Track and Field

Track and field sets new records

The UCSD track and field squads divided up the weekend, sending some athletes to the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational and others to the Mount San Antonio College Relays and Heptathlon at Azusa Pacific University. Juniors Jon Patton, Mimi Hodgins and Briana Hinga each set new school records in the 200-meter race, 1500-meter race and heptathlon, respectively. Andrew Mo On the mark: At the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational on April 15, Patton led the men’s team as he raced to two NCAA provisional times and set a UCSD record in the 200. Patton crossed the finish line at 21.84 seconds — .05 seconds faster than the previous school record — and met the NCAA provisional time. He also made the NCAA provisional cut in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 14.79. Junior teammate Carl Lostrom ran the 1500 event in a time of 3:50.96 and earned the NCAA provisional time. For the women, Hodgins, who ran a 4:29.95 in the 1500, broke the school record and also met the NCAA qualifying time. Hodgins regained the school record, which senior teammate Lindsay Stalker had broken two weeks ago. Stalker, in turn, met the NCAA qualifying cut in the 800 meters with her time of 2:11.23. Freshman Emily McGregor ran a 17:32.08 in the women’s 5000-meter competition and finished fourth out of 44 runners overall. Although she was competing in the event for the first time, McGregor met the NCAA provisional time and placed sixth in the nation for Division II schools for the event. “I thrive off of competition,” she said. When McGregor strode past a former high school rival, who currently runs with UC Irvine, she was exuberant. “It was redeeming just to show how much college training had helped me and my race,” she said. Sophomore teammate Elisa Holiday ran the 100-meter dash in 12.08 seconds and finished fifth of 55. At the Mt. San Antonio College Relays and Heptathlon on April 13, Hinga and junior Amy Beeman finished 12th and 15th, respectively, out of the 26 competitors. The heptathlon event, which includes the 100-meter hurdles, high jump, shotput, 200, long jump, javelin and 800, occurs only twice during the track and field season. Hinga finished the competition with 4380 points — a new school record. She competed solidly throughout the two-day competition, jumping 16 feet, six inches in the long jump, throwing for 124-6 in the javelin and running 2:39.04 in the 800. Despite her personal record, Hinga says the event was not everything she hoped for. “I was honestly frustrated because I didn’t finish very strong in the 800,” she said. “But I was pleased that it was a personal best for me.” Beeman set a personal record with her finish of 4023 points, the third-best finish in school history. Beeman finished the 800 in 2:32.34, while jumping 16-5 in the long jump and throwing for 102-6 in the javelin. Hinga and Beeman will concentrate on decreasing personal tension during the event, especially for the 800. “Amy and I both have the problem of tightening up instead of just relaxing and pushing through the pain,” Hinga said. “But you need to be mentally tough and just do it.” The Tritons track and field teams will next compete on April 22 and April 23 at the UCSD Triton Invitational. The first event on the opening day will commence at 4 p.m. while the remainder of the competition will begin at 10 a.m. on April 23. ...

