GAINESVILLE, Fla. – After having to push back the start of the Pepsi Florida Relays due to rain, Friday’s day of action in Gainesville didn’t disappoint.
Between personal bests, school records and new NCAA leads, the Gators kicked off the 2022 Pepsi Florida Relays in fashion. Read more: Jasmine Moore wins long jump at 2022 Florida Relays
Florida started early in the Women’s Long Jump Invite with a straight sweep from Jasmine Moore (6.52m/21-4.75) and Claire Bryant (6.47m/21-2.75).
Combined with Florida legend Yanis David’s third-place finish, the Gators had an outstanding day on the runways, dominating the rest of the competition.
On the men’s side, Florida got big-time performances from Malcolm Clemons (7.63m/25-0.5) and Caleb Foster (7.61m/24-11.75). The duo finished third and fourth in a competitive field.
Mark Porter made his Florida debut in the Javelin after transferring in over the summer. His season-opening throw of 68.71m/225-05 moved him into sixth in Florida history in the event.
After opening up at the Texas Relays, Zach Godbold came just short of a personal best with an impressive throw of 63.57m/208-06.
The Gators got a series of personal bests across the 1500 meters on both the men’s and women’s side. Of the eight athletes running the event, seven clocked personal bests in the event including an outstanding 4:19.12 from Vasileia Spyrou.
The 200-meter races are where the Gators put on a show.
Talitha Diggs ran a wind-legal 22.78 to take the NCAA lead. Her mark was just off a personal best of 22.75 in the event and set up nicely for strong series of times in the event.
Fahnbulleh Shocks Boling In 200m Heat
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In his first 200-meter race of the outdoor season, Joseph Fahnbulleh put up an impressive 20.22, winning a heat chalk full of All-Americans. Among the top athletes Fahnbulleh took down to win his heat was Georgia standout sprinter Matthew Boling, who was leading for most of the contest but was chased down by the NCAA champion in the closing meters.
Jacory Patterson followed that up with a casual 20.20 out of the second heat to win the event and tie the top mark in the NCAA this season.
Patterson’s wind-legal 20.20 is seventh all-time in school history, a personal best and the second-best time in the world this year.
Ryan Willie, Kemuel Santana, Cameron Mahorn and Zac Sedaros all poured in personal bests in the ensuing heats of the 200 meters.
Record Run By Anna Hall In First 400m Hurdles Appearance!
After breaking the school record in the Heptathlon last week, Anna Hall decided it was time to break another school record. In her first-ever 400-meter hurdle race, Hall broke a six-year Florida school record in 55.35.
Her time sits No. 2 in the NCAA this year.
Vanessa Watson ran an outstanding race as well, setting a personal best and moving up to No. 3 in Florida history with a time of 56.25.
She now has the fifth-best time in the NCAA this season.
Florida honored its 2022 NCAA Indoor National Championship team on Friday night in front of the Gator faithful after giving them several memorable moments on the first day of action this weekend.
In total, there were 21 personal bests set on an outstanding opening day at the Pepsi Florida Relays.