Gamecocks Travel North for 125th Penn Relays
Carolina opens championship season at historic Franklin Field
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The University of South Carolina track & field squad begins its outdoor championship season this week as the Gamecocks travel to Philadelphia, Pa., for the 125th running of the Penn Relays. The meet runs April 25-27, with collegiate events beginning at 9 a.m. ET each day at historic Franklin Field.
Befitting its reputation as the world’s oldest and most prestigious track & field meet, the Penn Relays once again welcomes a large, globally-recognized group of teams to Franklin Field, including over 70 NCAA Division I programs. Joining the Gamecocks this season in Philadelphia are SEC rivals Auburn and Vanderbilt as well as Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Georgetown, Houston, Indiana, Maryland, NC State, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, St. John’s, UConn, Villanova, Virginia Tech and others.
CATCH THE GAMECOCKS LIVE ON USATF.TV+, NBCSN
Gamecock fans can once again watch the Penn Relays live on NBCSN, which has live coverage of the meet Friday from 5-6 p.m. ET and Saturday from 12:30-3 p.m. While no Gamecocks are currently scheduled to compete during Friday’s TV window, Saturday’s coverage includes Championship of America finals in the men’s and women’s 4x100m and 4x400m relays.
When NBCSN is not broadcasting, fans can stream live coverage of the entire event through USATF.TV+, which requires a RunnerSpace +Plus subscription. Packages begin at $12.99.
Gamecock fans in the Philadelphia area can purchase tickets for the 125th Penn Relays through PennRelays.com. Tickets start at $20 on Thursday and Friday, and Saturday’s tickets start at $32.
“The Penn Relays meet is one of the most special dates on our schedule every season, and this year is no different. We consider this the start of our championship season, because where else besides the Olympic Games can a young person run in front of 50,000 spectators on live television? Legends will be made this week, and we hope to be a part of the action and hoist several wagon wheels before the meet is over. It’s going to be a great experience for our student-athletes.”– Head Coach Curtis Frye
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LAST SEASON AT THE PENN RELAYS
South Carolina won a pair of championship-flight titles at the 2018 Penn Relays. Yann Randrianasolo earned his second men’s long jump victory, and Lissa Labiche was victorious in the women’s high jump. The Gamecocks also won the college final of the women’s 4x400m relay, including current student-athletes Stephanie Davis and Tatyana Mills.
Overall, the Gamecocks finished with nine podium finishes at Franklin Field in 2018. Current student-athletes Hanifah Abdulqadir (women’s triple jump) and Hailey Sweatman (women’s pole vault) earned second-place results, while Milan Parks (women’s 100mH) and Armand Woodley (men’s pole vault) each finished third.
CAROLINA’S PENN RELAYS HISTORY
The Gamecocks travel to Penn Relays annually and have a long and storied history at Franklin Field. South Carolina owns 21 total Championship of America wagon wheels, with the most recent coming in 2017 as the Gamecock women captured the 4x200m relay title. It was Carolina’s fourth women’s 4×2 victory in Philadelphia, second only to the program’s six 4x400m relay titles.
In addition to the Championship of America relay titles, the Gamecocks have also won 39 individual championship titles and 10 college event titles. Four current Gamecocks are former Penn Relays winners. Maiya Dendy was part of Carolina’s winning 4×2 squad in 2017, Armand Woodley won the men’s college pole vault in 2017, Lissa Labiche won the women’s high jump championship in 2018 and Yann Randrianasolo was the men’s long jump championship winner in both 2017 and 2018.
Randrianasolo is one of just 11 Gamecocks to win multiple Penn Relays individual championship events, and he’s bidding for history this year as he aims for his third long jump title. The senior would be just the second South Carolina student-athlete to win three individual Penn Relays championships, joining Jason Richardson, the men’s 110m hurdles winner in 2006, 2008 and 2009. Only six athletes in Penn Relays history have won multiple men’s long jump championships; Randrianasolo would be the first since Indiana’s Greg Bell won three straight crowns from 1956-58.
