The UCSB track and field team decided to flex its muscles at its first regular-season team meet of the year when it competed in the All-Cal Meet in Irvine this past weekend.
The women’s team showcased impressive performances. After all was said and done, the UCSB squad had outperformed and outscored the competition, capturing first with a grand total of 253 points.
“I feel this year we can really make a statement with our women’s team,” sophomore pole vaulter Deborah Samson said.
Samson smoked her opponents in the pole vault. She qualified for the Big West Championships and also notched first place in the event by vaulting her way to 12’00.75″. Samson looks forward to improving her technique to take her vaulting to new heights.
“My goal to jump this year is 13’06” because I feel that’s an achievable goal for this year,” Samson said. “With that height I should be able to compete in the NCAA.”
Sophomore Amber Newsome was the first-place finisher in the 100-meter sprint in what turned out to be a 1-2-3-4 finish for the Gauchos. Sophomore Jasmine Washington came home with two victories in the 200 meters and the 400 meters and will compete in the Big West Championships at the end of the season.
“We really came together as a team for our first meet,” Washington said. “We’ve been working really hard in preseason, doing a lot of intervals and lifting.”
The men’s team, which won the meet last year, put forth a worthy effort and managed to place second in the meet behind a characteristically powerful Bruin squad. UCLA nipped the Gauchos by 27 points.
Notable times were received from UCSB’s distance runners, with junior Aaron Sharp and sophomore Dave Monico turning in a 1-2 finish in the 5,000 meters with times of 14:59.88 and 15:19.54, respectively. Sharp’s time in the event was also a lifetime best. Sophomore Brandon von Guenthner and freshman J.T. Service completed the steeple side-by-side, finishing second and third. The duo came away with lifetime best finishes in the event.
The field performance by junior Paul Anderson in the hammer throw was one highlight of the meet for the men’s side. Anderson’s throw of 169’07” is a personal best for the junior, as well as a Big West qualifying mark. Sophomore Kevin Weaver also came to his team’s aid by scoring points for UCSB, taking first in the high jump with yet another Big West qualifying mark of 6’08”.
“I think we did pretty good, because UCLA is a good team,” Weaver said. “We’re looking to do better individually, and [because of that] we’ll do better as a team.”