Track and field topple records

The UCSD track and field teams have been busy with their own version of March Madness, competing in four meets in as many weeks. Both teams have dominated other schools, including San Diego State and USC. Individually, senior Kevin Beeman and junior Mimi Hodgins broke school records in the men’s high jump and the women’s 800-meter race, respectively, while junior Jon Patton tied the school record in the 200 dash. Andrew Mo Blazing: At the March 25 and March 26 Collegiate Open hosted by UCSD, both teams finished in first place. The men’s team, which was in eighth place at the end of the first of the two-day competition, rocketed ahead and finished first out of 18 teams. Beeman set the new school record in the high jump with a jump of six feet, 11 inches, which broke the old record of 6-10 and met the NCAA provisional mark in the event. “It was good to break the record at home,” Beeman said. “It was a nice relief because it’s something I’ve been close to all season.” Junior Mike Cunningham won the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 52.84. Junior Carl Lostrom finished first in the 1500 race with a time of 3:57.59 — just a little more than one second before the second-place finisher. The men’s 4×100 relay team, made up of Patton, juniors Matt Borzage, Peiman Lahsaei and CJ Lawrence, finished first, beating second-place Azusa Pacific by nearly 0.4 seconds. The men’s 135.5 point first-place finish led the team, to meet the high goals it had for itself. “We’ve been working really hard, and everybody seems much more mature and stronger,” Beeman said. “We’re ready to go.” The women’s team towered over its competition with a total of 222 points ahead of second-place Azusa Pacific with 107. Hodgins took first in both the 800 and 1500 races, while freshman teammate Dianne Dunn took second in the 800. Freshman Laiah Blue won the 400 hurdles and silvered in the 100 hurdles. Blue credits coach Darcy Ahner for her successes this season. “[Ahner] immediately saw the things that needed to be fixed, and that’s shown in my races,” Blue said. Freshman Whitney Johnson and sophomore Elisa Holiday finished one-two in the women’s long jump, posting 5.65 meters and 5.37 meters, respectively. The SDSU Aztec Invitational on March 21 was also a success for the Tritons. For the women, senior Kendra Canape tied for first place in the high jump with a mark of 5-7. The planned jump-off to determine first place between Canape and Aztec Nicole Carnier was canceled because of inclement weather. Holiday took second place in the long jump with a jump of 18-7 3/4 — the third-best jump in Triton history and only one-quarter of an inch off an NCAA provisional mark. For the men’s team, Lostrom won the steeplechase event with a time of 9:35.71. The San Diego Collegiate Track and Field Championships, held March 12 at UCSD, saw both teams emerge victorious. The men’s team won 15 of the 19 events and finished the meet with 270 points, overwhelming the competition — second-place Cal State San Marcos had 129 points. Patton tied the school record in the 200 dash with a time of 21.89 and finished first in the event, with Borzage coming in second at 22.19. Lawrence won the 100 dash in a time of 11.28, while Borzage won the 400 with his time of 49.00. Junior Chris Beetley-Hagler won the 5000 race with a time of 15:39.08. At 9:46.92, senior Eric Nilsen came in first place in the 3000 steeplechase — almost 20 seconds faster than the second-place competitor. The women’s team finished first out of six teams at the All-Cal Championships in Irvine, Calif., with 285 points.. It was at this meet that Hodgins shattered the school record in the 800 race with her time of 2:11.12 and bettered her already-earned NCAA provisional cut. Fellow competitor and senior Lindsay Stalker met the NCAA provisional mark in the race with her time of 2:14.20. Stalker also reached a NCAA provisional qualifying time in the 1500 with her second-place finish of 4:38.17. Blue finished second in the 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles, while senior Kaylin Siever finished third in the 100 hurdles. Both teams will compete again April 2 in a four-way meet with Azusa Pacific, Cal State San Marcos and host Point Loma Nazarene. ...