LAST TIME OUT • APRIL 20 • GAMECOCKS EARN 14 WINS AT USC OUTDOOR OPEN
South Carolina finished its home season and honored its 23-member senior class April 20 at the USC Outdoor Open. Carolina won 14 events at the last home meet of the year, with victories coming from Adele Blalock (women’s pole vault), Isaiah Davenport (men’s discus) Stephanie Davis (women’s 400m), Jordan Fields (women’s high jump), Carisma Holland (women’s discus and shot put), Amanda Murphy (women’s hammer throw), Maryah Nasir (women’s 800m), Makyla Stanley (women’s long jump), Heather Stone (women’s 3000m) and Carson Strom (men’s 3000m). Carolina also collected both the men’s and women’s 4x100m relays and the women’s 4x400m relay.
In the women’s 3K, Stone led wire-to-wire, posting the fifth-best time in Carolina history, 9:49.83. Holland opened her day with best discus performance of her career. Her winning throw of 48.01m (157-6) is the 10th-best mark in Carolina history. Holland then recorded another career best in the shot put, moving up to ninth in Gamecock history with a throw of 15.68m (51-5 ½).
GAMECOCKS CLOSING IN ON POSTSEASON BIDS WITH TWO MEETS LEFT
Six meets into the outdoor season, the race is on as South Carolina looks to position itself for the postseason. Each member of the Gamecock roster is aiming to finish the season in the NCAA East Region top 48 of their event, which guarantees a spot at the NCAA East Regional Preliminary Round, May 23-25 in Jacksonville, Fla. Here’s a look at the Gamecocks currently in Regional position.
• 1. Quincy Hall – 400m – 44.53*
• 1. Quincy Hall – 400mH – 50.34
• 1. Isaiah Moore – 110mH – 13.25*
• 2. Yann Randrianasolo – Long Jump – 8.07m
• 3. Chance, Hall, O. Jones, Robbins – 4x400m Relay – 3:03.33
• 9. Darrell Singleton Jr. – 100m – 10.23
• 11. Noah Walker – 400mH – 51.36
• 12. Arinze Chance – 400m – 46.05
• 13. Armand Woodley – Pole Vault – 5.25m
• 15. Eric Favors – Shot Put – 18.49m
• 15. Yann Randrianasolo – Triple Jump – 15.61m
• 19. Rivaldo Leacock – 400mH – 51.86
• 27. Otis Jones – 800m – 1:49.63
• 33. Evan Miller – 100m – 10.39
• 37. Ben Bonhurst – Shot Put – 17.59m
• 42. Malik Paul – Discus – 52.31m
• 43. Darrell Singleton Jr. – 200m – 20.95
• 45. Ty Jaye Robbins – 400m – 47.10
• 1. Davis, Abrams, Mills, Jonathas – 4x400m Relay – 3:27.53*
• 2. Wadeline Jonathas – 400m – 51.56
• 5. Stephanie Davis – 400m – 52.24
• 6. Aliyah Abrams – 400m – 52.28
• 8. Davis, Stanley, Pennamon, Jonathas – 4x100m Relay – 43.86
• 11. Stephanie Davis – 200m – 23.01
• 11. Hailey Sweatman – Pole Vault – 4.25m
• 14. Wadeline Jonathas – 200m – 23.20
• 19. Makyla Stanley – 100m – 11.43
• 20. Aliyah Abrams – 200m – 23.33
• 28. Carisma Holland – Shot Put – 15.68m
• 30. Jordan Fields – High Jump – 1.75m
• 30. Aliyah Abrams – 100m – 11.52
• 32. Milan Parks – 100mH – 13.51
• 35. Amecia Pennamon – 100m – 11.57
• 47. Lissa Labiche – High Jump – 1.73m
* – #1-ranked time in the NCAA this season
BOTH GAMECOCK SQUADS MOVE UP IN NATIONAL RANKINGS
The Gamecocks moved into historic territory this week with the release of the latest USTFCCCA national rankings. The Gamecock men moved up four spots, to No. 12, their best ranking since 2016. The Carolina women also moved up; their No. 18 ranking is their best mark since 2009.
In the USTFCCCA’s Southeast Regional rankings, the Gamecock men are ranked second, and the women are fourth.
