USC Sprints Towards NCAA Championships

May 27, 2001


Fourteen members of the USC women's track and field team and 11 members of the men's squad meet the rest of the nation's best in Eugene, Ore., at the 2001 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships on May 30-June 2 (Wednesday-Saturday) at the University of Oregon. Competition begins at 1 p.m. on May 30 at Hayward Stadium, with the decathlon 100m. Field events begin at 3 p.m. with the women's discus, while running events begin at 5 p.m. with the semifinals of the women's 400m relay. The final events of the meet on June 2 will be the 1600m relays (women's at 7:30 p.m., men's at 7:40 p.m.). The No. 2 USC women's track team is seeking its first ever national championship after placing second to LSU at last year's meet in Durham, N.C. The No. 12 Trojan men's team is looking to improve upon a seventh place finish last season. Both Trojan teams finished second at the Pac-10 championships on May 19-20. Scoring for the meet is 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1.


CBS will televise the NCAA Championships nationally on a tape-delayed basis on Sunday, June 10, at 2 p.m. ET.


The Trojan men's program has won an unprecedented 26 NCAA outdoor national titles (including nine straight in 1935-43), plus two NCAA indoor crowns. USC's men also have had 106 individual champions over the years. The Women of Troy have had 12 individual collegiate champions, including two-time defending 100m champ Angela Williams, and eight top 10 NCAA team finishes in school history, including last season's second-place showing at the 2000 meet in Durham, NC.


The Women of Troy are ranked second by both Track and Field News (May 16) and Trackwire (May 25), while the USC men are ranked 14th by Trackwire and 12th by Track and Field News. The Women of Troy are predicted to score 63 points by both Trackwire and by Track and Field News, while the Trojan men are slated for 20 points by Trackwire and 18 points by Track and Field News.


Both teams are coming off second place finishes at the Pac-10 Championships in Berkeley, Calif., on May 19-20. The Women of Troy finished just two points behind UCLA in the what turned out to be the closest women's meet in Pac-10 history. Meanwhile, the USC men failed in their attempt at a third straight conference title, finishing just six points behind Stanford. Earlier in the season, the USC men snapped UCLA's 22-meet win streak, 82-81, behind heroic performance in the distances and throws, while the UCLA women beat USC for the ninth consecutive year, 85-78, in a meet that came down to the 1600m relay. On May 24, the USC men defeated the LSU men at Cromwell Field, 122-69, while the USC women defeated the Lady Tigers, 114-75.


Several Trojans are either at or near the top of the national lists in their events. For the Women of Troy, two-time defending NCAA 100m champ Angela Williams has the top time in that event at 11.09 (wind-aided), while senior Candace Young is fifth (11.22). Senior Brigita Langerholc has the fastest time in the 800m (2:02.03), while junior Aleksandra Deren has the fourth-best time (2:04.18). The Women of Troy's 400m relay is fourth on the list (43.64), while its 1600m relay is sixth (3:33.17). In the throws, freshman Inga Stasiulionyte has the third-best javelin mark (173-11) and sophomore hammer thrower Julianna Tudja is fourth on the hammer list (206-7). On the men's side, senior Djeke Mambo has the third-longest triple jump (54-4), while senior Norbert Horvath is fourth on the hammer list (230-1). Senior Dennis Kholev is third on the pole vault list (18-4 1/2) and the 400m relay is ninth (39.39).


The USC women finished second at last year's NCAA championships in Durham, N.C., ending up just four points from the title for the second straight year. It was the highest finish ever and third consecutive top five finish for the Women of Troy, who are considered to be the co-favorites (along with UCLA) for the 2001 title. The USC men finished tied for seventh--their seventh consevutive top 10 NCAA finish.


One season removed from a second-place finish at the 2000 NCAA Track and Field Championships--their highest finish ever--the Women of Troy are in a strong position to challenge for all the marbles in 2001. USC returns athletes who scored a total of 36.5 points at the 2000 NCAA meet in Durham, N.C.--more returning points than any other team. The returning point total is higher than what all but four teams scored at the entire championship meet.


The 2001 USC men's team accomplished something no Trojan team had done since 1977--a victory over UCLA in the annual dual meet. USC also finished second at the conference meet and have now won three of the last five Pac-10 team titles. The Trojans return five All-Americans from its 2000 team.


