USC To Compete At The Aztec Invitational This Weekend

    Myles Andrews

    March 27, 2014

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    The No. 13 USC men's and No. 7 women's track and field teams will compete at the Aztec Invitational in San Diego, Calif. on March 28 and 29. Several of the top sprinters and hurdlers will be rested this weekend, including Aaron Brown, Jessica Davis, Tynia Gaither, Aleec Harris, BeeJay Lee, Akawkaw Ndipagbor and Jovonte Slater.

    TROJAN INVITATIONAL RECAP - USC made its only home meet of the season a special one, winning 15 events and posting three NCAA-leading marks and five others which rank in the top three in the country. Remington Conatser won the men's hammer with a mark of 238-8 (72.76m), Jessica Davis the women's 100m dash with a time of 11.42 and Aleec Harris the men's 110m HH with a time of 13.55, all NCAA-leading results. In addition Tynia Gaither in the 200m (23.40), Akawkaw Ndipagbor in the 200m (23.54), Lauren Blackburn in the 100m HH (13.34), Jaide Stepter in the 400m IH (58.39) and the women's 4x100m relay (44.10) all posted times that rank in the top three in the country.

    CONATSER AND DAVIS EARN PAC-12 WEEKLY HONORS - Seniors Remington Conatser in the hammer throw and Jessica Davis in the sprints received Pac-12 weekly honors (March 17-23) for their accomplishments at the Trojan Invitational. Conatser was tabbed the Male Field Athlete of the Week as he won the hammer throw with a mark of 238-8 which moved him from fourth to third on USC's all-time list, leads the NCAA and is the seventh-farthest ever by a Pac-12 athlete. Davis was named Female Track Athlete of the Week as she won the women's 100m dash with an NCAA-leading time of 11.42 and ran on the 4x100m relay team which ran 44.10 which is tied for the second fasted time in the country. Davis' 100m time was her best wind-legal 100m dash since the 2011 NCAA West Preliminary Rounds.

    MULTIPLE MANIA - Senior Viktor Fajoyomi and Jemal Williams will compete in the decathlon and freshman Amalie Iuel in the heptathlon at the Aztec Invitational on March 27-28. Fajoyomi placed fifth at the 2013 Pac-12 Championships in his first season of competing in the event and Williams placed 10th. Iuel is competing in her first career heptathlon.

    USC'S RETURNING ALL-AMERICANS - USC has eight 2013 first-team All-Americans on this season's team, 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. Another week, another PR for Collatz in the hammer as she tossed the "ol' ball and chain" 185-8 (56.60m) to place fifth at the Trojan Invitational on March 21.

    USC RANKING AMONG THE BEST -- There are currently 23 NCAA top 20 marks posted by Trojan athletes early this season: Men: Remington Conatser (Hammer - 1st), Herb Dew (HJ - 14th), Viktor Fajoyomi (LJ - 8th), Aleec Harris (110m HH - 1st), Davonte Stewart (200m - 9th), the 4x100m relay (4th), and the 4x400m relay (11th). Women: Lauren Blackburn (100m HH - 3rd), Lauren Chambers (Hammer - 6th), Alexandra Collatz (Discus - 2nd), Melia Cox (100m HH - 20th, TJ - 7th), Jessica Davis (100m - 1st), Alexis Faulknor (100m - 16th), Tynia Gaither (200m - 2nd), Amalie Iuel (400m IH - 5th), Ashley Liverpool (400m - 7th), Akawkaw Ndipagbor (200- T-3rd), Tera Novy (Discus - 10th), Jaide Stepter (400m IH - T-2nd), Jenna Tong (300m SC - 12th), the 4x100m relay (T-2nd) and the 4x400m relay (6th).

    NEXT WEEK - USC's track and field team will compete at the Florida Relays in Gainesville, Fla. on April 4-5.