UC San Diego has one final meet ahead of the 2014 NCAA Division II Championships this Saturday, May 10, in Los Angeles. Select members of the Tritons' track and field teams will be traveling to the Oxy Invite, a last-chance qualifying meet for the national championships. The action starts at 11 a.m. with the men's shot put and the women's discus, pole vault and long jump. Running events begin with the women's 100 hurdles at 2:30 p.m.
Triton entrants include: Carlos Bojorquez (1500), Janay Pierce (100), Keith Rose (100, 200), Jared Senese (800), Lauren Irish (400 hurdles), Markus Woods (400 hurdles), the women's 4x400 relay of Sabrina Pimentel, Irish, Jackie Chalmers and Lauren Lopez, Anneke Kakebeen (steeple), Mario Flores (steeple), Chrissi Carr (pole vault), Megan Benham (pole vault), Clint Rosser (pole vault), Kristin Sato (triple jump), Chantia Justice (triple jump), Haley Libuit (javelin), Anthony Capitulo (javelin) and Veronica Bradley (high jump).
The meet will take place at two locations on the Occidental campus. Running and jumping events will be staged on Bill Henry Track, while the javelin will take place on the upper campus, located approximately half a mile from the track stadium.
LAST TIME OUT
UCSD hosted the CCAA Championships at Triton Track & Field Stadium to conclude a schedule packed with five home meets. Both the UCSD men and women took second, finishing with 177.5 points and 187.33 points, respectively, as runner-ups to Chico State. This marks the fifth consecutive year that the women have finished second, while the men move up one notch from last year's third-place finish. Five UCSD standouts took home first place, starting with redshirt-freshman Dan Golubovic who set a stadium record in the decathalon with 6898 points. Junior All-American Nash Howe and senior Kellen Levy defended their 2013 titles. Howe threw an impressive 225'4" in the javelin, while Levy ran a time of 31:12.33 in the 10000. Rounding out the top place finishes were junior All-American Sabrina Pimentel in the 800 (2:10.95) and sophomore Paige Hughes in the 10000 (37:31.91). Other notable performances include junior Keith Rose, who took second in both the 100 (10.72) and the 200 (21.30), breaking his own UCSD standard in the latter, again. UCSD took home CCAA Female Freshman of the Year honors again, as Lauren Lopez earned the award after taking third in the 400 (56.05), and running the last leg of the second place 4x400 relay team (4:47.08).
RECENT CCAA HISTORY
UCSD achieved another second-place finish at the CCAA Championships on the women's side in 2014 at Triton Track & Field Stadium. This marks the women's fifth consecutive second-place finish, all behind Chico State. The Triton men moved up the standings, finishing second behind Chico State as well, now the 11-time defending league champion. This is the second time that the UCSD track and field teams have both placed second behind Chico State when the CCAA Championships have been in La Jolla, coming four years apart in 2010 and 2014.
FIVE MORE CONFERENCE CHAMPIONS
This past weekend marked the return of four returning CCAA champions from 2013. Nash Howe (javelin), Kellen Levy (10000), Keith Rose (100) and Kristin Sato (triple jump) looked to defend their titles in their respective events. Howe and Levy were successful in their bids, finishing first in the javelin (225'4) and 10000 meters (31:12.33), respectively. Junior All-American Sabrina Pimentel returned to first place on the podium since her freshman year, winning the 800 (2:10.95) for the first time. New to the top of the CCAA podium were sophomore Paige Hughes with a time of 37:32.91 in the 10000 meters, and redshirt freshman Dan Golubovic, who set a Triton Track & Field Stadium record with 6898 points.
CCAA FRESHMEN OF THE YEAR
Lauren Lopez earned the women's CCAA Freshman of the Year award, making this the second straight year that the Tritons have taken home the honor on the women's side. Lopez had impressive performances throughout the CCAA Championships, finishing third in the 400, and running the last leg of the second place 4x400 relay squad. Lopez also finished seventh in the 200. This comes one year after UCSD swept the men's and women's honor, with field standouts Sean Cook and Kristin Sato earning the distinctions.
