HOBBS, N.M. — The South Plains College men's and women's track and field teams each placed third on Saturday at the NJCAA Outdoor Track and Field National Championships at the Ross Black Field of Champions on the campus of New Mexico Junior College.
The Texans capped the meet with 80. 5 points, with Cloud County (88), and Barton County (83) taking first and second. The Lady Texans tied for third with Iowa Central, each totaling 83 points, with New Mexico Junior College (105.75), and Barton County (97) taking the top two spots.
"Both of these teams competed, and we asked a lot of several individuals to come out and do a lot of things," South Plains head coach Erik Vance said. "They didn't question anything we asked them to do, and went out and gave everything they had. When we started the season, we thought we had built a team on both sides that could win, and unfortunately the team we built on the men's side to win this thing is not the team we got here with. But, the two groups that got here are two of the hardest working, most competitive teams we've ever had, and I'm extremely proud of how they competed today."
Ruth Usoro kicked off the final day with a second place finish in the women's triple jump, turning in a final mark of 42' 9.75" for the Lady Texans. The Texans' Isaiah Griffith would follow up with a first place finish in the men's triple jump, earning the title of national champion with a jump of 54' 8.75". In the men's 4x100, the Texans' relay team comprised of Brandon Letts, AJ Pemberton, Adrese Atkins, and Willari Watson placed third in a time of 40.85.
The Lady Texans place two in the top 10 in the women's 1500 meters as Dorcus Ewoi placed second in 4:51.15, while Gladys Jemaiyo took ninth in a time of 4:57.19. In the men's 110 hurdles, freshman Denvaughn Whymns placed second with a time of 13.59, while Deion Lightfoot took sixth with a time of 14.04. Usoro would follow up later in the day with a fourth place finish in the women's 100-meter finals, turning in a time of 11.60.
South Plains placed two runners in the top six of the women's 800 meters as Itzel Garcia-Santos placed fifth with a time of 2:16.75, while Dorcus Ewoi placed sixth in a time of 2:17.15. In the men's 800 meters, freshman Japhet Toroitich placed seventh for the Texans with a time of 1:56.30. The Lady Texans crowned a national champion in the women's 400 hurdles as sophomore Janiel Moore ran away from the field, clocking a 1:00.65 for the top spot.
Freshman Moitalel Mpoke turned in a third place finish in the men's 400 hurdles for the Texans, running a 51.12. Usoro capped her final race for the Lady Texans in the women's 200 meters, posting a time of 23.40 to take fourth. The Texans concluded the meet with a fourth place finish in the men's 4x400 relay, turning in a final time of 3:13.80