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Gamecocks Head to Armory for Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge
Track and Field  . 

Gamecocks Head to Armory for Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge

South Carolina excited for annual trip to New York City

Indoor Meet #3 – Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The University of South Carolina track & field team journeys to New York City this weekend for its annual trip to the New Balance Track & Field Center at the Armory as it competes in the 2019 Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge. The meet begins Friday at 12:30 p.m. ET and continues Saturday, with events starting at 10 a.m. ET.

The Gamecocks will tangle with one of the strongest fields in the nation this week in the Big Apple, including Albany, BYU, Columbia, UConn, Duke, Florida State, Hofstra, Iona, Lehigh, LIU Brooklyn, Monmouth, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Penn, Rhode Island, Sacred Heart, St. John’s, St. Peter’s, Syracuse, Temple, Villanova, Virginia, UCLA and Xavier. A pair of USTFCCCA top-10 teams are in the men’s field: No. 3 Florida State and No. 9 BYU. The women’s field includes No. 5 Florida State, No. 15 South Carolina, No. 20 Ohio State and No. 22 Penn State.


Gamecock fans can watch the entire Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge with a RunnerSpace +PLUS subscription, with passes beginning at $12.99. Also, NBC Sports Gold subscribers can watch two hours of action Saturday beginning at 12 p.m. ET.



“Student life and constantly having opportunities for our students to have great experiences is important. Many times, our schedule doesn’t allow us to get out of the region, but New York and the Northeast are great places to recruit. To be able to go to Penn Relays and to go to New York is special for our program. We were one of the initial teams at this meet. We helped create this meet. We’re a part of this meet and dominated it for years. We’d like to continue to be a nationwide program. We’re not just a regional team. We have a lot of kids from this part of the country and a lot of alumni in New York.” – Head Coach Curtis Frye




Curtis Frye’s team officially opened the Carolina Indoor Track & Field Complex Jan. 18-19 with the Gamecock Inaugural. The meet was a smashing success, as over 35 teams and 1,200 student-athletes were on hand to celebrate the first collegiate meet in Carolina’s new home.

The Gamecocks won 11 events at the historic meet, led by senior Arinze Chance’s effort in the men’s 400m Invite. Chance set a new school record with his time of 46.15. That’s also a Guyanese national record, the fastest time in the NCAA this season and the fastest time in the world in 2019.

Other men’s winners at the Gamecock Inaugural include Otis Jones (800m) Yann Randrianasolo (Long Jump Invite), Noah Walker (Open 400m) and the 4x400m Relay.

The top women’s performer at the Gamecock Inaugural was junior Anna Kathryn Stoddard, who won the 3000m with a personal-record time of 10:01.77, more than 12 seconds better than her previous PR. Stoddard then anchored the Distance Medley Relay to a winning run of 11:48.77 on Saturday, which ranks as the seventh-fastest time in the NCAA this season.

Additional women’s champions included Aliyah Abrams (200m Invite) Stephanie Davis (400m Invite), Maiya Dendy (60m Invite) and Carisma Holland (Shot Put Invite)


Senior Arinze Chance was named SEC Men’s Co-Runner of the Week Jan. 22 for his efforts at the Gamecock Inaugural. Chance won the 400m Invite with a school-record time of 46.15, the fastest time in the NCAA this season.

Chance is the second Gamecock in as many weeks to take home SEC weekly honors. Aliyah Abrams was named Women’s Runner of the Week Jan. 15 for her performance at the Orange & Purple Elite. The redshirt junior won the 400m with a time of 52.87, which at the time was the best mark in the NCAA in 2019.


The Gamecocks have a rich history of competition over the last two decades at The Armory, having participated in various meets at the facility. Last season, both the Carolina men and women finished fourth in the team competition at the rebranded Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge. Three Gamecocks earned individual victories last season, including Hanifah Abdulqadir in the women’s triple jump.

The Gamecocks last claimed a team title at The Armory in 2017, when the women’s team was victorious. Among current Gamecocks, Aliyah Abrams led the way as part of Carolina’s winning 4x400m relay, and the women’s mile relay was also triumphant in 2016.


The South Carolina women’s team checks in 15th in the latest USTFCCCA national team rankings, released Jan. 22. Nine different Gamecocks have individual marks contributing to the ranking, led by the women’s 4x400m relay of Stephanie Davis, Wadeline Jonathas, Tatyana Mills and Aliyah Abrams (3rd). Hanifah Abdulqadir is ranked eighth in the triple jump, while Lissa Labiche and Jordan Fields each hold the ninth ranking in the high jump. This week’s rankings utilize new personal bests set in 2019 as well as existing marks from previous seasons.


Through one week of the 2019 season, the Gamecocks feature 16 student-athletes and two relays with NCAA top-50 rankings in their individual events. The top-16 student-athletes in each event will qualify for the 2019 NCAA Indoor Championships, to be held March 8-9 in Birmingham, Ala.

• Arinze Chance leads the way for the Gamecocks; his 400m time of 46.15 from the Gamecock Inaugural leads the NCAA.

• Three Gamecocks are ranked in the national top-10 in the women’s 400m. Aliyah Abrams is ranked third at 52.87, Wadeline Jonathas is listed fifth with a mark of 53.00, and Stephanie Davis is up to ninth at 53.35.

• The women’s 4x400m relay quartet of Davis, Jonathas, Tatyana Mills and Abrams is ranked third nationally with a time of 3:34.43.

• The women’s DMR group of Allie Mueller, Briana Reckling, Macie Kavanaugh and Anna Kathryn Stoddard is ranked seventh with a mark of 11:48.77.

• Two-time All-American Yann Randrianasolo ranks eighth in the men’s long jump with a mark of 7.74m from the Orange & Purple Elite.