The USTFCCCA also released an updated set of #EventSquad rankings on Monday. The Gamecock men are ranked fourth in the 400m and 12th in the 100m. The Gamecock women are ranked second in the 400m, sixth in the 200, and 11th in the 100m.
THREE GAMECOCKS LISTED IN FLOTRACK PRESEASON RANKINGS
Three Gamecocks are ranked in the outdoor preseason top-15 in their primary events by FloTrack. On the men’s side, former Pan American and U.S. Junior champion Quincy Hall is ranked fifth in the 400m hurdles, and two-time All-American Yann Randrianasolo holds the No. 10 spot in the long jump.
On the women’s side, the Gamecocks are represented in the FloTrack rankings by Aliyah Abrams. The national runner-up in the indoor 400m is listed ninth in the preseason outdoor rankings, according to the publication.
APRIL 13 • CAROLINA POSTS INCREDIBLE WEEKEND AT GAMECOCK INVITATIONAL
April 13, 2019 will go down in the history books as one of the finest days in the history of the University of South Carolina track & field team, as head coach Curtis Frye’s program made a global impact on the track and retired the jerseys of two all-time legends at the Gamecock Invitational. Two Gamecocks surged to the top of the NCAA leaderboard and assumed world leads in their events, and Carolina alumni Miki Barber and Terrence Trammell became the first college track & field athletes in history to have their jerseys retired.
Inspired by the presence of the program’s all-time greats, the current group of Gamecocks combined for an incredible day of performances. Quincy Hall (men’s 400m) and Isaiah Moore (men’s 110m hurdles) moved to the top of the 2019 world leaderboard in their events, and Yann Randrianasolo (men’s long jump) briefly took the NCAA lead before finishing the day ranked second in his event. Overall, the Gamecocks posted 10 new entries in the program’s top-time record book, with Hall setting a school record. In total, Carolina won eight events; Hall, Moore and Randrianasolo were joined by Jordan Fields (women’s high jump), Kelsey Larkin (women’s 3000m steeplechase), Amanda Murphy (women’s hammer throw), Hailey Sweatman (women’s pole vault) and Armand Woodley (men’s pole vault).
Hall was once again incredible in his Cregger Track debut, setting a new South Carolina record for the sixth time this season. This time it came in the 400m, where he ran 44.53, the fastest time in the world this season. That breaks the previous Carolina record of 44.57, set in 2003 by Otis Harris, and it boosts Hall to the top of the 2019 NCAA leaderboard.
Moore posted a massive time in the 110m hurdles prelims, running a wind-legal 13.39, which was a personal best. But the senior wasn’t finished; he came back in the final to run a wind-aided 13.25, which ranks as the fastest time in the world and the top mark in the NCAA rankings this season. It’s also the third-best time in school history.
Prior to the start of the prime-time window, South Carolina officially retired the jerseys of Barber (1999-2003) and Trammell (1998-2000). The duo combined for 11 NCAA event championships and 33 All-America finishes. They were each named 2000 USTFCCCA Athlete of the Year as the top collegians in track & field, and they each represented the United States of America at the Olympic level, with Trammell earning a pair of silver medals in the 110m hurdles.
APRIL 5-6 • GAMECOCKS WIN NINE EVENTS AT SPEC TOWNS INVITATIONAL
South Carolina won nine events April 5-6 in its annual trip to the Spec Towns Invitational in Athens, Ga. Two Gamecocks were victorious on the opening day, as Quincy Hall won the 400m hurdles and Yann Randrianasolo was the Lewis Gainey Long Jump winner for the second season in a row. Hall’s 400mH time of 50.34, his first as a Gamecock, ranks ninth in program history. The Gamecocks also got a pair of new program top-10 times in the 1500m, from Anna Kathryn Stoddard (4:31.59) and Maryah Nasir (4:32.46).
Saturday’s seven winners included Aliyah Abrams (women’s 400m), Otis Jones (men’s 800m), Isaiah Moore (men’s 110mH), Darrell Singleton Jr. (Men’s 100m), Makyla Stanley (women’s 100m), the women’s 4x100m relay and the men’s 4x400m relay. Singleton’s performance was perhaps the best of the day; his 100m time of 10.23 obliterated his previous PR and ranks ninth in Carolina history.
