hurdles for the victory. The women’s 4×1 also ran the fastest time in Shamrock Invite history, nearly equalizing the time that sent the Gamecocks to NCAAs last year at 44.65. Freshman Natasha Dicks won the triple jump with the sixth-best mark in school history at 41’3 ¾” (12.59m). Mary Reiser became the third freshman winner of the weekend, running the ninth-fastest 3,000-meter time in school history at 9:57.45. Junior Megan Wall won the women’s pole vault as well, clearing 11′ 11 ¾” (3.65m) to start her season.

Led by freshman Jussi Kanervo, the men also saw success at the event. Kanervo won the 110-meter hurdles with a time 13.98, the fifth-fastest time of the year in the country and placed second in the 400-meter hurdles (51.52) with the 10th-best time in school history. The freshman’s 400-meter hurdle time is the second-best in Division I. Senior Drew Ricci captured the 800-meter run win, recording a lifetime best of 1:51.55. In the men’s javelin, redshirt freshman Kaleb Zuidema made his long awaited debut. After two years of injuries, Zuidema turned in the fourth-best throw in school history at 219’8″ (66.95m). The mark made him the top collegiate finisher and second overall.

Up Next
The Gamecocks head to Gainesville, Fla., for the Pepsi Florida Relays. The meet is set for April 3-5 at the University of Florida’s Percy Beard Track. South Carolina returns to Weems Baskin Track in two weeks for the USC Outdoor Open on Sat., April 19.