Track and field hosts 2004 Spring Break Challenge

The UCSD men’s and women’s track and field teams played host to the 2004 Spring Break Challenge at Triton Track and Field Stadium. They competed well, but faced off against such formidable foes as Cornell University, which had its Division I men’s and women’s teams defeat the rest of the field. The Cornell women scored 213 points to finish ahead of UCSD (172.5), Azusa Pacific (84) and Claremont (81), among the 12 teams total. In the 10-team men’s field, Cornell produced 200 points to come in ahead of UCSD (149), Claremont (90.5) and Azusa Pacific (75). Hernandez performed her usual solid work in shot put, with a throw of 42-06.75 that landed her in first place. Hernandez also took seventh in her other event, the hammer throw, making it to the 147-11 mark. Another thrower, Beebe, took first in the javelin throw with a distance of 133-02. Freshman Elisa Holiday took first in the long jump at 18-02.25, and captured the second-place position in the 100-meter race, running 12.12. Holiday also snagged a third-place finish in the 200-meter run, clocking a 25.10. Senior Liz Tsu placed fourth in the 400-meter race, finishing in 58.69, while sophomore teammate Sandy Schaefer was right on her heels, running 58.71 and taking fifth place. Seniors Clara Wilson and Hillary Mills ran close together in the 400-meter hurdles. Wilson finished fourth in 1:04.13, while Mills was fifth in 1.04.25. Teammates Meredith Perry and Kaylin Siever were in a close pack in the 100-meter hurdles. Perry, a junior, took third in 14.83, while Siever, a sophomore, finished right behind her in fourth at 15.08. Both women also performed well in other events. Perry took third in the pole vault, reaching a height of 10-11 while Siever placed first in the triple jump with a height of 39-03.25. Senior Katie Bunker ran the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 12:04.29 and took third place. The team of Holiday, Siever, Tsu and junior Aileen Sabio excelled in the 400 meter relay, taking fourth with a time of 48.41. The 1,600 meter relay took first place, and was comprised of Schaefer, Mills, Tsu and Wilson. The women finished in only 3:55.26. Junior Kelsey Turner was another Triton event winner, jumping 5-5 and taking first in the high jump. The Tritons performed well in the difficult long-distance races. Junior Lindsay Stalker ran the 800-meter race in 2:19.48, taking fourth. Sophomore Michelle DiMeo also took fourth in the 1,500-meter race, finishing in 4:46.36. Sophomore Erin O’Donnell performed well on the grueling 3,000-meter race, finishing in 18:34.50, good enough for fifth place. On the men’s side, freshman Matt Maybeno took sixth place in the 100-meter race, running 11.03, while his performance in the 200-meter race, finishing in 22.20, earned him an even stronger fifth place. Sophomore Matt Borzage took sixth in the 400-meter race, running 49.355. Borzage was also last week’s California Collegiate Athletic Association Male Track and Field Athlete of the Week. Sophomore Mike Cunningham won the 110 hurdles in a personal-best time of 14.73, which was good enough for No. 2 all-time in the Triton record book. Cunningham also was a member of the winning 1,600 relay team (3:18.10), along with Borzage, freshman J.C. Inauen and sophomore Matt Horner. Sophomore Jon Patton was first ahead of Cunningham in the 400 hurdles, racing a 53.43, and second behind him in the 100 hurdles, hitting the finish line in 15.12. His teammate, senior John Morrison, took fifth in the 800-meter race, finishing in 1:56.54. The long-distance races saw some outstanding UCSD performances. Sophomore Carl Lostrom placed second in the 1,500-meter race, finishing in 3:57.73. Josephat Keino of Alliant International University was a double-event winner in the 1,500 meters, racing in 3:52.91, and the 5,000, running the lengthy course in 14:50.39. Cornell athletes won five of the seven field events. The UCSD track and field teams will next compete at the prestigious California-Nevada State Championships on April 3 and April 4 in Fresno, Calif. The teams will host one final home meet at Triton Track and Field Stadium, the UC San Diego Triton Invitational, on April 23 and April 24. ...