MARCH 28-30 • WOMEN’S 4×4 STEALS THE SHOW AT FLORIDA RELAYS
South Carolina made its annual trip to the Florida Relays and left Gainesville with several strong results. Chief among the efforts was Carolina’s run in the women’s 4x400m relay. Stephanie Davis, Aliyah Abrams, Tatyana Mills and Wadeline Jonathas were together for the first time since their national title-winning run at the NCAA Indoor Championships, and the quartet somehow managed to outdo themselves again. Jonathas ran a furious closing stretch to overtake Florida and Alabama on the final straightaway, and the team’s time of 3:27.53 leads the NCAA and ranks second in the world as of April 10.
The Gamecock distance crew was spectacular, accounting for five new marks on the program’s all-time top-10. Anna Kathryn Stoddard (16:52.76) and Heather Stone (16:57.46) moved to fourth and sixth, respectively, on the program’s 5000m list, while Kelsey Larkin (11:15.98) ran the third-fastest 3000m steeplechase in school history. Allie Mueller (4:30.27) moved up to sixth in school history in the 1500m, Last but not least, the 4x800m relay team of Mueller, Maryah Nasir, Macie Kavanaugh and Sierra Biber ran 9:02.50, the seventh-best mark in program history.
Three other Gamecock relays and one more individual notched new program top-10 efforts in Gainesville. The 4x200m relay group of Arinze Chance, Darrell Singleton Jr., Evan Miller and Quincy Hall stopped the clock in 1:21.87, second in school history. Chance and Hall joined Otis Jones and Ty Jaye Robbins to run 3:04.08 in the 4x400m relay, eighth on the Carolina list and fifth in the NCAA this season. The women’s sprint medley relay of Milan Parks, Mathilde Coquillaud-Salomon, Jhari Williams and Sierra Biber posted a time of 4:05.08, fifth on Carolina’s records list.
Last but not least, Amanda Murphy moved to No. 4 in Carolina hammer throw history with an effort of 54.78m (179-9). Overall, the Gamecocks wrapped up the meet with 24 top-10 finishes in Gainesville, including 11 on Saturday with just 16 entries.
MARCH 22-23 • GAMECOCKS DOMINATE BUCCANEER INVITATIONAL, WINNING 18 EVENTS
The Gamecocks were in complete control of the Buccaneer Invitational, held March 22-23 in Charleston, S.C. South Carolina won 18 event titles at the meet, by far the most at the seven-team event.
Jordan Fields (women’s high jump), Carisma Holland (women’s discus and shot put), Wadeline Jonathas (women’s 200m), Kelsey Larkin (women’s 1500m), Rivaldo Leacock (men’s 400m hurdles), Morgan Lee (women’s 5000m), Milan Parks (women’s 100m hurdles), Malik Paul (men’s discus), Ty Jaye Robbins (men’s 400m), Bryce Simpson (men’s pole vault), Makyla Stanley (women’s long jump and 100m), Hailey Sweatman (women’s pole vault) and Noah Walker (men’s 110m hurdles) won individual titles on the final day of the meet. Carolina also won the men’s 4x100m relay and both 4x400m relays.
Carolina’s NCAA-winning 4x400m quartet raced the 200m, and the Gamecocks dominated the race from start-to-finish. Jonathas won with a time of 23.20, the eighth-best mark in Carolina history, and Aliyah Abrams was second at 23.33, the 10th-best time on the Gamecock records list.
Fields set a new outdoor personal best on Saturday, clearing 1.75m (5-8 ¾) to move up to sixth on the Carolina records chart. Freshman Dymier Jeffery came in second; her effort of 1.70m (5-7) is 10th-best in Carolina history.
MARCH 15-16 • GAMECOCKS WIN MEET-HIGH 11 EVENTS AT BLACK AND GOLD CHALLENGE
South Carolina opened its outdoor campaign March 15-16 at the Black and Gold Challenge in Orlando, Fla. Despite fielding a limited group of entries, the Gamecocks led the meet with 11 event victories.
