A single centimeter made all the difference for USC Track and Field two weekends ago in Nampa, Idaho.
Competing among the best in the nation, junior Alitta Boyd was USC’s sole representative at the NCAA Division-I Indoor Championships on March 9 and 10.
Before entering the meet, she had previously placed in long jump at Division I competitions such as the New Balance Collegiate Invitational and Texas A&M Invitational. Boyd jumped 6.18 meters, missing the cutoff for the finals by a centimeter.
She was moved out of position by the University of Central Florida’s Sonnisha Williams, who clinched the spot at finals with a 6.19 meter jump during flight two. The men’s team did not compete indoors, and the women’s team was unable to qualify in other events. Robbed of a last stab at victory, the USC Trojans did not walk away with any championship wins at the NCAA finals.
The indoor season might be over and done, but USC is still preparing for outdoors. Last weekend USC competed at the Northridge Invitational, but field conditions did not look favorable and USC pulled out for the majority of the meet.
“The conditions were terrible, and the weather didn’t hold up,” USC coach Ron Allice said. “Outside of the hammer competition on Friday the majority of the team did not compete.”
Though most of the Trojans track and field squad did not participate in last weekend’s meet, USC still managed to secure a win. Senior captain Marissa Minderler finished first in women’s javelin throw with a final distance of 40.98 meters. Minderler previously finished third at the Ben Brown Invitational at Long Beach State.
Bad weather conditions might have prevented the Trojans from competing at full strength during last weekend’s meet, but they continue to prepare for the upcoming Trojan Invitational, taking place at USC’s Loker Stadium. The Trojans will not only be defending their home turf but will also be proving themselves against stiff competition from top-25 teams for the first time in the outdoor season.
“This is the best track meet outside of the major conference meets,” Allice said of the Trojan Invitational. “Outside of those, there is no meet in the country that is bringing in the quality of teams that the Trojan Invitational does.” Opponents include Oregon, who won the NCAA Women’s Indoor Championship, as well as Texas A&M, who will be defending the men’s national title for the third year in a row.