USC To Hold Trojan Invitational This Weekend

    Junior Akawkaw Ndipagbor is coming off an outstanding indoor season which saw her earn individual All-America honors in the 400m race and as part of USC's 4x400m relay team.

    March 19, 2014

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    The USC men's and women's track and field teams will host the Trojan Invitational on March 21 and 22. Among the teams competing at the Trojan Invitational will be BYU, CS Los Angeles, CS Northridge, Purdue, Utah and Washington. Also as is tradition, there will be the L.A. city high school relay championships. This is the only home meet of the season. The meet is being televised tape-delayed on the Pac-12 Network on March 24 at 6:30 p.m.

    TROJAN INVITATIONAL SCHEDULE OF EVENTS - The Trojan Invitational will begin on March 21 with the hammer throw competition to be held at CS Los Angeles at 2 p.m. Then the action switches to Loker Stadium that night for the long jump at 5 p.m., followed by the steeplechase, 5000m races and the javelin throw competition. The main portion of the meet will be from 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Loker Stadium, with high school races beginning at 9:30 a.m. As is tradition, the Trojan Invitational features the L.A. City high school relay championships.

    NCAA INDOORS RECAP - USC had nine individuals earn first-team All-America honors at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, N.M. from March 14-15: Aaron Brown (4th - 60m, 6th - 200m), Tynia Gaither (6th - 200m), Aleec Harris (5th - 60m HH), Vanessa Jones (6th - 4x400m), Ashley Liverpool (6th - 4x400m), Akawkaw Ndipagbor (7th - 400m, 6th - 4x400m) and Jaide Stepter (6th - 4x400m). The 4x400m relay team bettered its school record with a time of 3:33.20 and Ndipagbor bettered her school indoor 400m record with a time of 52.47 in the 400m semifinals.

    RECRUITS SHINE AT NATIONAL INDOORS, TOO - While the current Trojans were competing at the NCAA Indoor Championships, some of USC's recruits were in action at the New Balance Nationals Indoor held at the Armory in New York, New York (March 14-16) and they had an impressive meet. Six different recruits finished in the top five in their events, with Dior Hall setting the high school record in the 60m hurdles. Hall won the girls 60m HH with an indoor high school record time of 8.11. She broke the record of 8.16 which was set by Jackie Coward in 2008. Her winning time would have been good enough to qualify for the 2014 NCAA Indoor Championships final in the event. Sprinter Ky Westbrook placed fifth in the girls 60m dash with a time of 7.49. Ricky Morgan placed third in the boy's 400m race with a time of 47.93. In addition, 800m runners Robert Ford and Jordan Wallin both placed in the boys 800m race. Ford had a time of 1:52.04 to take third and Wallin posted a time of 1:52.58 to place fifth. USC football recruit and track athlete Adoree Jackson took second place in the boy's long jump with a leap of 24-4.50 (7.43m).

    USC'S RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS - USC has eight 2013 first-team All-Americans returning including Aaron Brown (100m & 200m), Alexandra Collatz (Discus), Remington Conatser (Hammer), Melia Cox (4x100m), Vanessa Jones (4x100m), Loudia Laarman (4x100m), Jenny Ozorai (Hammer), Jenna Puterbaugh (4x100m).

    COLLATZ HAS GREAT START TO OUTDOOR SEASON - All-American junior discus thrower Alexandra Collatz began the 2014 season by winning both the hammer throw and discus throw competitions at the Rossi Relays on Feb. 22. She then won the discus throw at the CS Los Angeles Invitational on March 7 with a PR of 187-6 (57.15m) to better her second-place standing on USC's all-time list and close the gap on Kate Hutchinson's school record (189-5). She also placed second in the hammer throw with a PR of 181-5 (55.29). Collatz then bettered her hammer throw PR with a mark of 183-3 (55.85m) in finishing fourth at the Ben Brown Invitational on March 14.

    USC RANKING AMONG THE BEST -- There are currently 24 NCAA top 20 marks posted by Trojan athletes early this season: Men: Myles Andrews (800m - 20th), Remington Conatser (Hammer - 1st), Herb Dew (HJ - 5th), Viktor Fajoyomi (LJ - 2nd), Bryan Mercado (200m - T-9th), Alex Rohani (200m - T-9th, 400m - 4th), Jovonte Slater (100m - 7th, 200m - 4th, LJ - 8th), Davonte Stewart (200m - 1st), Allen Williams (110m HH - 10th, TJ - 15th) and the 4x400m relay (10th). Women: Lauren Chambers (Hammer - 2nd), Alexandra Collatz (Discus - 2nd, Hammer - 9th), Amalie Iuel (400m IH - 5th), Felicia Horvath (Pole Vault - T-17th), Tera Novy (Discus - 4th), Cameron Pettigrew (200m - 20th, 400m - 3rd), Tanya Sapa (Shot - 7th, Hammer - 15th).

    NEXT WEEK - USC's track and field team will compete at the Aztec Invitational in San Diego, Calif. on March 28 & 29.