Track and field starts regular season strong

The UCSD women’s track and field team performed impressively at the March 13 San Diego City Championships, emerging victorious over Division I rival San Diego State, and finishing first among six teams. The Triton men also posted a victory by leading in the final standings ahead of three opponents. “We had a huge day especially on the women’s side against SDSU,” head coach Tony Salerno said. The Triton women outscored the Aztecs 217 to 204 , with Cal State San Marcos (69), Point Loma Nazarene (60), Alliant International (9) and University of San Diego (7) also in the competition. UCSD had a number of individual highlights in the meet. Sophomore Kaylin Siever’s first-place showing of 39 feet, 8.75 inches in the triple jump was a school-record and an NCAA qualifying mark. Siever was also notable for finishing second in the long jump. Junior Meredith Perry ran 14.38 to garner a second-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles, fast enough to be an NCAA Division II qualifying standard. Freshman distance sensation Tina Firouz took first in the 3,000-meter race with sophomore teammate Michelle DiMeo running right behind her. Firouz and DiMeo finished in NCAA qualifying times of 10:12.94 and 10:14.98, respectively. Senior thrower Sagrario Hernandez did double duty, performing and winning both the shot put by 45’-2 1/2”, and the hammer throw, reaching a distance of 160’-6”. Senior Michelle Beebe excelled in the javelin, throwing 131’-7” and taking first. Other first-place finishers were freshman Torrey Trust, a discus specialist who threw 123’-7”, and junior high jumper Kelsey Turner, with a jump of 5’-5”. San Diego State still had a few standouts, despite its team’s weak overall showing at the meet. Tonette Dyer won both the 100 (11.61) and 200 (23.69), while teammate Nicole Ireland finished second in each event (11.89, 23.85). Heather Heron swept the hurdles events, taking both the 100 -meter (13.61) and 400-meter races (1:00.64). Dyer and Heron were also on the first-place 400 relay for the Aztecs, which finished with a time of 45.37. Jamillah Titus was a final double-event winner for SDSU, as she came in first in the 800 meters (2:15.93), and as a member of the 1600 relay. On the men’s side, UCSD, scoring high with 243.5 points, was able to decisively outdistance Point Loma Nazarene (132.5), Cal State San Marcos (89) and Alliant International (45). Triton athletes won 13 of the 19 events, including every field event except the discus. Sophomore Jon Patton took first in the 200-meter race, running 21.97, while fellow sophomore Matt Borzage was the winner of the 400-meter race with 49.57. Patton and Borzage were among the first-place UCSD runners competing with the 1,600 relay team, taking first with 42.23. Several hurdlers were event winners, including sophomore Mike Cunningham, who ran 15.11 in the 110-meter hurdles, while freshman JC Inauen won the 400 hurdles in 55.72. Senior Eric Nilsen was the 3,000-meter steeple winner, reaching the finish line first in 9:46.50. The jumping events also had a large number of high scorers that were able to help elevate UCSD above the other competitors. Senior Pat Ruttinger won the pole vault, first with a height of 14-10, while fellow senior Marcus Keller was the triple jump winner, rising above the competition at 46-2. Sophomore Tim Bailey was the long jump winner at 21’0.5”, and junior Kevin Beeman finished first in the high jump, reaching a height of 6’4.75”. Sophomores Ryan Osgood and Brad Libuit shined in the javelin and shot put events, respectively. Osgood’s javelin throw went 185-7 and Libuit’s shot put went 44-3 1/4; both performances were good enough for first place. Junior Hans Van Dale had a hammer throw of 169-7, which was another event-winning throw. Though UCSD’s rivals at the meet were playing with injuries, including SDSU, the Tritons came to the meet well-prepared and ready for the Division I competition; the sheer number of event winners clearly indicates UCSD’s versatility in the variety of track and field events. “They had a couple of injuries that gave us some scoring opportunities that we took advantage of, but mostly we had a great day,” Salerno said. Some other competitors were able to stand out, although UCSD athletes accounted for the majority of event winners for both the men’s and women’s teams. Josephat Keino was a double winner for Alliant International in the 800-meter (1:53.62) and the 1,500 (3:54.47). Terrance Hale from Point Loma Nazarene won the discus with a mark of 164-11, while the Sea Lions also earned top honors in the 1,600 relay at 3:20.44. The meet was an impressive victory for both the men and the women because of the caliber of competition offered by the opponents, especially San Diego State, a Division I school. “SDSU was California/Nevada State Champions last year as well as Mountain West Conference champs,” Salerno said. ...

Track and field take on Division I opponents

The UCSD track team displayed its strength in a striking, record-breaking performance at the annual All-Cal Challenge Cup track and field championships at UC Irvine. The team competed against UC Irvine, UCLA, UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara, with several individuals garnering NCAA Championship provisional qualifying marks. The UCSD women finished the competition second to UCSB, while the men’s side finished third, scoring 197 points and losing to UCI and UCSB. “Being the only non-scholarship team as well as the only Division II team among Division I schools made our success today even more significant,” head coach Tony Salerno said. The qualifying marks helped UCSD outperform and defeat many of the Division I opponents that competed at the event. “I am proud of how all of our people competed against some tough Division I level competition,” Salerno said. “I can’t say enough about our performance across the board.” The Triton women totaled 199 points, 54 points behind Division I rival UCSB and nine points ahead of UCI. UC Davis and UC Riverside were far behind; they finished fourth and fifth at 154 and 146 points, respectively. Sophomore Kaylin Siever of the triple jump event and senior Michelle Beebe, a javelin thrower, were event winners for the Tritons. Junior Meredith Perry set a UCSD school record in the pole vault at 11 feet, 9.75 inches to take second place. In addition, Perry’s performance earned her an NCAA Championship provisional qualifying mark. “Perry was the outstanding performer for the women today,” Salerno said. Outranking UCSD on the men’s side were UC Irvine and UCSB, who came in first and second with 269.5 and 225.5 points, respectively. UC Davis was fourth at 156 points, with UC Riverside a distant fifth with 99 points. Senior steeplechaser Julian Nahan’s performance of 9 minutes, 22.40 seconds was an NCAA Division II provisional qualifying performance along with sophomore Mike Cunningham’s 400 hurdle mark of 53.20. “Our athletes really took the program to a new level with their performances today,” Salerno said. In track and field competitions, event winners and those scored in multiple events are always considered the standouts in a scoring meet. “[Sophomore] Brad Libuit’s throw to win the javelin was a 16-foot personal record and came within a few inches of the school record,” Salerno said. The coaching staff made sure the team was well-prepared, but also well-rested to ensure maximized results from its intensive training. “We have been looking forward to this meet for quite a while, so we rested people in preparation for this one and made sure we deployed our people to score as effectively as possible,” Salerno said. Expectations are high given the exceptional level of competition UCSD offered to a slew of Division I sister-school rivals. While head coach Salerno predicts strong results, he also senses heightened competition from accomplished teams with diverse talents. “The men should have a fairly successful meet on March 13 [against San Diego State] … [but] the women have it a bit tougher,” Salerno said. Both the UCSD men’s and women’s teams will be back in action at the March 13 San Diego City Championships against a varied field of opponents, including Cal State San Marcos, Point Loma Nazarene and crosstown rival Division I San Diego State. “They are a very good Division I-caliber team, but our depth may keep us close against them,” Salerno said about the Aztecs. “Our women’s team was just a few points away from beating them last year and we are a much better program this year than last.” ...

