PUEBLO, CO (May 27, 2023) – Claflin University freshman Jaevon Riley gave a great effort at the 2023 NCAA Division II Men’s Outdoor Track & Field National Championship Meet, Thursday evening. After heading into the meet as the 20th seeded runner in the men’s 400m hurdles, he finished 17th in the opening round of the event with a 53.89.
“I knew it would be a challenging meet for him [Jaevon], definitely a learning experience,” said Claflin track & field head coach Garon Jackson. “His finish wasn’t there and running in altitude played a major part.”
With the finish, Riley’s season is completed as only the top nine finishers will advance to the event finals on Saturday evening. The finish should not overshadow a terrific season for Riley. In addition to qualifying for the 2023 NCAA Division II Men’s Outdoor Track & Field National Championship Meet, he was also a member of the third-place team in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Men’s Championship Meet and the 2023 CIAA Men’s Indoor Track & Field Championship team. He also placed second in the men’s 400m dash at the 2023 CIAA Men’s Outdoor Track & Field Championship, and he was second in the men’s 400m hurdles at the meet as well.
Competing against the best student-athletes in the nation and in a different atmosphere was always going to be a challenge for the Panther freshman. “I told him that this is the champion’s mentality. As long as you have a championship mentality in place, win or lose, you always be in a position to win,” Jackson added. “Just keep that championship mentality and remember this moment and be motivated.”
For more information on Panthers’ track & field, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletics Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to www.athletics.claflin.edu.