June 26, 2017
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Fresh off a successful collegiate season that produced 11 All-America honors and eight All-SEC selections, the University of South Carolina track & field program spent last week at the 2017 USATF Junior and Senior Outdoor Championships. Six members of Carolina's 2016-17 roster were in action, and a handful of alumni joined the quest for tickets to next month's IAAF World Championships in London.
At the Junior Championships, rising sophomore Jordan Fields was Carolina's most successful competitor. The Jacksonville, Fla., native finished fifth in the high jump competition, with a clearance of 5-7. She also finished eighth in the 400m hurdles, running 1:02.29 in the semifinals to take the last qualifying spot and 1:03.20 in the championship final.
Two additional Gamecocks competed in the Junior Championships. Darrell Singleton Jr. placed 12th in both the 100m (10.80) and the 200m (22.70). Representing Carolina's distance squad, Anna Kathryn Stoddard clocked in 15th place in the 5000m at 18:03.71.
At the Senior Championships level, Josh Awotunde was the top performer among current Gamecocks. The junior finished 14th in the men's shot put with a top effort of 62-5. David Winters placed 25th in the 200m at 21.23, and 2017 first-team All-American Tye Williams had an off day in the high jump and was unable to record a clearance.
Several Gamecock legends were also on the track in Sacramento attempting to qualify for the USA's World Championships squad. Natasha Hastings came the closest, finishing fourth in the women's 400m with a time of 50.14. The 2007 NCAA champion finished just .14 out of a trip to London, as the top three finishers made the team.
Five-time NCAA champion Miki Barber was also part of the 400m run, competing at nationals for the 17th time in her career, but she suffered a disqualification in the first round. Three-time collegiate champ Shalonda Solomon finished 14th in the opening round of the 200m at 23.10, and she just missed out on finals after running 23.14 to place ninth in the semifinals.
On the men's side, 2010 NCAA champion Johnny Dutch was the top performer among Gamecock alumni with a fifth-place finish in the 400m hurdles. Dutch was in range of a top-three finish heading into the homestretch, but he finished .16 out of a World Championships berth in a hotly-contested race.
Rounding out the Gamecock contingent, 2008 collegiate champion Jason Richardson qualified for the semifinals of the 110m hurdles. Richardson's first-round time of 13.65 was good for seventh place, but he slipped to 11th in the semifinals with a run of 13.74.
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