Photo by: Nick Feller/UCSD Athletics
Triton Track & Field Stadium is set to host over 1000 athletes for the annual Triton Invitational.
Olympic Champion Among 1000-Plus Athletes Expected as Track & Field Hosts Triton Invitational This Week
Release: Tuesday 04/22/2014 

Triton Invitational
Friday, April 25 • 10 a.m.
UCSD Throwing Field • La Jolla

Saturday, April 26 • 10 a.m.
Triton Track & Field Stadium • La Jolla
Live Results

The UC San Diego track and field teams are back in action at home this Friday and Saturday. UCSD will be hosting its fourth meet of the season, putting on the annual Triton Invitational at Triton Track & Field Stadium in La Jolla. The Tritons are sending out full squads for both the men and women, alongside many elite athletes from former Olympians, Olympic hopefuls, and top programs. Overall, there are expected to be over 1000 athletes competing.

Friday will consist of women's throwing events, starting with the hammer throw at 10 a.m., the discus (invitational) at 2 p.m., and concluding with more discus (open section) at 4 p.m.  These events will take place at the UCSD Throwing Field west of Triton Track & Field Stadium.

On Saturday, the rest of the field, jumping, and track events will take place. Throwing again kicks off the day at 10 a.m. with the men's hammer (west field). The women's Léon T. Roach III pole vault starts the jumping events in the south pit at 11 a.m., alongside the men's long jump. The men's high jump (stadium), men's triple jump (southeast pit) and women's triple jump (northeast pit) begin at 4 p.m. to mark the end of the jumping events. The action on the track gets underway at 11 a.m. with the 4x100 relays, and ends with the men's 5000, which has an approximate start time of 6:25 p.m.

Admission this Friday to the three women's throws events at the UCSD Throwing Field adjacent (west) to Triton Track & Field Stadium is free. Admission on Saturday is $10 for adults, and $5 for seniors 65 and up, children 8 and older and visiting students with identification. The meet is free to attend for UCSD students with identification, and children 7 and younger. Parking on campus is free on Saturday, but parking is limited at the track facility. Spectators are encouraged to use the Hopkins Parking Structure behind RIMAC Arena. It is strongly recommended that spectators wishing to attend Friday's activity do purchase a parking permit, with pay stations located throughout the Hopkins structure. Please refer to the parking map located here.

Ashton Eaton, the reigning Olympic and world decathlon champion and world-record-holder in the decathlon, is entered to compete in Saturday's 400-meter hurdles as the No. 2 seed (50.00) behind former Jamaica Olympian, Isa Phillips (48.05). The event is slated for an approximate 3:40 p.m. start, with Eaton (lane 4) and Phillips (lane 5) side by side in the first and fastest heat among four. Eaton starred at the University of Oregon and will run Saturday under the Nike umbrella. As the last Olympic decathlon champion in London in 2012, he currently holds the title of World's Greatest Athlete. Several other U.S. Olympians, international Olympians and hopefuls from the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista join Eaton in the massive field for the 2014 Triton Invitational. The field is about 33 percent larger than it was for the 2013 edition, when there were roughly 600 or so athletes entered, compared to the 1000-plus this year.

Other notables entered from a more local standpoint include former UCSD national champions Sonali Merrill (100 hurdles, 400 hurdles) and Linda Rainwater (high jump). Merrill was herself a 2012 Olympian at the London Games, for her native Sri Lanka in the 400 hurdles. A third former Triton national champion, Nick Howe, joins younger brother and current UCSD junior All-American Nash Howe in a top men's javelin field (2 p.m.). They have been placed together in the fourth of four flights. At least one other former UCSD All-American will be on hand, in Stephanie LeFever (long jump). Triton sophomore distance standout Paige Hughes (San Diego/Cuyamaca College/Valhalla HS) will run against younger sister Andrea Hughes of the University of San Diego in the second of four sections of the 1500 (11:20 a.m.).

Live results will be available at Flash Results West. Complete results will also be posted at

The Tritons' squad split up between three meets this past week. 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 Saturday. 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.

Sixteen 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/197'6"), 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).

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 39'1").

The UCSD men are ranked No. 23 in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) national poll, up from No. 24 the previous week. The Triton women and men were rated No. 1 and No. 3, respectively, in the season's initial outdoor listing on March 18, the highest ever for each program. Click here to view the week-by-week rankings.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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).

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.

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.

UCSD hosts five meets at Triton Track & Field Stadium in La Jolla in 2014. Headlining the home schedule are 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 will mark the second straight year that UCSD hosts one of the premier college track and field events on the West Coast in the Cal-Nevada Championships. La Jolla awaits the CCAA meet for the first time since 2010.

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. 

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").

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").

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) just last week on April 19 at the Soka Peace Invitational in Aliso Viejo. He is the younger brother of former Triton All-American Jacqueline 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.

UCSD is coming off of a fourth consecutive second-place finish at the CCAA Championships on the women's side, all behind Chico State. The Triton men have produced three successive third-place efforts, with Chico State now the 10-time defending league champion. UCSD was 11.33 points back of second-place Cal Poly Pomona in Turlock in 2013. Triton Track & Field Stadium will serve as host of the 2014 CCAA Championships. The Triton men and women both placed second behind Chico State the last time the meet was held in La Jolla in 2010. That runner-up showing, by a mere 2.83 points (212.33-209.5), snapped a run of five consecutive conference titles for the UCSD women.

Nash Howe (javelin), Kellen Levy (10000), Keith Rose (100) and Kristin Sato (triple jump) are returning CCAA champions from 2013. All told, there are 14 Tritons on the 2014 roster who produced top-three finishes in at least one individual event at the 2013 CCAA Championships. They are Howe (1st, javelin), Levy (1st, 10000), Rose (1st, 100; 3rd, 200), Sato (1st, triple jump, 3rd, long jump), Lorato Anderson (2nd, 800), Megan Benham (3rd, pole vault), Veronica Bradley (tied 3rd, high jump), Sean Cook (2nd, long jump), Daniel Franz (2nd, steeplechase), Eva Isaacs (2nd, shot put), Chantia Justice (2nd, triple jump), Sabrina Pimentel (2nd, 400), Clint Rosser (3rd, pole vault) and Julia Wildenthaler (3rd, triple jump). Pimentel and Lauren Irish were on the third-place women's 4x400 relay, while Rose, Nate Ford and David Guinasso were part of the third-place men's 4x400.

UCSD swept the men's and women's CCAA Freshman of the Year awards a year ago, with field standouts Sean Cook and Kristin Sato earning the distinctions. Sato won the triple jump and placed third in the long jump, while Cook was second in the long jump, sixth in the high jump and 11th in the triple jump. Sato went on to warrant a late addition to the NCAA field, where she placed 18th at her first nationals in the triple jump.

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The UCSD track and field teams will be returning to Triton Track & Field Stadium for their fifth and final home meet of the season. The Tritons host the CCAA Championships for the first time since 2010. The meet will begin on Thursday, May 1, and continue through Saturday, May 3 in La Jolla.


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