Bruins Host Second Home Meet Of Season On Saturday

March 31, 2000

March 28, 2000

Jeanette Bolden's UCLA women's team and Art Venegas' Bruin men's squad will host UCLA's second home meet of the season on Saturday (April 1) at the newly renovated Drake Stadium. Competing against the Bruin men and women will be Iowa, Wyoming and CS Northridge. The meet will start at noon.

Last Weekend
UCLA competed at the UCSD and Stanford Invitationals. At the UCSD Invite, the Bruin women were led by junior Christina Tolson, freshman Cari Soong and senior Seilala Sua. In the women's hammer throw, Tolson set the Pac-10 and school record (old mark, 199-0, Rachelle Noble, UCLA, 1998) with a winning effort of 205-7, Soong, a freshman, placed third (196-1, No. 2 throw in U. S. Junior history) and Sua was fifth, with a personal-best 193-9. Sua also placed second in the discus (208-5) and Tolson, a transfer from CS Northridge, was third in the shot put (52-11).

Two Weeks Ago
On March 18 at Drake Stadium, the Bruins hosted their first home meet of the season. In women's competition, UCLA won both the triangular (UCLA 170, Washington 107.5, California 104.5) and dual (UCLA 116-Cal 70, UCLA 119-UW 72) competitions. In men's competition, California won the triangular (California 144.5, Washington 142, UCLA 123.5) and the dual scores were (Cal 99.5-UCLA 97.5, UW 109-UCLA 90). The Bruin men were without the services of four top sprinters, all seniors, Damian Allen, Malachi Davis, Terrence Williams and Michael Granville.

For the Bruin women, junior Shakedia Jones won the 200m (23.93) and junior Michelle Perry won the 100m hurdles (13.70). Jones (anchor) and Perry (third leg) also ran on UCLA's winning 4 X 100m relay (44.64). In the field events, UCLA captured six individual titles, including a 1-2-3 finish in the women's pole vault (sophomore Tracy O'Hara won with a vault of 13-7), a mark of 200-1 by Sua to win the discus and Tolson winning both the shot put (52-6 3/4) and hammer (201-6).

In men's competition, the Bruins were led by senior Jess Strutzel, who won the 1500m (3:46.99) and ran the second leg on UCLA's winning 4 X 400m relay (3:12.46).

Three Weeks Ago
On March 10-11 at the 2000 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships in Fayetteville, AR, UCLA women's team won the team championship with 51 points, beating second-place South Carolina (41), third-place Arkansas (37) and fourth-place LSU (36.). It was the first-ever national indoor championship for the Bruins and it was UCLA's nation-leading 80th NCAA title.

The women had three National Champions' Sua in the shot put (56-8), she also placed second in the 20lb. weight throw (69-0) and O'Hara in the pole vault, her mark of 14-6 was a collegiate indoor record (old mark, 13-11 1/4, Melissa Price, 1999) and sophomore Keyon Soley in the long jump (21-4 3/4). With her 18 points at the Indoor, Sua, who last season won the shot put and discus at the NCAA Outdoor, becomes UCLA's all-time leading point-producer at the NCAA Championships (87), ahead of Dawn Dumble (82) and John Godina (81).

Also earning All-America honors for the Bruin women were Tolson, who placed third in the shot put (55-4 1/4) and eighth in the weight throw (61-7 1/2) and Jones, sixth (7.36) in the 60m. UCLA's other competitors were junior Erica Hoernig in the pole vault (11th, 12-3 1/2), senior Deana Simmons in the triple jump (12th, 41-7 3/4) and sophomore Darnesha Griffith in the high jump (12th, 5-10).

The Bruin men sent only two competitors and both performed admirably. Strutzel won the 800m (1:46.57) and junior Brian McLaughlin placed fourth in the pole vault (18-0 1/2), becoming only the fourth Bruin in history to vault over 18 feet. Strutzel defeated Missouri's Derek Peterson, the defending NCAA Indoor and Outdoor 800m champion and his time of 1:46.57 is the fastest in the nation.

Bruin Women's Head Coach Jeanette Bolden
Enters her seventh season as head coach. She has directed the Bruins to the 2000 NCAA Indoor title, five Pac-10 crowns in six years, including the last three straight (1997-99) and five top three finishes in six years at the NCAA Outdoor, including two consecutive (1998-99) second-place finishes. She has a UCLA unbeaten dual mark of 55-0.

Bruin Men's Head Coach Art Venegas
In his first season as Bruin head coach, taking over for Bob Larsen, who retired after 15 seasons (Larsen will remain on the staff as an assistant coach through this spring, then retire). Venegas was a Bruin assistant coach for 18 years and is a world-renowned coach in the throws. During his Bruin tenure, he directed the UCLA men's/women's throwing corps to 27 NCAA individual titles and in the 1990s, Bruin throwers have won 35 Pac-10 championships.

Looking Ahead
The Bruins will train through next weekend, preparing for the Mt. SAC Invitational (April 14-16).

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