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Monday, January 30, 2023
<p>Marquis Dendy competes in the triple jump during the 2015 NCAA Indoor Championships on March 14 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.</p>

Marquis Dendy competes in the triple jump during the 2015 NCAA Indoor Championships on March 14 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Florida track and field has made its mark in recent years in the triple jump circuit.

This past weekend was no different.

At the USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon, the Gators were represented in each of the top three spots in the men’s triple jump.

Although the competition changed from the best collegiate athletes to the best American athletes in the span of a little less than two weeks, jumper Marquis Dendy had no problem finding success at the event.

At the same venue where he became Florida’s all-time triple jump leader at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, Dendy finished in third place with a 17.23-meter jump.

The result trailed only that of former Gators Omar Craddock (17.53m) and Will Claye (17.48).

But Dendy’s highlight of the weekend took place on the takeoff board of another event — the long jump.

Dendy, now a sponsored Nike athlete, won the event with the longest all-conditions jump of both his career and in the world at 8.68 meters — one quarter-of-a-meter better than his national outdoor title-clinching performance he put on at the NCAA outdoors earlier this month.

The victory also earned Dendy the right to represent the United States in the event at August’s World Championships, taking place in Beijing, China.

Fifteen Gators from this year’s men’s and women’s squad competed this weekend, and — aside from Dendy — the athlete that made the most noise was rising-freshman jumper KeAndre Bates.

Bates rose to the occasion in the men’s long jump junior finals, clinching a victory with a wind-aided 7.91-meter leap — giving Florida the men’s long jump sweep for the weekend.

Bates ended his weekend with a fifth-place finish in the men’s triple jump.

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Florida’s 15 athletes combined for nine top-five finishes over the course of the meet. Rising-freshman Lloydricia Cameron placed runner-up in the women’s discus junior finals with a 52.01-meter throw, giving herself a personal best as well as landing her a spot on the top-10 all-time list at UF.

The Gators excelled in both the men’s and women’s 200-meter senior events in Eugene, led by Dedric Dukes and Kyra Jefferson.

Each emerged from a field of at least 25 athletes en route to top-six finishes in the final race.

Dukes finished fifth with a 20.15-second time, while Jefferson finished sixth-overall and third among college athletes with a time of 22.56 seconds.

Follow Kyle Brutman on Twitter @KBrut13.

Marquis Dendy competes in the triple jump during the 2015 NCAA Indoor Championships on March 14 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

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