Gamecocks Advance To Four Championships Of America Events
April 29, 2011
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By Miquel Jacobs
PHILADELPHIA - South Carolina advanced four events to Saturday's Championships of America finals to conclude day two action at Franklin Field in the 117th Penn Relays Carnival. In front of 38,806 fans, the men's 4x100- and 4x200-meter relay teams qualified for the Championship finals while two women's individuals qualified for their respective finals in Lakya Brookins (100-meter dash) and Kierre Beckles (100-meter hurdles).
The Championship of America finals will be held Saturday afternoon, spread across the final day of competition with the USA vs. The World events also taking place. The professional segment, the first event of the Visa Championship Series, will feature as many as six former Gamecocks and will air on a tape delay on ESPN2 from 8-10 p.m.
The men's 4x100-meter relay team of Clayton Gravesande, Antonio Sales, Chris Royster and Chris Maxwell qualified for Saturday's Championship of America final after taking eighth overall at 40.29. Less than an hour later, the 4x200-meter relay team also qualified for the Championships of America section by placing sixth overall at 1:23.30, making the Gamecocks one of five SEC teams to qualify for the eight-team final. That run is the fifth-fastest 4x200-meter relay time in school history, and the championship final will be run Saturday at 2:45 p.m.
The men's 4x400-meter relay team of Gravesande, Aaron Anderson, Maxwell and Sales placed 13th overall to qualify for the college final at a time of 3:11.10.
Competing in the Championship of America final, the women's 4x100-meter relay team took seventh overall for the second consecutive year. The quartet of Lakya Brookins, Shayla Mahan, Kierre Beckles and Gabrielle Glenn ran 44.71, improving their time from the preliminary round by .07 seconds.
Brookins also competed individually in the 100-meter dash and qualified for Saturday's Championship of America final with a time of 11.49. Brookins placed third and will look to successfully defender her Penn Relays title from last year with the final scheduled for Saturday at 3:45 p.m.
Beckles competed individually in the 100-meter hurdles and placed fifth, qualifying her for the Championship of America final that will be held Saturday at 3:20 p.m. Beckles had a time of 13.49 in the prelim.
Michael Zajac placed fourth overall in the men's hammer throw championship, tying his finish from last season at the Penn Relays. Zajac threw 195'8 (59.64m) Friday afternoon, just beating the rain that hit Franklin Field around 6 p.m.
The women's 4x200-meter relay was run by Kelsey McCorkle, Vashti Bandy, Sanura Eley-O'Reilly and Asia Delaney. The quartet ran 1:36.52 to place 11th overall. The sprint medley relay team of Asia Delaney, Amber Allen, Sierra Henderson and Scola Jepngetich placed 18th with a time of 4:03.50.
In the men's shot put, Louis Day posted a personal best by over one foot when he placed fifth in the shot put with a toss of 53'11 ¾ (16.45m). Junior Radiance Basden led the women's field events after placing fifth overall in the women's triple jump championship with a mark of 41'3 ¾ (12.59m). Senior Aimee Kodat placed seventh in the women's discus championships with a top toss of 158-02 (48.23m).
Freshman Nejmi Burnside placed 33rd in the men's 400-meter hurdle championship with a time of 53.80, narrowly missing his 2011 season best time. Lincoln Carr took 13th in the men's long jump with a leap of 23'2 (7.06m).
Saturday completes the final day of competition at the Penn Relays beginning with Lincoln Carr and Dorian Johnson in the triple jump at 9 a.m. The USA vs. The World segment of the Penn Relays will air Saturday from 8-10 p.m. on ESPN2. Former Gamecocks tentatively scheduled to compete are Lisa Barber, Miki Barber, Aleen Bailey, Natasha Hastings, Lashinda Demus and Johnny Dutch.