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Feb. 4, 2016

Weekend Information

Date: Feb. 5-6, 2016

Start Time (Eastern): Friday @ 12 p.m. | Saturday @ 9 a.m.

Location: New York, N.Y.

Arena: New Balance Track and Field Center at The Armory

Live Results: Armory Invite Results

Live Video: Video Link (Subscription Required)

COLUMBIA, S.C. – It will be an action-packed weekend in the Big Apple, as the South Carolina track and field program will head to the Armory Track Invitational for a two-day meeting beginning Feb. 5.

The team is looking to follow up on a very successful 2015 trip, where five took home wins and put Carolina in the running for the team title. Standing in front of them is a field featuring a number of top programs from coast to coast, most notably Arizona, Ohio State, Miami, Mississippi State, Syracuse and Wisconsin.

While most of the team took time off from competition to rest, some members spent last weekend at a pair of meets, with the multi-event athletes heading north for the Penn State National, and others went to the Camel City Invite in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Friday started at Penn State, with Chalese Davis and Sarah Graham in the pentathlon and Alexandre Asselin, Markus Leemet and Simon Gyllensten in the heptathlon. Davis and Graham traded off wins in the first two events; Davis earned a commanding 991 points by winning the 60m hurdles but Graham answered back with a win in the high jump.

Davis broke open the competition in the long jump, where she set a new personal best in the event and earned another win. Her mark of 5.88 meters also moved her into a tie for tenth in program history, making her and Alexis Murphy the only two Gamecocks in the last eight years to earn a spot on the top 10.

In the final standings for the pentathlon, Davis won with a score of 3,825, 30 points off her personal best. Graham finished third, at 3,690 points. Davis’ score puts her 20th in the country, Graham checks in at 35th.

The men’s heptathlon, Leemet and Asselin had strong opening efforts in the first four events on Friday. Leemet finished in the top five in all four of the events, highlighted by a pair of third-place finishes in the shot put and high jump. Asselin’s top finish would be second in the long jump, with the team’s top mark of the season to date (7.06m / 23′ 2″).

The two Gamecocks were chasing Stanford’s Harrison Williams for the overall lead heading into the final three events. Leemet would beat out his teammate in all three events on day two and set a season best in the 60m hurdles. He finished fourth overall at 5,249 points. Asselin would not be far behind, picking up 5,051 points to break into the program’s top 10 list. His score puts him sixth in school history, passing Eddie Stoudemire’s 2009 score of 5,016. Leemet currently ranks 31st in the country with his score.

Out at the Camel City Invite, the Gamecocks had six finals on the opening day. On the track, Allie Mueller had the team’s top finish after placing 13th in the 800. She set a new season best after running a time of 2:17.58. In the team’s lone field event, Kierstin Williams finished 11th in the weight throw. The men would only have one final Friday, with Otis Jones placing 18th to lead a group of five Gamecocks in the 800m.

A busy day from senior Dondre Echols and a win from Michael Wamer highlighted the end of Carolina weekend at the Camel City Invite. Echols pulled double duty on Saturday, competing in the 60m dash as well as his standard 60m hurdles event. Despite not having any competitive experience as a 60m sprinter, Echols found himself as the eighth and final qualifier for the finals. He would ultimately place sixth in the finals, third among collegiate athletes, with a time of 6.92.

The two 60s would warm him up for his main event, the 60 hurdles. He would qualify seventh with a time of 7.84, putting him into a talented field of professionals for the final. The senior would step his game up in a big way, moving all the way up to third in the finals with a new season-best of 7.74 seconds. He placed ahead of Olympic gold medalist Ashton Eaton as well as Gamecock legend and 2012 Olympic silver medalist Jason Richardson. His time currently ranks sixth nationally.

Michael Wamer also had a productive day, bringing home the win in the men’s triple jump. His second mark of 49 feet, 10 inches held up as the top among 30 competitors, giving him his first win of the season in the event.

For the women at Camel City, Funlayo Oluwole was the top finisher in the team’s lone individual event Saturday, finishing 11th in the prelims of the 60m hurdles. The 4x400m relay team of Aliyah Abrams, Ahtyana Johnson, Maya Evans and Oluwole ran second overall at 3:47.23.

Live results and live video are available for the meet, and fans can also follow the team’s results on Twitter at @GamecockTrack.