The Daily Gamecock

Gamecocks’ distance relays headline strong finish in Carolina Challenge

<p>FILE— Freshman sprinter Alysia Johnson runs in the Carolina Challenge in 2021.</p>
FILE— Freshman sprinter Alysia Johnson runs in the Carolina Challenge in 2021.

The South Carolina track and field team competed in the Carolina Challenge on Saturday, welcoming six Power Five programs for its second meet of the season. The Gamecocks had 20 top-five individual finishes and three first-place results from the five distance relays.

"What really stood out today was just the quality of this track meet," head coach Curtis Frye told Gamecocks Online. "This was a world-class meet. Some of our kids got introduced to what world class looks like and some of them can see they can fit into that category. Our team had some great performances today.”

Early in the meet, the Gamecocks saw three hurdlers advance to their respective finals, with Destinee Rocker and Caitlyn Little advancing to the women’s 60-meter hurdles finals and Filip Demsar making his way to the men’s final in the same event.

Rocker finished with the best qualifying time in the preliminary and went on to finish second, tied for the best individual Gamecock finish, in the women’s final with a time of 8.19 seconds. Little finished sixth in the women’s final and Demsar hurdled his way to fifth among the men.

South Carolina’s Evan Miller and Edward Richardson each finished fifth in the men’s 200- and 400-meter dash, respectively, and the Gamecocks earned three top-five placements in the women’s 400-meter dash by Alysia Johnson, second, Knowledge Omovoh, third, and Ashton Lindley, fifth.

The Gamecocks also experienced success off the track with seven top-five finishes from their field athletes. In the men’s high jump, Jackson Marseille and Kobe Franklin finished third and fourth, while Rachel Glenn earned second place in the women’s event. Kathleen Young and Malik Paul each finished with the third longest attempts in the women’s shot put and men’s weight throw, respectively.

South Carolina made their mark with top outings from their distance relay teams, who competed late Saturday afternoon. The men’s and women’s 4x300 meter relays each finished first with meet record times. The women’s 4x400 meter relay also earned first place by a half-second margin.

The team will travel to Clemson on Jan. 29 for the two-day Bob Pollack Meet, its first away competition of the season.


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