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Gators Track and Field Racks Up Titles at Tyson and Valentine Invitationals

Florida Gators track and field continued its indoor season last weekend by sending the team to two competitions, the Tyson Invitational at the University of Arkansas and the Valentine Invitational at Boston University. The majority of Florida’s athletes competed in Fayetteville, where the program garnered seven event titles and set three school records.

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Friday: 6o-meter Triumphs

The Gators made their presence felt early on in Fayetteville. Malcolm Clemons won the long jump invitational with a 7.84-meter leap. Talitha Diggs won her second 60-meter sprint of the indoor season with a 7.15-second dash. Kurt Powder’s 7.75-second run in the 60-meter hurdles gave Florida its third and final event title of the first competition day.

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Up north in Boston, Imogen Barrett set a new school record in the women’s 800-meter race. Barrett finished in two minutes, 1.23 seconds.

Saturday: Four More Titles in Fayetteville

For the third straight indoor challenge, Jasmine Moore took the top spot in the women’s triple jump. Moore’s jumps totaled 14.25 meters. Sean Dixon-Bodie put up a strong effort in the men’s competition, finishing as the runner-up.

Florida earned all three podium spots in the men’s 200-meter race. Robert Gregory, Jacory Patterson and Ryan Willie finished 1-2-3. The women’s squad found similar success in their face, with Gators checking in at the two through five positions. Diggs set a new Florida record in the women’s 200, finishing runner-up in 22.61 seconds.

Sam Austin broke the Gators record in the 800-meter invitational, crossing the finish line in 1:46:06.

After winning the 4×400-meter relay at Clemson a month ago and in Fayetteville two weeks ago, Florida claimed the event once again. The quartet of Emmanuel Bamidele, Jevaughn Powell, Patterson and Willie finished in 3:02.18, the third fastest time in school history. Powell is the newest member of the relay team, which used Gregory and Jacob Miley in the previous two indoor competitions.

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What’s Next?

Florida track and field will host a one-day competition this Thursday, February 16. The event serves to give its athletes one more chance to qualify for the Southeastern Conference indoor championships. The SEC competition is scheduled for February 24-25 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

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