USC Has Impressive Showing On Final Day Of Mt. SAC Relays|
April 18, 2015
WALNUT, CALIF. - Andre De Grasse won the men's 100m and 200m dashes while tying the Canadian record in the 200m, Dior Hall set a USC freshman record in winning the 100m HH and Conor McCullough won the men's hammer throw and moved up the Trojans' all-time list during the final day of the Mt. SAC Relays held at Hilmer Lodge Stadium in Walnut, Calif. today (April 18). The Trojans won six events on the final day and for the second time this season, the joke around the press box was that the meet had become "The Trojan Relays."
The junior De Grasse won an amazing men's Invitational 100m dash with a wind-aided personal-best time of 9.87 (+4.0w). His time moves him into a tie for the world-leading all-conditions time. Senior BeeJay Lee was right behind him in second with his wind-aided PR of 9.96. The Trojan pair was the only two collegians in the competition.
The USC women's crew also had a strong showing competing in the women's Invitational 100m dash. Freshman Ky Westbrook had a wind-aided PR of 11.20 (+2.3w) to place seventh, junior Alexis Faulknor a wind-aided PR of 11.22 (+2.3w) to place eighth and redshirt junior Tynia Gaither a time of 11.38 (+2.3w) to finish 11th.
De Grasse then came back to win the men's Invitational 200m race with a PR of 20.16 (+0.3). That time tied Aaron Brown's Canadian record and third-place standing on the Trojans' all-time 200m dash list. He now has the world-leading, wind-legal 200m time. Junior Just'N Thymes also ran in the 200m race and placed 12th overall with a time of 21.10 (+0.3).
USC's Gaither finished seventh in the women's Invitational 200m race with a time of 23.10 (+0.1) and freshman Deanna Hill placed ninth with a time of 23.21 (+0.6).
The freshman Hall ran a PR and set the USC freshman record in going 12.89 (+1.8) to win the women's Invitational 100m HH race. USC's previous freshman record was 13.06 set by Lauren Blackburn in 2011. Hall's time moves her from eighth to third on USC's all-time list in the event and moves her up to fourth among NCAA hurdlers. Hall now trails only NCAA champions Ginnie Powell (12.48) and Nia Ali (12.73) on USC's all-time list. Senior Melia Cox was fourth in the second heat and ninth overall with a PR of 13.25 (+1.3), just .01 seconds outside of the USC top 10. She moved into a tie for 14th on the NCAA descending order list. Hall and Cox posted the top two times by collegiate athletes in the event.
McCullough won the men's Invitational Hammer Throw competition with a best throw of 241-9 (73.70m), the third-farthest throw in USC history, second-farthest by a U.S. male this year and currently 15th in the world. The redshirt senior had a very strong series, improving as he went and systematically moving up the USC all-time list. With his second throw of 237-6 (72.39m), McCullough moved from fifth to fourth on the USC list, then with his fifth throw of 239-11 (73.13m) he moved into third on the list and bettered it with his final throw of 241-9.
Junior Jaide Stepter won the women's Invitational 400m IH with a time of 56.74, the top time in the first heat. Sophomore Amalie Iuel also ran in the first heat and finished fourth, fifth overall, with a time of 57.74. The pair posted the top two times by collegians in the competition.
The day began with a bang for the Trojans as the men's 4x100m relay team of Lee, De Grasse, Thymes and senior Bryan Mercado won the men's Invitational 4x100m relay race with a time of 38.98, just off their season best. The HSI/Nike team of Tyson Gay, Gil Roberts, Remontay McClain and Yousef Masrahi was second with a time of 39.14. USC became the first collegiate relay team to win the Mt. SAC Invitational 4x100m relay race since Mississippi State won in 2002 and became just the second college team in the last 29 years. USC last won the event at Mt. SAC when it was the 4x100-yard relay back in 1973.
The USC women's 4x100m relay team of Hill, Westbrook, Faulknor and Gaither then took second with a season-best time of 43.38. That improved the quartet's fifth-place standing on USC's all-time list. The Nike "A Team" of Mandy White, English Gardner, Kimberlyn Duncan and Blessing Okagbare won with a time of 43.05.
Freshman Kendall Ellis won her heat and placed third overall with a time of 52.96 in the women's 400m Invite. Her time bettered her USC freshman record and moved her from ninth to eighth on USC's all-time 400m dash list. Senior Vanessa Jones was fourth in the first heat and fifth overall with a time of 53.14. USC women's 400m record-holder Carol Rodriguez won the even with a time of 52.60.
Redshirt freshman Nick Ponzio took third in the men's Invitational Shot Put competition with a best mark of 62-11.50 (19.19m).
Freshman Randall Cunningham was the top collegiate finisher and eighth overall in the men's Invitational High Jump competition with a clearance of 7-1.75 (2.18m). He made his second attempt at the first two heights, but missed all three times at 7-3.75 (2.23m). Guowei Zhang of China won with a world-leading clearance of 7-8.50 (2.35m).
Cox ended a long day for the Trojans at Mt. SAC by competing in the women's Invitational Triple Jump and she fouled on all three attempts and had no mark.
Several former Trojan athletes were in action and also had big days: Alitta Boyd (triple jump - 8th), Remy Conatser (hammer throw - 4th), Ginnie Crawford (4x100m - 3rd), Jessica Davis (100m - 10th, 200m - 11th), Allyson Felix (4x100m -3rd, 4x400m - 1st), Jade Grave (hammer throw - 12th), Aleec Harris (110m HH - 1st), Joey Hughes (4x400m - 1st), Josh Mance (400m - 11th), Bryshon Nellum (4x400m - 1st), Carol Rodriguez (400m - 1st, 4x400m - 1st), Duane Solomon (600m - 1st), Logan Taylor (110m HH - 7th), Cooper Thompson (javelin throw - 6th) and Ryan Wilson (110m HH - 5th).