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Weekend Recap: Florida Freshmen Shine, Quanera Hayes Breaks 300m Record

Weekend Recap: Florida Freshmen Shine, Quanera Hayes Breaks 300m Record
Photo: @GatorTF
From Edinburgh, Scotland, to Clemson, South Carolina, athletes threw down impressive 2017 racing debuts. Catch up on the biggest performances of the first weekend of the new year.

Grant Holloway stole the show in his college debut

In his first collegiate indoor meet of his career, Grant Holloway catapulted onto the all-time lists. The Florida freshman opened the Orange & Purple Classic in Clemson, SC, on Saturday with a time of 7.75 seconds in the 60m hurdles preliminary round. The mark would have ranked him No. 4 on Florida's all-time top 10 list. In the final, Holloway blasted a 7.63 winning time, which according to FloridaGators.com, is the fastest pre-NCAA indoor championship time run by a freshman since at least 2002. It is also the No. 2-ranked mark on Florida's all-time list. Holloway continued the meet with a victory in the 300m sprint. He won the event in 32.80, which is the second-fastest time by any man in history prior to turning 20, according to AllTime-Athletics. Olympic gold medalist LaShawn Merritt is the only man in history to run faster before turning 20 years old. It is also the No. 3 time in collegiate history.

Clayton Brown debuted with an all-time clearance

High jumper Clayton Brown also made an impressive debut with a clearance of 2.25m, which puts him No. 5 on the Florida all-time list. The performance would have been ranked No. 3 in the NCAA last year.

Tatiana Gusin opened with a top NCAA mark

The Georgia senior opened her final season for the Bulldogs with a high jump clearance of 1.90m at the Orange & Purple Classic. The performance would have been ranked No. 2 in the NCAA in 2016. The victory is currently a world-leading mark and a personal best. Gusin's clearance puts her in a tie with three-time Olympian and former Bulldog Levern Spencer for the No. 2 spot on the Georgia all-time list.

Kate Hall made an immediate impact as a Georgia Bulldog

Another Georgia Bulldog asserted herself as a contender when Kate Hall cleared 6.48m in the long jump at the Orange & Purple Classic. Hall's performance was just 0.03m behind Olympic finalist and meet winner Keturah Orji. After earning All-American honors at Iowa State, Hall transferred to Georgia and is already making an impact. 

Kate Murphy landed on the all-time list

The Lake Braddock senior owned the track at Saturday's Ocean Breeze Freedom Games in Staten Island, New York, when she blasted a 9:14.12 3K victory. The performance was a solo win and landed her the position of No. 3 indoor performer in prep history behind Mary Cain (9:04.51) and Alexa Efraimson (9:00.16 on an oversized track). Saturday's race was Murphy's 2017 indoor debut and the longest indoor race she's competed in since her sophomore year of high school. 


DJ Principe owned the Dartmouth Relays with DMR, 1K, 4x800m triple

The La Salle senior dominated the track at the Dartmouth Relays, beginning with the distance medley relay. Principe anchored his team to victory with a 4:16 solo 1600m. The following day, Principe won the 1K in a meet record of 2:27.86. He also anchored his team to another win in the 4x800m relay where he split a blazing-fast 1:53. 


Sammy Watson opened with fast triple at Dartmouth Relays

Rush Henrietta Sperry's speedy middle distance athlete opened her 2017 with victories in the mile, 400m, and DMR. Watson claimed the meet record in the 400m with a 55.76 victory. She won the mile in 4:59 and ran an 800m leg with a 2:09 split for her winning team in the distance medley relay. In her post-race interview, Watson shared that she narrowed down her top college choices to USC and Texas A&M.


Quanera Hayes, Candace Hill threw down 300m records

At the Orange & Purple Classic, Quanera Hayes and Candace Hill dominated the 300m. Hayes, a USATF indoor champion in the 400m, broke Natasha Hastings' American record with a mark of 35.71. In the same race, 18-year-old Candace Hill ran 36.86, which beats the standing high school record for the event. 

Mondo Duplantis broke all-conditions high school pole vault record

In his first competition since earning bronze at the IAAF World U20 Championships, Mondo Duplantis cleared 5.61m in his final attempt at the LSU High School Indoor Classic on Saturday. The performance stands as an indoor and outdoor high school record. 

Lenny Korir won thrilling Great Edinburgh race

Leonard Korir, a 2016 Olympian, threw down a wild kick to the finish to beat Great Britain's Callum Hawkins at the Great Edinburgh Cross Country 8K race on Saturday. Korir stole the show in the final meters of the race with a winning time of 24:03. The U.S. men claimed the overall team battle with Sam Chelanga (fourth), Stanley Kebenei (fifth), Garrett Heath (sixth), Hillary Bor (10th), Thomas Curtin (11th), and Martin Hehir (13th) rounding out a solid performance.

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