LA JOLLA, Calif. - The 2014 California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Championships continued all day Friday at Triton Track & Field Stadium on the campus of host UC San Diego, with the first 10 individual conference champions crowned. UCSD is the site of the three-day meet for the first time since 2010.
Seven Tritons made it onto the podium among those 10 finals, topped both literally and figuratively by senior Kellen Levy and sophomore Paige Hughes in a UCSD distance sweep of the 10000 meters, and redshirt freshman Dan Golubovic in the decathlon. A total of 26 UCSD student-athletes advanced into Saturday finals.
Both the Triton men and women sit in third through five events. The women have 37 points, with four-time defending champion Chico State in first (58) and Cal Poly Pomona one point ahead in second (38). The men have a wider margin to make up, at 36 points with 10-time defending champion Chico State at 64. Cal State Stanislaus is second (44).
Golubovic became the first Triton to win the CCAA decathlon in recent known history, totaling a stadium-record 6898 points in just his second collegiate decathlon. The score moved him up from No. 3 to No. 2 in program history, now behind only Matt Inskeep (7014 in 1993). It eclipsed former Chico State standout Talor Fulfer’s Triton Stadium mark of 6802 from 2010.
Golubovic began his morning with a lifetime-best 15.47 in the 110 hurdles, crossing in third. He then handily took the discus with a personal-record toss of 138’5”, the next closest competitor at 121’6”. Golubovic padded his lead a great deal by hitting a best-ever height of 16’0.75” in the pole vault. He was second in the javelin with a heave of 152’2”. Golubovic went to the front early in the 1500 and cruised, crossing fifth among six remaining competitors out of an original eight, timing 4:50.83 to put the finishing touches on his impressive victory in the meet’s most grueling event.
To conclude the second day, Hughes and Levy excelled in their own right in the longest race of the weekend. Hughes, a San Diego native and graduate of Valhalla High School in her first year in the program after a transfer from Cuyamaca College, made her CCAA Championships debut as the heavy favorite, and led from the get-go. She wound up with a time of 37:32.91, winning by more than 16 seconds in leading a 1-3 finish with fellow Triton sophomore Chandler Colquitt (37:50.81).
Then, in what was likely his final 10000 meters as a collegian, Levy successfully defended his 2013 title at the distance, surging late to time 31:12.33, a season best by over 41 seconds. Sophomore Scott Acton crossed the line in sixth (31:45.27).
The first individual champion of the 2014 meet was Cal Poly Pomona’s Erin Zwinger in the heptathlon. The junior timed 2:21.99 to cross first in the last of seven events over two days, the 800 meters, and secure her title with 4841 points. UCSD junior Veronica Bradley compiled a personal-record 4691 points for third behind San Francisco State freshman Ashley Black (4708), finding her way onto the podium. The total improved Bradley’s NCAA provisional qualifier. She rounded out the competition with a time of 2:25.91 in the 800, a lifetime best by over a second and almost 10 seconds faster than what she ran at the 2013 CCAA meet, when she was fourth. Freshman teammate Casey Buck was eighth (4182-PR) out of 10 entrants.
Fourth-year senior Eva Isaacs and sophomore Randy Copeman were the other Tritons to reach the podium Friday. Isaacs placed third in the discus with a top throw of 139’5”. CPP’s Samantha Swanson won the event (151’6”). Copeman was third in the long jump (23’3.5”) behind Chico State's J Patrick Smith (24’7.25”).
Junior Keith Rose ran a controlled race in the 100-meter dash and eased into the finals in second as the defending champion. Emmanuel Elijah sped a season-best 11.01, but was left out of Saturday’s race in 11th. Rose then also made the 200 final, again in second (21.74).
Junior Janay Pierce (San Diego/UC Davis/University City HS) sprinted a season-best 12.02 to finally notch her NCAA provisional qualifier in prelims of the 100, getting nodded out at the line in her heat by Chico State’s Kasey Barnett (11.91). She moved on to the finals in fourth, before qualifying for a second final in the 200 (25.26).
Aside from the two sprinters in Rose and Pierce, three other Tritons made a pair of Saturday finals in local freshman Lauren Lopez (Oceanside/Carlsbad HS), and juniors Jeffrey Lim and Laura Schellenberg. Lopez was third-fastest in her specialty, the 400 (56.93), and fourth in the 200 (25.01). Lim qualified in both the 110 (15.45) and 400 hurdles (56.97). Schellenberg will also run both hurdles Saturday, having timed 15.38 in the 100 and a lifetime-best 1:03.95 for fifth in the 400 on Friday.
Remaining finalists for UCSD included Poway product Sam Ozenbaugh (49.48-PR), Derek Van de Streek (49.71) and David Guinasso (50.07) in the 400. San Diego natives Jared Senese (1:54.96) and Carlos Bojorquez (1:54.97) coasted 1-2 in the first of two heats in the 800. Kevin Chiao (14.91-PR) and Adam Augustyn (15.16) joined Lim in the 110 hurdles. Freshman Markus Woods turned in a personal-best 53.72 to improve his provisional and earn a second race in the 400 hurdles. Riley Stauffer (57.65) will complement Woods and Lim in that event on Saturday.
For the women, junior All-American Sabrina Pimentel advanced with the fastest qualifying time in the 800 (2:13.48), ahead of teammates Lorato Anderson (season-best 2:15.86) and Ella Verhees (2:17.06). Jackie Chalmers (58.19) moved on in the 400, though fellow freshman Marisa Padilla barely fell short in 10th (58.47). Corinne Hinkle in the 1500 (4:45.95), Michelle Cummins in the 100 hurdles (14.73-PR), and senior All-American Lauren Irish in the 400 hurdles (1:02.35) were the others.
A noteworthy mark from a non-UCSD athlete came from Cal State Stanislaus junior Channing Wilson, who broke the 13-year-old meet record with a heave of 160’4” in winning the javelin. Former Warrior Shelley Brower had thrown 159’4” in 2001.
Stanislaus senior Josh Uikilifi did the double in the hammer throw (193’8”) and shot put (56’10.75”), repeating in the latter. Barnett topped the field in the long jump (20’0.25”) for Chico, with UCSD sophomore Kristin Sato in fourth with a lifetime-best mark of 18’7.25”.
The CCAA Championships conclude on Saturday with all events finals. The action begins at 11 a.m. with the women’s hammer. The first track event, the women’s 4x100 relay, is slated for a 1 p.m. start. The men’s 4x400 relay will round things out at approximately 5:15 p.m.
Junior All-American Nash Howe will defend his 2013 conference title in the men’s javelin at 3:30 p.m., with Sato doing the same in the triple jump at 12:30 p.m. Rose runs as the defending CCAA champion in the 100-meter dash at 3:10 p.m.