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May 29, 2014

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Redshirt freshman Kaleb Zuidema advanced to the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships with his top 12 finish in the men’s javelin on the first day of competition at the NCAA East Preliminary Round at the University of North Florida’s Hodges Stadium. Five other Gamecocks advanced to event quarterfinals on Thursday as well.

After two years of injuries, Zuidema will cap his first healthy season in the Garnet and Black with a trip to Eugene. The Gamecock entered the day’s finals in ninth with a throw of 219’1″ (66.79m) and posted his best throw of the weather-delayed afternoon at 225’2 (68.65m) on his first throw of the finals.

In the women’s 400-meter hurdles, Tyler Brockington made a statement by running a lifetime best 56.96 to win her heat with ease. Brockington broke into the South Carolina all-time top 10 in the event at last year’s NCAA Preliminaries, and jumped from the No. 8 to the No. 5 spot in the record book with today’s time. She will run in tomorrow’s quarterfinals for her second straight NCAA Outdoor Championship bid in the intermediate hurdles. In tomorrow’s quarters, 24 will battle for a top 12 spot to book a ticket to Eugene.

Freshman Jussi Kanervo finished third in his 400-meter hurdle heat to grab an automatic spot in tomorrow’s quarterfinals. Kanervo posted a time of 52.07 this afternoon.

In the 100-meter dash, the Gamecocks advanced both Chris Royster and Ahtyana Johnson to the next round. Royster won his heat with a time of 10.40 while Johnson also got an automatic ticket to the quarters with a third-place finish in her heat at 11.72.

The women’s 400-meter dash wrapped up the Gamecocks’ day. Freshman Briana Haith ran a lifetime best 53.66 and finished third in her heat to automatically qualify for tomorrow’s quarterfinals.

The NCAA East Preliminary Round continues tomorrow with senior school record Petra Olsen seeking her third-straight NCAA Outdoors bid in the pole vault at noon. Running begins at 5 p.m. with the first round of the high hurdles.

Men’s 100m Dash – First Round
5. Chris Royster 10.40Q (-0.3)
25. Kendall Kee 10.66 (-1.3)
Men’s 400m Dash – First Round
36. Eric Winfrey 47.35
Men’s 400m Hurdles – First Round
23. Jussi Kanervo 52.07Q
Men’s Javelin – First Round
8. Kaleb Zuidema 219-01 // 66.79m
Women’s 100m Dash – First Round
15. Ahtyana Johnson 11.72Q (-0.6)
Women’s 400m Dash – First Round
21. Briana Haith 53.66Q Personal Best
Precious Holmes DNF
Women’s 400m Hurdles – First Round
5. Tyler Brockington 56.96Q Personal Best
27. Tamera Harris 59.39
Women’s Long Jump – First Round
19. Alexis Murphy 6.05m // 19-10.25