May 28, 2008
The No. 3 men and No. 8 women's track and field team will head up the 405 Freeway to Cal State Northridge to compete at the NCAA West Region Championships this Friday and Saturday as tickets to the NCAA Championships are on the line. The top five finishers in each event (top three relays) will receive automatic bids to Nationals, while at-large spots will be given to athletes who finish in sixth through eighth-place based on their marks on the descending order list.
Competition begins on both days at 10:30 am with the hammer (women, Friday/men, Saturday). Running events begin at 2:00 pm on Friday with the 4x100m prelims and 3:00 pm on Saturday with the finals of the 4x100m.
The men's team is on track to send a large squad to nationals as they head into the meet with the most regional qualifiers of any team in the country (31). The men also have the most single event qualifiers in the country with six pole vaulters and six steeplechasers. UCLA has nine jumpers qualified for regionals, the most in the NCAA for that event group. The women's team has the most jumpers qualified in the country with 12 and are tied for seventh nationally with 22 regional qualifiers (UCLA had 29 qualifiers, but some of those athletes are not competing this weekend).
Both teams have multiple athletes ranked in the top eight in the region and several who will most definitely battle for a regional crown. On the women's side, juniors Rhonda Watkins (long jump) and Nicole Leach (400m hurdles) are looking to defend their 2006 and 2007 crowns and are rested and ready to compete after having sat out of the Pac-10 meet. Below is a list of top eight ranked Bruins.
200m - Stan Griffin, 8th (21.15)
800m - Cory Primm, 3rd (1:47.75)
1500m - Laef Barnes, 5th (3:41.76)
Steeple - Henry Hagenbuch, 2nd (8:45.91); Dylan Knight, 6th (8:51.25)
110m Hurdles - Kevin Craddock, 1st (13.46)
High Jump - Taylor Hobson, 5thT (6-10.75)
Pole Vault - Dustin DeLeo, 1st (18-1); Johnny Quinn, 3rdT (17-5); Greg Woepse, 6thT (17-1); Bobby Talley, 6thT (17-1); Chris Bencomo, 7th, 17-00.75)
Triple Jump - Jonathan Clark, 2nd (51-5.75)
Shot Put - John Caulfield, 5th (62-10.75); Darius Savage, 6th (61-6.75)
Discus - Greg Garza, 2nd (204-9); John Caulfield, 6th (197-10); Darius Savage, 7th (187-4)
Hammer - Boldizsar Kocsor, 1st (224-10)
100m - Jolanda Diego, 4th (11.46); Krystin Lacy, 8th (11.58)
200m - Jolanda Diego, 3rd (23.14)
800m - Krishna Curry, 5th (2:05.46)
100m Hurdles - Lindsay Rowe, 5th (13.70)
400m Hurdles - Nicole Leach, 1st (55.37)
4x400m - 3rd (3:34.40)
High Jump - Keneisha Creary, 4th T (5-11.25); Allie Miller, 6th (5-10.75); Maryann Wee, 6thT (5-8.75)
Pole Vault - Ingrid Kantola, 3rd (14-1.75); Tori Anthony, 5th (13-9.75); Katy Viuf, 7thT (13-5.75)
Long Jump - Rhonda Watkins, 3rd (21-3.50); Renee Williams, 4th (21-0); Danielle Watson, 7th (20-10)
Triple Jump - Renee Williams, 2nd (44-3.25)
Javelin - Tara Ross, 6th (162-9)
One competitor of note is freshman Tori Anthony, who had to sit out the Pac-10 Championships because she was suffering from mononucleosis. Anthony is feeling better and will compete at Regionals despite the fact that she has had limited to no practice over the last three weeks.