Track and field breaks school records

The UCSD men’s and women’s track and field teams competed in the Feb. 28 Rossi Relays, held at Claremont College, posting several school records and earning a number of national qualifying performances. Jennifer Downs Guardian file Though it was a non-scoring meet, the Tritons trampled over their competitors with the help of several individual standouts, most of whom are veteran track stars that broke their own school records. In the men’s 400-meter hurdles was sophomore Jon Patton, whose first-place, 53.06-second performance was an NCAA provisional qualifying performance, a UCSD school record, Rossi Relays meet record and a stadium record. “Patton improved on his own school record, and his time was more than good enough for nationals,” head coach Tony Salerno said. In the 100-meters, Triton sophomore sprinter Peiman Lahsaei timed in at 11.02, capturing the fourth all-time best position for the Tritons. Senior Marcus Keller excelled in the triple jump, reaching a distance of 46 feet, 11.5 inches, good enough to take the third all-time best distance at UCSD. Freshman sprinter Matt Maybeno took the UCSD seventh all-time best position in the 100-meter race with a time of 11.07. The men’s 4×100 relay charged to a notably low combined time of 42.19, strong enough for the fourth-best all-time UCSD performance, while the 4×400 men’s relay finished with a time of 3:21.19, which slipped the team into place as the ninth-fastest in UCSD track history. On the women’s side, sophomore hurdler Kaylin Siever garnered several awards with her powerful efforts. Siever finished in first place in the women’s triple jump with a distance of 39-3 that was an NCAA provisional qualifying performance, a UCSD school record and a meet and stadium record. “The women’s team did particularly well, with a number of great performances,” Salerno said. Senior Michelle Beebe threw an excellent 146-11 in the women’s javelin to place her in first with an NCAA provisional qualifying performance and a UCSD school record. Women’s freshman long jumper Elisa Holiday reached a distance of 18-4, taking first place in the event and fourth-best all-time at UCSD. Skilled shot put and hammer throw specialist Sagrario Hernandez took second place in the women’s shot with a throw of 45-8 and placed fifth with an NCAA provisional qualifying performance in the women’s hammer, throwing 158-8 for another NCAA provisional qualifying performance. The UCSD women’s distance medley relay took second place with a time of 12:06, which is also a UCSD school record. A slew of top-rate Division I opponents, including the University of Southern California, raced at the Rossi Relays, but the Division II Tritons seemed to stand out over the opposition. The next meet will be the March 6 All-Cal Championship, in which the Tritons will take on several Division I schools, including UC Irvine, UCLA, UC Riverside and UCSB. UC Irvine will host the event. ...

