CLEMSON, SC – Marlena Wesh advanced to the semifinals of the women’s 400-meter dash after finishing third in her heat on Friday, the opening day of track & field at the Olympic Games in London, England. Wesh, the nation’s only track & field athlete to represent Haiti, where she owns dual citizenship, clocked a time of 51.98 and placed third in her qualifying heat.
Wesh, a rising senior at Clemson, was strong out of the blocks and would have finished fourth, but one of the runners that finished ahead of her was disqualified. Still, she would have advanced to the semis on time because 51.98 was faster than any non-automatic qualifiers out of the heats. Wesh will compete again Saturday at 8:05 PM locally, 3:05 Eastern. Former Clemson great and two-time NCAA champion Patricia Mamona was the first athlete to miss qualifying for the final of the women’s triple jump. The top 12 advanced to the final, and Mamona finished 13th overall with a top mark of 14.11 meters, just centimeters behind the cutoff point for the final. Mamona, a native of Portugal, finished second at the European Championships this summer. George Kitchens, a 2005 senior and Clemson’s only member of Team USA, did not advance in the long jump. He fouled his first two attempts before registering a legal mark of 6.84 meters on his third jump. Kitchens finished third at the U.S. Olympic Trials in June to earn the trip to London. Another rising senior, Warren Fraser, will take to the track Saturday for the first time. He will compete in the 100 dash prelims at 10 AM locally, 5 AM Eastern.
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