Upstate Track & Field Posts Strong Performances Across Southeast
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The USC Upstate men's and women's track & field teams recorded solid performances in three meets this weekend, highlighted by school records in the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase, the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase and the men's 4x800-meter relay.
At the Duke Invitational, senior Carolyne Chelulei (Eldoret, Kenya) registered a program-best time of 11:22.64 in the women's 3K steeplechase, earning seventh-place. She broke her previous event record of 11:25.67 set at the Catamount Classic March 24.
In the men's 3K steeplechase, junior Christian Ritacco (Niceville, Fla.) also broke his own Upstate record with a time of 9:36.17, claiming ninth-place in Durham, N.C. His previous school-best mark was 9:49.05, which he set at Auburn in 2011.
The Spartan men's 4x800-meter relay team of freshman Evan Woodruff (Sebastian, Fla.), sophomore Joey Daversa (Chesapeake, Va.), junior Davey Dennison (Carlisle, Pa.) and sophomore Matt Johnson (Elgin, S.C.) took second-place at the Duke Invite. The Upstate foursome recorded a time of 7:41.34, beating the prior school record of 7:43.38 set in 2011.
Junior Kenny Sugishita (Arroyo Grande, Calif.) set a program-best mark for the fourth-straight week this season. He competed at Auburn's Tiger Track Classic yesterday, earning fifth in the hammer throw with a toss of 58.15-meters (190-09) to significantly pass the record he set last week at the Winthrop Invitational of 55.75-meters (182-11).
Johnson earned a sixth-place finish in the men's 400-meter dash at the Duke Invite, crossing the line in 48.78. Woodruff recorded a personal best with a time of 1:55.55, claiming fourth in the men's developmental 800-meter race.
The Spartans turned in seven personal-best performances in Spartanburg, S.C., today at Wofford's Terrier Relays. Freshman Isaiah Lyles (Inman, S.C.) posted personal records in the hammer throw and the shot put. He came in third in the hammer throw with a toss of 40.60-meters (133-02), while winning the shot put with a mark of 14.72-meters (48-03.50).
Upstate freshman Mark Rennix (Beaufort, S.C.) recorded a PR in the men's 1,500-meter with a third-place time of 4:13.96 at the Terrier Relays. His classmate Kenneth Human (Campobello, S.C.) won the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase, crossing the line in 10:26.24 for a personal-best time.
On the women's side, junior Velegar Mark (Spartanburg, S.C.) matched the Upstate record of 1.56-meters (5-01.25) in the high jump for a personal record leap. Freshman Erin Gethin (Cocoa Beach, Fla.) took top honors in the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase in Spartanburg today. She registered a PR of 12:58.88, while junior Laura Transue (Anderson, S.C.) wrapped up the personal records for the Spartan women today. Transue crossed the finish-line in 5:15.76 in the 1,500-meter run.
Freshman Breana Kwasnik (Greenville, S.C.) earned first-place in the women's pole vault at the Terrier Relays with a mark of 3.05-meters (10-00.00), while freshman Shawanda Stokes (Okatie, S.C.) came in fifth in the women's long jump with a leap of 4.96-meters (16-03.25).