Track and field qualifies seven Tritons

UCSD track and field will send seven athletes — two men and five women — to the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II Championships at the Angelo State University Multipurpose Sports Complex in San Angelo, Texas on May 23 to May 25. Guardian file photo Earlier this week, after announcing those teams officially selected to advance to nationals through automatic qualification, the selection committee pooled together all of the provisional qualifiers accumulated during the course of the season and picked the top marks in order to fill in all of the event fields. The announcement came soon after the Tritons won All-California Collegiate Athletic Association honors for 12 athletes at last week’s CCAA Conference Championships at UCSD, where the women placed second and the men placed fifth overall. “”Yes it was [along the lines of what we expected],”” said head coach Tony Salerno. “”Some were nice surprises. It was pretty much what we had expected; we actually got more women in than we expected but it’s been that kind of year for the women’s team.”” Leading the UCSD competitors is Rob Ewanio, whose school record of 60’4.5” in the men’s shot put at conference championships not only won him the conference title, but also earned him the second seed in this weekend’s nationals. Also, his win last week came over Taras Rohde of Cal State Los Angeles, the top seed because of the 61′.75” mark he posted earlier this season. Ewanio, who placed fifth at last year’s meet, earned UCSD’s only automatic bid to the national championships. Also representing the men is Jon Wong in the 1,500 meters, the 19th-seeded runner with a time of three minutes, 52.22 seconds. Last season Wong finished 13th during preliminaries in the 1,500 meters, just barely missing a berth in the finals field of 12. Wong had an NCAA provisional qualification mark in the 800 meters as well, but was not able to make the cut for nationals. On the women’s side, the highest-seeded qualifier is Audrey Sung in the 3,000 meters, a 2001 All-American in the same event. Sung’s time of 10:01.41 earned her a sixth seed in the race, where she took sixth place to score all three team points last year. In their other track event, the women will be represented by Clara Wilson in the 400-meter low hurdles, who will race as the 16th seed with a qualifying time of 62.52 seconds. In the field events, Sara Allsup has the seventh seed in the women’s discus, having posted a throw of 155’02’. Megan Bergin, with a 166’11” mark in the women’s hammer throw last weekend, will compete as the 14th seed. Bergin’s throw at the conference championships was both a school and personal record. Finally, Minnie Hernandez, whose 45’9” in the shot put at the CCAA Championships eventually became her NCAA qualification throw, was a pleasant surprise, according to Salerno. “”For some of them, the sky is the limit,”” Salerno said. “”For Audrey, she certainly has a good chance of doing real well in the 3,000. She’s quite a competitor. She’s got a real good chance of improving [on last season’s performance at nationals] this year. She and Rob are certainly our top athletes from each gender.”” Having completed their regular season last week with two new school records and a handful of top-10 all-time finishes, the Tritons will head back to the national championships looking to improve on last year’s 29th place on the men’s side, and 50th place standing on the women’s. “”The way we competed at conference championships, it makes you hungry for more,”” Salerno said. “”I think we’re ready to step up. With us, it’s a real sense of confidence and most athletes headed into nationals have fear and trepidation. I’m really excited and looking forward to seeing what happens.”” ...

Track and field qualifies four

UCSD track and field, despite competing amid over 2,000 Olympian, professional and top-level collegiate athletes, turned in several excellent performances at the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational at Claremont College on Friday. The meet, which works in conjunction with the concurrent Mt. San Antonio Relays at Mt. San Antonio College, featured several American and international Olympian, professional club and Division I collegiate athletes. Among the high-profile collegiate programs represented were Notre Dame, Stanford, Michigan, Oregon, UCLA and Wisconsin. “”It was pretty amazing,”” said head coach Tony Salerno. “”You wouldn’t think that with a little school like [Claremont], but it was in conjunction with the [Mt. SAC Relays], and that was huge. It was pretty much the whole nation and part of the world that was in the area for track and field.”” UCSD took about two-thirds of the complete team to the nonscoring meet, with an emphasis on the track events, according to Salerno. The coaching staff opted to rest several of the field athletes, including the Tritons’ three National Collegiate Athletic Association qualifiers in the throwing events: Rob Ewanio in the men’s shot put, Sara Allsup in the women’s discus, and Megan Bergin in the women’s hammer throw. Coupled with the competitive field, Salerno said the team still managed to post several outstanding individual performances, including four National Collegiate Athletic Association qualifying marks. “”I don’t know if too many of our kids are intimidated,”” Salerno said. “”Our kids are used to going to meets [like this]. In track and field, the nature of the sport [is that] you can see anybody there, from Division III athletes to Olympians. It’s really fortunate for us to have a meet like this and then go to national-level competitions, because we’re used to the high level of competition.”” Jon Wong improved on his NCAA qualification time with a 3:52.22 in the 1,500-meter run, the seventh best in the nation and the best mark in the California Collegiate Athletic Association this year. More impressively, it was in a field that included 2000 Olympian and three-time NCAA champion, Gabe Jennings of Stanford University, former NCAA champion Clyde Colenso of South Africa and meet record-holder Brandon Strong of Arizona State University. Audrey Sung, a 2001 All-American in the 3,000 meters, added another NCAA bid to her resume to go along with her qualifications in the 3,000 and 5,000. She posted a 4:40.89 in the 1,500-meter run for UCSD. Julian Nahan ran the fourth-best 3,000 meter steeplechase in UCSD history with a time of 9:22.33 — good enough to earn him a provisional qualification bid to the NCAA finals. The fourth bid came when Clara Wilson ran a qualifying performance in the 400-meter hurdles with a mark of 62.52, the best mark in the CCAA this year, eighth-best in the country and the third-fastest in school history. “”[Julian] had a key performance,”” Salerno said. “”It was a new event for him, but we think he’s found a home. [Wilson] had a huge breakthrough in the hurdles. She went from ‘OK, pretty good’ to top in the country, and that’s a big deal.”” Coming off its successful weekend at Pomona-Pitzer, the squad returns home for what Salerno calls one of the most elite competitions of the year: the UCSD Triton Invitational. The two-day event starts April 26 and will feature complete teams from University of Southern California and UCLA, UC Santa Barbara, Cal State Long Beach, SDSU and others. “”We really are [excited],”” Salerno said. “”The opportunity to have this sequence of meets where we’re home every other weekend at the end of the season is ideal. This invitational is going to be very competitive.”” Most notably, however, the meet will also include several high-profile competitors, including shot put world champion John Godina of the United States and defending NCAA Division I 100-meter champion Angela Williams of USC. “”It’ll be extremely stacked,”” Salerno said. “”The top 10 in both [discus and shot put] will be Olympic athletes from all over the world. Our discus field is world renowned — we have some of the top guys in the world. We have guys of that caliber, and then UCLA, who is the top throwing team in the country. But compared to the other guys, they’ll look like children, and that gives you some perspective about the level of world-class competition. This will be the top-level competition in the San Diego area this year, so it’ll be quite a show.”” ...

