During the Pepsi Florida Relays on Saturday, March 30, 2024. Photo courtesy of Lorenzo Vasquez.

Gators Track and Field Throwers Shine at UCSD Triton Invitational

Seven Gators made the trip to San Diego, California, this past weekend for the Triton Invitational, bringing home school records and a national No. 1 ranking. They also recorded personal bests and other impressive marks.

Gators Set School Records

Sophomore Alida van Daalen continued to one-up herself, resetting her school record in the discus throw for the second week in a row. She surpassed her previous best mark of 61.84m with a new University of Florida record of 62.23m Friday.

Van Daalen also recorded an impressive three throws over the 61m mark in the competition, helping to propel her to No. 1 in the NCAA in 2024 in the discus throw.

The nation’s best discus thrower also competed in the women’s shot put. In her season debut for the event, Van Daalen recored a throw of 18.10m, good for fifth-best in the country in 2024.

Van Daalen was not the only Gator to break a school record in the discus throw. Senior Kai Chang captured the Florida record on the men’s side. Chang’s mark of 61.65m topped the 17-year previous record, set by Wes Stockbarger in 2007.

The senior from Jamaica now moves into the No. 4 standing in the NCAA this year for the event.

Other Notable Performances

Will Gross IV brought home another podium finish for the Gators, coming in third. The senior from New York concluded the competition with a top mark of 66.04m in the hammer throw.

Freshman Gracelyn Leiseth earned a spot on the school’s top 10 list for shot put last week, improving her number with a throw of 16.79m Saturday. Leiseth remains 10th in school history with that mark.

Calvin Bostic put up a personal-best mark in the men’s discus throw. He also captured the No. 1 spot in the open division for the event. The junior from Citra, Florida, recorded a mark of 55.52m, beating his previous best by nearly four meters.

The Gators will be back in action at home next weekend for the Tom Jones Memorial Invitational.

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