Twenty-three Triton track and field student-athletes have hit NCAA qualifying marks this season. On the men's side, junior All-American Nash Howe has earned the only automatic qualifer for the Tritons, throwing a distance of 229'3" in the javelin. Howe was the lone automatic qualifier last year as well. Carlos Bojorquez is the only Triton to have earned two provisional marks, running 1:51.10 in the 800, and a personal record of 3:50.16 in the 1500. Other provisional qualifying men are Anthony Capitulo (javelin/201'2"), Mario Flores (3000 steeple/9:23.16 PR), Clint Rosser (pole vault/15'11"), Jared Senese (800/1:51.62), Scott Acton (10000/30:51.86 PR), Tanner Collins (5000/14:27.19 PR) and Tareq Alwafai (5000/14:31.88 PR). Freshman Markus Woods achieved his pro mark in the 400 hurdles (53.27). The most recent Tritons to earn their pro marks are redshirt freshman Dan Golubovic (decathalon/6898) and junior Keith Rose (200/21.30 SR).
Closest to booking a trip to Michigan among the provisionals is junior All-American Sabrina Pimentel, who has run a school-record 2:09.07 in the 800, just .07 seconds shy of guaranteeing her a third straight NCAA appearance. Also setting a school record is junior Anneke Kakebeen, running a time of 11:14.13 in the 3000 steeple. Other Triton women with pro marks are All-American Lauren Irish (400 hurdles/1:01.66 PR), Chantia Justice (triple jump/39'1"), Haley Libuit (javelin/135'11" PR), Chrissi Carr (pole vault/11'11.75") and Kristin Sato (triple jump 39'3"). Two 4x400 relay foursomes have earned pro marks, with Pimentel, Marisa Padilla, Lauren Lopez and Irish earning a time of 3:48.50, while a different combination of Pimentel, Jackie Chalmers, Irish, and Lopez ran a mark of 3:47.08. Junior Janay Pierce rounds out the women's side for NCAA provisional qualifiers, running 12.02 in the 100.
TRITON INVITATIONAL INVITES STANDOUT PERFORMANCES
Triton Track & Field Stadium played host to over 1,000 competitors this past Saturday at the annual Triton Invitational, with UCSD athletes having their fair share of impressive performances. Sophomore Kristin Sato bettered her NCAA provisional qualifying mark by winning the triple jump with a leap of 39'3". Also earning a provisional mark were freshman Markus Woods in the 400 hurdles (53.88) and the relay foursome of Sabrina Pimentel, Marisa Padilla, Lauren Lopez and Lauren Irish in the 4x400 with a mark of 3:48.50. Former UCSD star and 2012 Olympian (representing Sri Lanka) Sonali Merrill handily won the 400 hurdles (59.76), while Olympic decathlon gold medalist Ashton Eaton won the same event on the men's side with a time of 50.01.
ROSE SHATTERS OWN RECORD (AGAIN)
The Tritons' squad split up between three meets April 16-19. Highlighting the activity was junior Keith Rose, who shattered his own 200-meter record of 21.57 by sprinting 21.51 at the Soka Peace Invitational in Aliso Viejo on April 19. Rose's time is only .06 seconds shy of an NCAA provisional qualifier. The Tritons also added six more athletes to their list of NCAA provisional qualifiers. Veronica Bradley (heptathlon) and Dan Golubovic (decathlon) earned personal bests and pro marks at the California Invitational in Azusa with 4618 points and 6720 points, respectively. Meanwhile, distance runners were sent to the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, where Carlos Bojorquez (1500/3:50.16), Scott Acton (10000/30:51.86), Tanner Collins (5000/14:27.19) and Tareq Alwafai (5000/14:31.88) all earned personal bests and NCAA provisional marks. Bojorquez now ranks No. 2 on UCSD's all-time list, behind Jon Wong's 3:50.03 from 2001. Acton moved up to No. 4, while Collins and Alwafai moved to No. 3 and No. 4, respectively, for their events.