Shorthanded track and field struggles in meet

The UCSD track and field team, coming off a draining performance at last week’s California-Nevada Championships at Fresno State University, struggled a bit this weekend in a five-way meet at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. The Tritons were shorthanded because of injuries, especially on the men’s side, and the coaching staff opted to rest several athletes instead of having them compete in what was considered one of the lower-profile competitions of the year. According to head coach Tony Salerno, the team looked unimpressive. “”It was a fairly poor showing,”” Salerno said. “”We were a little flat, actually. This was one of our low-key meets — the problem was the other teams didn’t take it as low-key. They were pretty good this year.”” The women’s team, which has consistently put together solid showings this year, finished with 217 points, second to Claremont College’s 238. Rounding out the field was Point Loma, Cal State San Marcos and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics runner-up Azusa Pacific, and Cal State San Marcos. Concordia University also competed, but as a nonscoring team. UCSD was led by victories in three events: Audrey Sung in the 1,500 meter, Jackie Vu in the pole vault and Clara Wilson in the long jump. The school record books were again rewritten when Hillary Mills posted the seventh-best mark ever in the 400-meter hurdles. The 100-meter relay team of Liz Tsu, Cindy Wong, Aileen Sabio and Erin Newman finished with the ninth-best mark ever at UCSD. The men didn’t fare as well in the team standings, mustering a fourth-place finish with 196 points behind winner Claremont and defending NAIA champions Azusa Pacific and Point Loma. San Marcos and nonscoring Concordia followed UCSD. Rob Ewanio posted his customary high mark in the shot put at 57′ 3”, the second-best throw of his career and an improvement on his National Collegiate Athletic Association qualifying mark. Other men’s notables include Ryan Vincent’s victory in the high jump with a height of 6’2” and Eric Robin’s mark of 150’8” in the hammer throw, which was 10th-best in school history. “”We were prepared to take some losses in this one in preparation for next week at home against [UC Riverside], Cal Poly Pomona and San Marcos and the conference championships in May,”” Salerno said. “”Still, we generally did not perform well. Perhaps a little emotional letdown after the intensity of Cal-Nevada Championships last week.”” The squad failed to qualify any additional athletes for the NCAA Division II National Championships, but is still optimistic about having more athletes competing at nationals in late May. According to Salerno, Jon Wong has come close to qualifying for the 1,500 meters, which he qualified for last year and will hopefully do so again when he peaks. Salerno said pole vaulter Mark Gomez is also primed for an NCAA qualification. “”[Gomez] in the pole vault will be the next one,”” Salerno said. “”He’s done 15’6”, [fifth best in school history], but he can do 16′ 4”. We’re just waiting for everything to pull together, and he hasn’t done that yet.”” Despite a lackluster performance at Point Loma, the season has generally been a positive one. An indication of the team’s success so far is its ability to consistently post marks among the school’s top 10, a sign that is very encouraging to Salerno. “”It’s really pretty exciting because overall we’re pretty young,”” Salerno said. “”Most of the people jumping in the top 10 were freshmen and sophomores. We’re still in transition [from Division III], but everyone on the team is a player. Another year or two and we’re going to see a real big shift. We’ll see the team jump up as we get older.”” This Saturday’s UCSD Collegiate Invitational marks a homecoming for the Tritons, who have been competing exclusively on the road for two months. The team, still regrouping from injuries, hopes to compete well, but more importantly, stay healthy heading into the final stretch of the season. “”UC Riverside, a Division I school, is dramatically improved, [and so are] Cal Poly Pomona and San Marcos,”” Salerno said. “”It’s a meet we will pursue a little more aggressively, but the challenge is to make sure you [don’t] get injured, especially for the conference meet.”” ...