The Gamecocks notched three program top-10 marks in Orlando as part of their 11 victories. Anna Kathryn Stoddard won the women’s 1500m with a time of 4:34.23, which at the time was the ninth-best mark in Carolina history, and long jump All-American Yann Randrianasolo competed in the men’s triple jump, where his mark of 15.61m ranks seventh on the records list. The women’s 4x800m crew of Allie Mueller, Maryah Nasir, Sierra Biber and Macie Kavanaugh laid down the ninth-best time in Carolina history, 9:04.39.
Additional victories in Orlando came from Otis Jones (men’s 800m), Lissa Labiche (women’s high jump), Isaiah Moore (men’s 100mH), Darrell Singleton Jr. (men’s 100m), Jeremiah Talbert (men’s 400m), Noah Walker (men’s 400mH), Armand Woodley (men’s pole vault) and the men’s 4x400m relay. Talbert’s win came in his first outdoor event as a collegian, and he was part of the winning 4×4 crew along with Walker.
MARCH 8-9 • 4X400M CHAMPIONSHIP HIGHLIGHTS NCAA INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS
The Gamecocks enter the outdoor season on the heels of the program’s best NCAA Indoor Championships in over a decade. The Carolina women finished tied for seventh, their first NCAA top-10 finish since 2007, while the Gamecock men tied for 20th, their best result at the national indoor meet since 2010.
The highlight of the meet was Carolina’s national championship in the women’s 4x400m relay. Stephanie Davis, Aliyah Abrams, Tatyana Mills and Wadeline Jonathas ran 3:30.76 to edge Texas A&M (3:30.85) and Arkansas (3:30.86) for the crown. It’s the 47th NCAA event championship in Gamecock history and the first since 2015. It’s also the program’s seventh women’s 4x400m relay NCAA title and the first since 2007.
The women’s mile relay was one of five first-team All-America finishes for the Gamecocks. Abrams placed second in the women’s 400m, and Quincy Hall took fourth in the men’s 400m then led the men’s mile relay to a fifth-place result. Isaiah Moore added an eighth-place finish in the men’s 60m hurdles.
Jonathas (women’s 400m) and Arinze Chance (men’s 400m) earned second-team All-America laurels while Yann Randrianasolo (men’s long jump) was an honorable mention finisher.
GAMECOCKS TAKE HOME THREE INDOOR ALL-SEC HONORS
South Carolina earned three All-SEC nods at the 2019 SEC Indoor Championships, held Feb. 22-23 in Fayetteville, Ark. Junior Quincy Hall collected first-team All-SEC honors by winning the individual men’s 400m championship. Hall set a school record in the final, running 45.69 to earn Carolina’s first SEC title on the indoor track since Jason Richardson took the 60m hurdles in 2009.
The Carolina women’s 4x400m relay squad and senior hurdler Isaiah Moore earned second-team All-SEC honors. The 4×4 quartet of Stephanie Davis, Aliyah Abrams, Tatyana Mills and Wadeline Jonathas won silver with a time of 3:29.56, second-fastest in the nation this season. Moore tallied his second-career SEC medal by winning bronze in the 60m hurdles.
Overall, Carolina finished 10th in the men’s competition and 12th on the women’s side.
RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS LOOKING FOR MORE OUTDOOR SUCCESS
The Gamecocks feature seven student-athletes with past outdoor All-America finishes. On the women’s side, Aliyah Abrams, Stephanie Davis, Maiya Dendy, Milan Parks and Makyla Stanley already own All-America honors from past seasons, with Abrams taking first-team status as part of Carolina’s 2016 bronze-medal winning 4x400m relay.
On the men’s side, Isaiah Moore and Yann Randrianasolo each return with outdoor All-America results under their belts. Moore was a first-team finisher in 2017 after taking eighth in the 100m hurdles.
The 2019 outdoor NCAA postseason begins May 23-25, as the top-48 qualifiers in individual events and the top-24 qualifiers in each relay compete at the NCAA East Regional Preliminary Round in Jacksonville, Fla. The top-12 finishers at each Regional go on to the 2019 NCAA Outdoor Championships, June 5-8 in Austin, Texas.
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
The Gamecocks begin the postseason in two weeks with the 2019 SEC Championships. Arkansas hosts the meet, which will be held May 9-11 in Fayetteville, Ark.