Georgia track and field continued its strong start to the season at the South Carolina Invitational, getting first and second place in the heptathlon event. Senior Johannes Erm won the heptathlon, his fifth one collegiately, while redshirt sophomore Kyle Garland earned runner up.
Erm started the competition fiercely, landing in third place with a time of 7.17 seconds in the 60-meter event, with Garland following behind with a sixth-place finish and a time of 7.26.
They then moved onto the long jump, where Erm topped out at 23 feet, 11 inches while Garland hit a height of 20-8.5.
The duo shined in the shot put event, both setting personal records. Erm threw a distance of 48-0.5, while Garland threw a distance of 48-10.25.
They then moved on to the high jump, where Garland jumped a height of 6-10.25 and Erm reached a height of 6-3.25.
Erm ended the day with 3,197 points and Garland with 3,117 points, both being in first and second place.
“They both showed why they are future Olympians and how to methodically get our NCAA qualifiers,” said head coach Petros Kyprianou after the first day. “I’m proud of them and their demeanor, given how fearless competitors they both are while handling their bodies with care.”
Going into the second day, Erm and Garland started out on the 60-meter hurdle event. Erm clocked in at a time of 8.20 while Garland came in with a time of 8.29.
They went on to compete in the pole vault event, where Erm scored a height of 14-5.25 inches and Garland landed a height of 14-1.25.
In the last event, the 1000-meter, Erm ran in with a time of 2:40.62 with Garland earning a time of 2:50.39.
Erm ended the day and the event with a total of 5,727 points and Garland ended with 5,519 points. Erm’s score puts him at fourth overall in the country.
“The boys accomplished the goal of the weekend, which was to position them in a spot to qualify for the NCAA meet and stay healthy,” Kyprianou said. “It was an easy training hep for these two and they came out healthy and happy with the outcome. I thought we had some pretty good marks given that they were from a short approach or without as much ‘sharpness.’”
Next weekend, the Georgia track team will split up to compete in two different events: the USC Indoor Open on Feb. 13 in Columbia, South Carolina and the Music City Challenge on Feb. 12-13 in Nashville, Tennessee.