Track and field goes to Nevada for event

UCSD track and field resumed action at the two-day California-Nevada Championships this weekend. The Tritons also attended the Aztec Track and Field Classic on March 23 following a two-week break from competition. Guardian file photo The annual Cal-Nevada Championships, hosted this year at Fresno State University’s Warmerdam Field, featured some of the top teams in California and Nevada, including Division I powerhouses UCLA, San Diego State University, Fresno State and Cal State Northridge. The Triton women gave a solid effort, finishing 15th out of over 25 schools in the team standings with 10 points, but at a distance behind team-winner Cal State Northridge, which finished with 129.50. Audrey Sung’s first-place 3,000-meter-run mark of 10:06.27 met the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II Championships qualifying time in the event. Kathy Read followed in at 12th with a time of 10:27.94 and Lindsey Stalker took 16th with a mark of 10:40.74. In the field, Megan Bergin took 12th in the women’s hammer throw with a mark of 165’02”. The men did not fare as well, finishing 22nd with four points out of over 25 squads. The top showing on the day for the Tritons was Rob Ewanio’s sixth-place finish in the shot put with a distance of 57’02.75. Ewanio, who has already qualified for nationals in the shot put, would have qualified again with that mark. Julian Nahan and Steve Martin finished 10th and 16th, respectively, in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, and rounding out the top performances was Jon Wong’s 11th-place finish in the 1500-meter run. At the Aztec Track and Field Classic at San Diego State, a nonscoring meet that featured several professional clubs, the Triton track and field athletes had another successful outing despite combating cold, gusty weather. Bergin qualified for the NCAAs in the women’s hammer throw and four UCSD athletes posted all-time top 10 school marks. Bergin, who posted a 154’2″” mark, bested the 150′ mark necessary for a preliminary qualification in San Angelo, Texas at the end of May. Mary Peate’s 12:32.73 in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase was the third fastest time in UCSD history — good enough for fourth place on the day. In the women’s javelin, Lisa Caldwell earned the sixth-best mark in school history with her throw of 117’6″”. Stalker ran a 4:45.33 in the women’s 1500 meters, finishing fifth on the day and sixth in the UCSD record books. Alison McGrane completed the record book with the 10th-best time in school history: a 2:19.78 in the 800-meter run. The men’s competition featured strong outings by the Triton runners. In the 800 meters, the Tritons had a deep field competing, with Wong finishing third, Steve Smith finishing sixth, John Morrison finishing eighth and Brian Parisi finishing 16th. UCSD dominated the results in the 3,000 meters as well, with Nahan finishing fourth, Martin finishing sixth, Neil Kalla finishing seventh, Erick Wackenstedt finishing eighth, Luke Sigmon finishing 11th and Lota Reichert taking 15th. Ewanio turned in the most successful individual performance of the day for the men in the field, taking second in the shot put. Strong marks were also turned in by Jeff Conkey in the 400 meters, Ryan Vincent in the high jump and Marcus Keller in the triple jump. This weekend the Tritons head to Point Loma Nazarene University to take on the Crusaders, Azuza Pacific and Claremont College in a four-team meet before coming home for their first intercollegiate home meet next weekend, the UC San Diego Intercollegiate Invitational on April 13th. ...