The Trojans find success at the Texas A&M Indoor Invitational

On Saturday, USC’s men’s and women’s track and field teams traveled to College Station, Texas to compete in the Texas A&M Indoor Invitational. The single-day event, which took place in Gilliam Indoor Stadium, saw the A&M Aggies host seven other teams: Alabama, Baylor, Houston, Missouri, Rice, Texas Christian University and the University of Texas El Paso.

Up and over · Sophomore Viktor Fajoyomi finished second in the long jump and the high jump at the Texas A&M Indoor Invitational, contributing to the Trojan men’s ninth-place finish. - Photo courtesy of USC Sports Information

The men’s team arrived to compete ranked outside the top-25 by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association for the third week of the indoor season. The Women of Troy came into the meet with a ranking of 68.

All schools came to the College Station following A&M’s New Balance Collegiate Invitational performance, in which the Aggie men placed first (10 points ahead of rival Lousiana State University) and the Aggie women placed fourth.

The individual titles the Aggies earned at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational would carry over to the Indoor Invitational. Texas A&M men’s and women’s teams finished first in points — the men by a margin of 106 points, and the women by a margin of 57.5. The USC men’s team finished ninth with 22 points, and the USC women’s team finished eighth with 43 points.

The USC men’s team placed in three individual events at the meet. Sophomore Viktor Fajoyomi finished second in two events: long jump (7.26 m) and high jump (2.04 m). Freshman Allen Williams finished third in the men’s 60 m hurdles.

The women placed in two individual events and one relay event. Freshman Melia Cox finished second in the triple jump with a leap of 40-2 (12.24 m). Junior Alitta Boyd finished third in the long jump (5.99 m).

The women’s 4×400 m relay team (freshman Akawkaw Ndipagbor, senior Dalilah Muhammad, freshman Vanessa Jones and senior Aareon Payne) placed second (3:38.47). Sophomore Jessica Davis finished fourth in the women’s 60 m dash finals.

Payne and Ndipagbor went on to finish fifth and seventh, respectively, in the women’s 200 m dash finals. Muhammad also finished sixth in the Women’s 60 m Hurdles, with sophomore Lauren Blackburn finishing seventh. Senior Anniya Louis placed seventh in the women’s 800.

USC’s track and field teams placed in more events than its previous meet, the New Balance Collegiate Invitiational in New York. The Texas A&M Invitational is the final indoor meet before the conference championships are held.

Texas A&M rose above the competition at Gilliam Stadium with the Aggies recording 15 total wins at the meet. Missouri finished second in the men’s standings with 95 points; Baylor finished third with 82. Baylor also finished second in the women’s standings with 118 points while Missouri finished third with 77 points. The track and field team’s next scheduled event is Feb. 25 at the Claremont Relays in Claremont, Calif.