• The men’s 4×4 squad of Chance, Ty Jaye Robbins, Otis Jones and Jordan Sessom has a top time of 3:10.56, 15th-best in the nation.

• Jones ranks 19th in the 800m with a time of 1:51.29 as he attempts to qualify for his first NCAA Championships.

• In the women’s 60m hurdles, Caitlyn Little’s time of 8.28 ranks 15th, and Milan Parks is in 24th at 8.35.

• Maiya Dendy is ranked 27th in the women’s 60m, with a time of 7.41 set at the Gamecock Inaugural.

• In the men’s 60m hurdles, Isaiah Moore is ranked 27th with a time of 7.89.

• Two Gamecocks are ranked in the women’s 200m, with Abrams at 32nd with a mark of 23.80 and Davis 47th at 24.11.

• In the men’s 60m, Darrell Singleton Jr. (6.73) is listed 33rd and Evan Miller (6.74) is ranked 38th.

• In the men’s shot put, Eric Favors is ranked 41st with a top mark of 17.92m.

• Freshman Carisma Holland is ranked 44th in the women’s shot put after winning the event at the Gamecock Inaugural with a mark of 15.36m.


South Carolina won nine events at the Orange & Purple Elite, held Jan. 11 in Clemson, S.C. The Gamecocks finished tied with Florida State for the most victories at the six-team event.

Leading the way for Carolina on the women’s side was redshirt junior Aliyah Abrams, who captured the 400m title with a time of 52.78 and anchored Carolina’s winning 4x400m relay team, which stopped the clock in 3:34.43. Additional women’s event winners include Adele Blalock (pole vault) and Macie Kavanaugh (600m).

Like Abrams, Otis Jones was a two-time winner on the men’s side. The redshirt senior won the 600m with a late closing stretch to post a time of 1:18.77, and he led off the 4x400m relay that took the victory in 3:11.23. Other men’s winners for the Gamecocks included Arinze Chance (300m), Yann Randrianasolo (long jump) and Armand Woodley (pole vault).


South Carolina took its sprinters and hurdlers to the Clemson Opener on Dec. 8. The Gamecocks dominated, winning seven of the nine events they entered.

Two returning All-Americans were victorious at Clemson, as Aliyah Abrams took the women’s 300m in 37.45, and Isaiah Moore won the men’s 60m hurdles, his first race as a Gamecock since June of 2017, with a time of 7.89. Abrams led the 4x400m relay team to a victory, and Darrell Singleton Jr. set a huge PR in the men’s 60m, with a winning time of 6.73.

Other winners at Clemson included Maiya Dendy (women’s 60m), Stephanie Davis (women’s 200m) and Milan Parks (women’s 60m hurdles).


Five Gamecocks were selected as Preseason All-Americans by FloTrack as the organization picked its top-16 student-athletes in each event over the holidays. Leading the way was junior college transfer Quincy Hall, who was picked third in the nation in the men’s 400m. Hanifah Abdulqadir was picked ninth in the women’s triple jump, while fellow jumps squad members Yann Randrianasolo (11th, men’s long jump) and Jordan Fields (12th, women’s high jump) were also selected. Last but not least, senior 800m specialist Otis Jones was picked 15th in his signature event.


South Carolina returns 10 student-athletes with past experience as NCAA All-Americans in 2019. Leading the way is redshirt junior Aliyah Abrams, who was part of Carolina’s third-place finish in the women’s 4x400m relay in 2016 and also earned top-16 finishes in the 2016 outdoor 400m and 2017 indoor 4x400m. Long jumper Yann Randrianasolo earned second-team status twice last season, as did high jumper Lissa Labiche, and Isaiah Moore was a first-team All-American in the outdoor 110m hurdles in 2017.

Other returning second-team All-Americans from last season include Hanifah Abdulqadir (indoor triple jump), Jordan Fields (indoor high jump), and the outdoor 4x100m relay team of Stephanie Davis, Maiya Dendy, Milan Parks and Makyla Stanley.

In addition to the on-track All-Americans, the Gamecocks welcome back 2018 Google Cloud Academic All-American Allie Mueller for her final college campaign. Mueller sported a 4.00 GPA in pharmacy last season and finished 11th in the SEC in the indoor mile.


Carolina’s 2019 roster is bolstered by five transfers that already sport experience competing at the highest levels of collegiate track & field. Leading the way is College of the Sequoias transfer Quincy Hall, who enters as a junior and is a prime candidate to compete for national titles in the 400m and 400m hurdles. Hall is a former Pan American Games and U.S. Junior national champion in the 400mH, and he never lost a race in two seasons at Sequoias.

Two new Gamecocks join the men’s roster after competing at the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships as freshmen. Kennesaw State transfer Tyler Jones qualified for the meet in the long jump, while Carlos Wilson represented Texas State in the 4x100m relay. Wilson was also an individual NCAA West Regional qualifier in the 100m, and USC Upstate transfer Noah Walker qualified for the NCAA East Regional in the 400m hurdles.

On the women’s side, Carolina welcomes Wadeline Jonathas to the family after two outstanding seasons at UMass Boston. The Haiti native won nine individual NCAA Division III national championships in her two seasons with the Beacons, earning indoor 400m and outdoor 200m and 400m titles in 2017 along with indoor 60m, 200m, 400m and long jump titles and outdoor 200m and 400m titles in 2018. Jonathas scored enough points at the 2018 NCAA DIII indoor meet to single-handedly win the team national title for UMass Boston, and she set DIII national records in six different events.


South Carolina is back home for the Carolina Challenge next week. The three-day meet begins Thursday, Jan. 31 with multi action and continues through Saturday, Feb. 2.