The Women of Troy's school and Pac-10 record 400m relay squad, consisting of Angela Williams, Candace Young, Malika Edmonson and Kinshasa Davis won the NCAA title last year in 43.14--the ninth fastest time in the world in 2000 (just behind China) ... Senior sprinter Candace Young, who has a personal-best and NCAA automatic time of 11.22 in the 100m, is a second generation Trojan All American--her father is 1972 USC All-American and NFL All-Pro tight end Charlie Young. Her sisters, Chanel and Cerenity, also compete in track and field for USC ... The current Women of Troy squad is re-writing the USC record books--a total of 21 current athletes are represented on at least one event on the all-time top 10 charts, including four school record holders: Angela Williams (100m), Brigita Langerholc (800m), Julianna Tudja (hammer), Inga Stasiulionyte (javelin) and the 400m relay squad.


Under the guidance of Director of Track and Field Ron Allice, the Trojan men are on a run of seven consective top 10 finishes (six of them under Allice)--a feat last accomplished during the 1970s under Vern Wolfe. Meanwhile, the Women of Troy have finished in the top 5 for three straight years and in the top 10 four of the last five years - a level of success not seen since the late 1980s. Last year the men's track team won its third Pac-10 title in four years and second straight under Allice. Then, at last year's NCAA Outdoor Championships, he led the USC men's team to seventh place and the Women of Troy to second. It was the women's best showing ever. In 1999, the men finished fifth and the women third. As a combined men's and women's program, that performance was the best in school history. In fact, USC was the only school in the country in 1999 that finished in the top five in both men's and women's track and field. In 1998, the Trojan men's team finished in seventh place while the women's team finished in fifth place. In 1997, Allice directed the Trojan men's team to its first Pacific-10 Conference title since 1977 (and 30th overall) before finishing third at the NCAAs. In 1996, Allice guided the USC women's team to its first-ever Pac-10 title and directed the men's squad to a 10th-place finish at the NCAAs. And in his first year at USC in 1995, he led the men's team to a fourth-place finish at the NCAAs. Allice is well known for his ability to win. His overall dual meet coaching mark is 200-38-1 in 34 years at five schools, including 11 state championships in 16 years at Long Beach City College, his previous stop before landing at Troy. Allice's programs have produced more than 200 All-Americans, plus 20 Olympians, four world record holders and seven American record holders. He has coached at his high school, junior college and college alma maters on the way to compiling his outstanding coaching statistics.


In addition to Troy's 26 NCAA outdoor titles (including nine straight, 1935-43), two indoor NCAA titles and 31 conference crowns, the USC men's program has had 38 unbeaten and untied seasons, including a string of 16 in a row (1946-61). Since starting the track and field program in 1900, the Trojan men have compiled a dual-meet record of 411-111-4 (.795). Since 1912, 61 USC trackmen have equalled or bettered world records, and there have been 118 NCAA individual or relay winners from Troy. Eighty-one Trojan men and 17 Women of Troy have won 128 places on national Olympic teams over the years. Trojans have won 27 individual Olympic titles and shared in 13 relay wins.


USC Men: At the NCAA Championships in Durham, N.C., USC scored 27 points to finish in seventh place--its seventh straight top-10 finish and sixth-in-a-row under Ron Allice.

NCAA Individual Champions: Senior Felix Sanchez won USC's 106th NCAA men's individual track title by running a school-record 48.41 in the 400m hurdles. His time broke Tom Andrews' 1976 time of 48.56. Sanchez was the first USC athlete to win the event since Andrews did it in 1977.

2000 All-Americans: Felix Sanchez (400m hurdles, 1600m relay),Norbert Horvath (Hammer), Sultan McCullough (100m, 400m relay), Vince Williams (400m relay, 1600m relay), Andre Ammons (400m relay, 1600m relay), Darrell Rideaux (400m relay), Leroy Jordan (400m relay).

USC Women: The Women of Troy track and field team made it a nailbiter, but couldn't hold off a surging LSU team and had to settle for second--the best finish in Women of Troy history--at the 2000 NCAA Track and Field Championships held at Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, N.C.

NCAA Individual Champions: Sophomore Angela Williams saved her best race of the season for last, running 11.12 to successfully defend her NCAA 100m title and give the Women of Troy 10 key team points. Senior Natasha Danvers broke her own school record by running 55. 26 to win the 400m hurdles (the first Trojan woman to win this event) and score 10 points for USC. The USC 400m relay won its event in a school and Pac-10 record 43.14.

2000 All-Americans: Angela Williams (100m, 400m relay), Candace Young (400m relay), Kinshasa Davis (200m, 400m relay, 1600m relay), Natasha Danvers (400m hurdles, 1600m relay), Anna Lopaciuch (1,500m), Brigita Langerholc (800m, 1600m relay), Malika Edmonson (400m relay, 1600m relay), Jennifer Vail (Hammer).

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