PIMENTEL BREAKS SCHOOL RECORD
UCSD sent a dozen student-athletes to Tempe, Ariz., for the Sun Angel Classic hosted by Arizona State on April 12. Top billing there went to junior Sabrina Pimentel, who broke Lindsay Stalker's school record from 2005 (2:10.33) in the 800 meters by over a second in 2:09.07, finishing fifth among a Division I field. In the men's 800, UCSD went 1-3 with junior Carlos Bojorquez (1:51.10) and freshman Jared Senese (1:52.33). Bojorquez's time earned him a second NCAA provisional qualifier to go along with the one he already had in the 1500. Meanwhile, the bulk of the Triton squad competed at the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational. Sophomore Chrissi Carr improved her personal best in the pole vault by a foot, finishing second at a height of 11'11.75", No. 6 all-time at UCSD, and earning her an NCAA provisional qualifying mark.
TRITONS MOVE UP AT THE CAL-NEVADA CHAMPIONSHIPS
The UCSD men moved up five places from last year to finish a best-ever second at the 2014 Cal-Nevada Championships at home in La Jolla on April 5, while the women stepped up three slots from 2013 to claim seventh. Catalysts for the men were sophomore Carlos Bojorquez, who made a bold move on the final backstretch and held on to win the 1500 (3:55.18), and runner-up finishers Jared Senese (800/1:51.62), Keith Rose (100/10.71) and Nash Howe (javelin/214'8"). UCSD wound up 75.5 points behind team champion Long Beach State, but up the ladder from 2013 winner Sacramento State and system rivals UC Santa Barbara and UC Irvine. The Triton women chalked up 49 points, just 35 out of third and also had an individual winner, sophomore Paige Hughes, who ran away from the 10000 field in 37:04.59. Other notables were junior Sabrina Pimentel (2nd/800/2:12.73) and junior Anneke Kakebeen, who broke her own school mark in the 3000 steeplechase (11:14.13). San Diego State won the women’s crown for the fourth consecutive year.
AZTEC INVITATIONAL AFTERMATH
UCSD prepped for the Cal-Nevada Championships by running, jumping and throwing at the 36th Annual Aztec Invitational, March 28-29, across town at San Diego State. Sabrina Pimentel (3rd/800/2:13.16), Nash Howe (6th/javelin/228'5"), Haley Libuit (6th/javelin/135'11") and Clint Rosser (2nd/pole vault/15'9.75") hit NCAA provisional qualifying marks at the event. Among the other highlights was a fourth-place finish by Janay Pierce in the 100 (12.12), with the junior also anchoring a 4x100 relay that included Amy Heins, Erica Anunwah and Kristin Sato, to a third-place finish in 47.76.
WOMEN FIRST FOR SECOND STRAIGHT WEEK
Prior to taking a break for finals, the UCSD women's track and field team took first place at the San Diego Collegiate Challenge. It was the second weekend in a row that UCSD's women won a meet. The women finished with 216.5 points, allowing them to finish ahead of crosstown foes San Diego State (205), as well as six other competing schools. The men's team also had an impressive showing, finishing second among five squads with a total of 201 points, right behind first-place Navy (213).
TRITON WOMEN WINNERS AS FIRST-TIME ALL-CAL HOSTS
In Triton Track & Field Stadium's first turn as host of the All-Cal Championships after previously being held in Irvine, the UCSD women (221 points) earned their first title over Division I fellow UC system schools UC Santa Barbara (189), UC Irvine (122) and UC Riverside (76) since back-to-back successes in 2008 and 2009. The Triton men (179) placed second behind UCSB (214). UCSD women won six of the 19 events, with the men adding five first-place efforts. In his 2014 debut, Nash Howe earned the lone automatic NCAA qualifier among Triton competitors, already booking his trip to Michigan in May with a first-place javelin toss of 218'10". Sophomore Haley Libuit won the javelin on the women's side with her first career provisional mark of a personal-best 135'2". Carlos Bojorquez (1500), Mario Flores (3000 steeple) and Chantia Justice (triple jump) also turned in provisionals.
