Track & Field Set for SEC Outdoor Championships
May 9, 2013
ESPN3 will stream the meet live during the following times: Saturday, May 11 - 4:40 p.m. - 7:45 p.m. ET; Sunday, May 12 - 3:50 p.m. - 7:45 p.m. ET. Dwight Stones, Larry Rawson and Lewis Johnson will have the call. The remainder of the meet action on Thursday, Friday and outside of the ESPN3 windows on Saturday and Sunday will be streamed live for free at www.mutigers.com
COLUMBIA, Mo. - The Gamecock track and field team travels to the SEC's other Columbia for 2013 SEC Outdoor Track & Field Championships, slated for May 9-12 at the University of Missouri's Audrey J. Walton Stadium.
All of the action begins on Thursday, but the long Gamecock event of the day is the men's hammer throw at 3 p.m. ET. On Friday, South Carolina's day again starts at 3 p.m. ET, with the women's hammer throw before running events kick off at 7:15 p.m. ET. Saturday and Sunday, the day's events begin at 2 p.m. ET.
The Gamecocks, who return 12 individual scorers from the 2013 SEC Outdoor Championships, will face stiff competition this weekend. Twelve Southeastern Conference men's and women's track and field teams are ranked among the nation's top-25, including nine in the top-10, according to the latest National Team Computer Rankings released Tuesday by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Junior Chris Royster earned points in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes and enters the weekend just on the outside of the conference top 10. Fellow junior Clayton Gravesande finished seventh in the 400-meter dash last season and is looking to hit his stride in Columbia, Mo., after beginning the season with injuries.
In the field events, the Gamecocks return redshirt junior Dorian Johnson and redshirt sophomores Joshua Suttmeier and Andrew Seay. Johnson logged a top-8 finish in the triple jump last season and has potential to sneak into a scoring position. The javelin specialist Suttmeier began his run to the NCAA Outdoor Championships at last season's SEC Outdoor Championships. The Gamecock has only made one outdoor appearance this season, recording a throw of 203-0. Seay was a surprise scorer last season as he finished eighth in the hammer throw. Senior Jarrod Hutchen is ranked in the long jump top 10 nationally and will look to score his first points at the outdoor event this weekend after illness held him down last year.
There are also two freshmen poised to make a major impact. Jermaine Collier is ranked in the SEC top 10 in both the 110-meter hurdles (14.21) and the 400-meter hurdles (52.52). Dondre Echols completes the 1-2 punch and is also in the conference top 10 with a 110-meter hurdle time of 14.22.
On the women's side, junior Amber Allen finished sixth in the 400-meter hurdles in 2012 and will try to repeat the performance. Sophomore Kayla Lampe, who returned home with the 5K silver medal from the indoor championships, finished eighth in the 5,000-meter run in Baton Rouge last season. Lampe registered the second-best 10,000-meter run time in the SEC at a school-record pace of 34:26.99.
Senior Kierre Beckles did not run in last season's championships, but won the 2011 100-meter hurdle silver medal. At 13.09, Beckles enters the weekend with the second-fastest time in the conference. Sophomore Erika Rucker narrowly missed scoring last season in the women's 400-meter dash. She brings the sixth-fastest time of the season in the SEC to town at 52.76.
South Carolina brings two shot put athletes who finished in the top-eight last season in senior Breanna Radford and redshirt sophomore Kaysee Sullivan. Radford, who is in the Gamecock top 10 of every event she has competed in, captured fourth place at last year's outdoor event and capture bronze at this years indoor championships. Radford sits at fourth in the conference at 54'4. Sullivan will look to build on her eighth-place finish from last season.
School record holders Jeannelle Scheper and Petra Olsen will also look to improve on their standings from last season. The reigning SEC indoor high jump champion lands in Missouri trying to improve on her fifth-place finish from last season. Scheper is currently knotted in a three-way tie for the conference lead at 6'2. Olsen finished sixth last season, but touts the third-highest conference mark this season at 13'6 ¼.
The men and women return the majority of their 4x100-meter and 4x400-meter relay quartets, all of which scored last season, as well. Both South Carolina squads finished ninth last season.