ROSSI RELAYS REVIEW
UCSD had a strong showing at the Rossi Relays on Saturday, Feb. 22. Among many notable performances were three Tritons who became provisional qualifiers for the NCAA Championships. Returners Chantia Justice and Kristin Sato finished 2-3 in the triple jump with marks of 38'7.5" and 38'6.75", respectively. Junior newcomer Anthony Capitulo took first place in the javelin, throwing a distance of 197'6", putting him at No. 5 on the program's all-time list. The only other individual first-place finish for the Tritons was by true freshman Markus Woods, who clocked in at 55.89 in the 400 hurdles.
MARQUEE HOME SCHEDULE
UCSD hosted five meets at Triton Track & Field Stadium in La Jolla in 2014. Headlining the home schedule were the top two meets on the Tritons' annual calendar in the lead-up to the NCAA Championships, those being the Cal-Nevada Collegiate Championships, April 4-5, and the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Championships, May 1-3. This marked the second straight year that UCSD hosted one of the premier college track and field events on the West Coast in the Cal-Nevada Championships. La Jolla was previously the site of the CCAA meet in 2006 and 2010.
CCAA ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
Junior Keith Rose and sophomore Kristin Sato swept the CCAA Track & Field Athlete of the Week honors on April 28. Their impressive performances at the Triton Invitational helped them earn the awards, with Sato winning the triple jump with a season best of 39'3", and Rose placing in the top ten in both the 200 and 100 with times of 21.73 and 10.84, respectively. Sophomore Paige Hughes on April 7 became the second Triton to be named a CCAA Track & Field Athlete of the Week for the 2014 season. The recognition came on the heels of her first-place finish in the 10000 meters at the Cal-Nevada Championships in La Jolla on April 4. Previously, junior Nash Howe earned the distinction for the second time in his career on March 17, having increased his top mark for 2014 to a personal-record 229'3" in winning the javelin competition at the San Diego Collegiate Challenge on March 15.
A FAMILY AFFAIR
Many athletes have come and gone through UCSD. However, for this year's track and field squads, five current competitors have a family history with the UCSD track and field teams. Junior sprinter Keith Rose has become an elite sprinter for UCSD. His sister, Jacqueline (Boo) Rose competed for the Tritons from 2009-12, becoming a three-time All-American, one-time conference champion, and putting her name in the record books several times. Another notable family team is that of brothers Nash and Nick Howe. Nash, a current junior javelin thrower and All-American has also won one CCAA championship. Nick competed from 2009-12, becoming the school record-holder for the javelin. Nick was a two-time national champion, a four-time conference champion, and a three-time All-American. Nick and Nash placed first and second, respectively, at the 2012 CCAA Championships.
Also joining the Rose and Howe families is sophomore Haley Libuit, a third generation UCSD track and field athlete. Haley hit her first NCAA provisional mark this year in the javelin, ranking her No. 6 in program history. She followed her two brothers, Brad and Kiley, to UCSD. Brad ranks third all-time for UCSD in the javelin, while Kiley ranks fourth all-time for UCSD in the javelin as well, finishing only one inch behind his brother. Sophomore Valerie Francis throws the hammer, as well as participating in the high jump and the triple jump. Her brother, Roger, was a jumper for the Tritons from 2005-08. Finally, the Nagengasts have sent a pair of throwers to La Jolla, with Benjamin Nagengast a current freshman, and Zach having just completed his college eligibility a year ago after beginning his career in 2010.
HOWE TO THROW YOUR JAVELIN
For the sixth season in a row, the Triton men's javelin contingent will be led by a student-athlete with the last name of Howe. Nash Howe comes off of his All-America sophomore campaign as the seventh-place finisher at his first national meet and first-time champion at the conference level. He took over as the CCAA javelin champ for his older brother, Nick Howe, now in his second year as a volunteer assistant coach on the UCSD staff while he continues to train on campus toward an Olympic run for Rio 2016. Nick was a two-time national champion, three-time All-American and four-time CCAA champion from 2009-12. He holds the school javelin record at 231'3", with Nash chasing his older brother in second at 229'3". The younger Howe made his season debut in La Jolla at the All-Cal Championships on March 8, and immediately booked a second straight trip to the NCAA Championships with an automatic qualifier of 218'10". The Triton coaching staff is also preparing him for beyond, looking ahead to the USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Sacramento, June 26-29.
Sabrina Pimentel is in her junior season after two previous years of impressive performances. As a freshman, Pimentel achieved All-American status running the opening leg of the seventh-place 4x400 relay (3:45.17). Her Triton foursome had ran to a school-record-breaking time of 3:42.17 in prelims at the NCAA Championships, after becoming CCAA champions in the same event. Pimentel also put her name in the record books during her sophomore season (2013) in the 400 and 800. With a time of 55.95, she garnered the third-fastest 400 in school history. Her performance in the 800 (2:10.90) qualified her for the NCAA Championsips, where she finished ninth with a time of 2:13.35. This year, Pimentel shaved more than a second off of the previous school record in the 800 from 2005, placing her at the top of the UCSD all-time list with a time of 2:09.07.
Senior Clint Rosser is coming off of an impressive junior season in the pole vault. In 2013, he won the pole vault at the Azusa Pacific Last Chance Qualifier, clearing a personal-best height of 16’3.5”. The mark, No. 3 all-time in program history, allowed the Westchester (Loyola HS) native to reach and compete in the NCAA Championships. Prior to that competition, Rosser earned the NCAA Elite 89 award for Division II men’s outdoor track and field for having the highest grade-point average (3.97 in environmental engineering) among athletes who made it to the NCAA Championships. He then moved 10 slots up form his No. 19 seed and narrowly missed out on becoming an All-American with a ninth-place showing (16'2.75").
SATO AND JUSTICE JUMPING TO THE TOP
Junior Chantia Justice and sophomore Kristin Sato excel for the Tritons in the jumps. In the 2013 season, Justice finished in the top-8 for both the high jump and the triple jump at the CCAA Championships. At the 2012 All-Cal Championships, Justice reached a mark of 5'1" in the high jump, giving her a fourth-place finish. During her freshman campaign, Sato had an impressive year, particularly in the long jump and the triple jump. At the CCAA Championships, Sato finished third in the long jump (17'9.4") and first in the triple jump (39'5.2"), contributing to her CCAA Freshman of the Year award. Sato's mark in the triple jump also qualified her for the NCAA Championships, where she finished 18th overall (38'8.75").
ROSE TO THE OCCASION
Junior sprinter Keith Rose is the school record-holder in both the 100 and 200 meters, and the reigning CCAA champion in the 100. He placed third in the 200 last season and led off the third-place 4x400 relay. Rose has broken the school mark in both individual sprints multiple times. He broke the 100 standard in prelims (10.71) and finals (10.62) at the 2013 CCAA Championships in Turlock last May. Rose first took over the 200 mark as a freshman (21.59) and lowered it in prelims (21.57) at the 2013 CCAA meet. He broke it a third time (21.51) on April 19, 2014, at the Soka Peace Invitational in Aliso Viejo, and a fourth time (21.30) at the 2014 CCAA Championships, earning him a second-place finish. He is the younger brother of former Triton All-American Jacqueline "Boo" Rose (2009-12).
UCSD has three All-Americans on its 2014 roster. Junior Nash Howe earned All-America honors with a seventh-place finish in the javelin a year ago in his debut at the NCAA Division II Championships. Junior Sabrina Pimentel and senior Lauren Irish are All-Americans from the 2012 season, when they made up half of UCSD's seventh-place 4x400 relay. Pimentel competed at the 2013 NCAA Championships as well, in the 800 meters. Remaining returners who made the 2013 NCAA field are senior pole vaulter Clint Rosser and sophomore Kristin Sato, the 2013 CCAA Freshman of the Year, in the triple jump. Pimentel and Rosser both fell narrowly short of All-America status with ninth-place finishes in their respective events.
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Those Tritons who have earned NCAA automatic qualifying marks, and those who have been chosen based on their provisional qualifying marks, will be competing at the 2014 NCAA Division II Championships. The three-day meet will be held May 22-24 in Allendale, Mich.