SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The UCSB men's and women's track and field teams will make their 2017 outdoor debut this Saturday, Feb. 18th at Westmont College for a double dual against Westmont and Pepperdine. The meet will feature eleven running events and eight field events. The first field event, the hammer throw, is scheduled to begin at 10am. The first event on the track, the 4 x 100m relay, will go off at 12pm.
The meet will be scored 5-3-2-1 on the men's side and 7-5-4-3-2-1 for the women (including Pepperdine). The relays will be scored 5-3 and 7-5-3.
Round-Up Banquet Information
Following the meet, the UCSB track and field programs will welcome friends, family and alumni of the program back to campus for the annual Round-Up Fundraiser Banquet. The event will be held in the Phil Womble Hall of Champions in the ICA Building starting at 6pm and will run until 9pm.
Dinner and drinks will be served and there will be several events set to go off such as a raffle and performing groups for entertainment.
Tickets will be $60 for adults and $30 for children. Tickets for UCSB Track and Field Alumni or UCSB Cross Country Alumni who graduated in the years 2012-2016 can also purchase a reduced price ticket for $30.00.
Purchase your tickets online at this LINK.
Returning Big West Scorers
UCSB will enter the 2017 season with twenty five returning Big West Track and Field scorers on the roster. Out of the group, seven stood on the podium and two earned Big West Gold (Tyler Nelson, Decathlon & Bryan Guijarro, 10,000m).
Senior Adam Avila returns after placed second in the 3,000m steeplechase as a Junior at the 2015 Big West meet and has a best time of 8:59.60- eighth All-Time in UCSB history.
Sophomore James Douglass placed 6th in the 800m as a true Freshman with a time of 1:52.60, the fastest Freshman in the final.
Junior Carlos Guijarro placed 5th in the 10,000m, setting a personal best of 30:50.74.
Senior Myles McDonald earned 4th running 52.29 in the 400m Hurdles. He broke the school record with a 51.55 performance earlier in the season and placed 18th at the NCAA West Regional.
Senior George Baier pulled off an impressive triple crown by placing 3rd in the Steeplechase, 3rd in the 1500m, and 5th in the 5000m. His 1500m best of 3:45.56 is #5 UCSB All-Time and qualified him to NCAA First Round.
Sophomore Joshua Rennick placed 7th with a leap of 46'11.5" in the Triple Jump as a true Freshman.
Sophomore Kordell Hampton placed 7th in the Shotput (51'11.25") and 5th in the Discus (169'7"). He was the highest placing Freshman in the conference in both events.
Senior Stephen Leach pulled off 6th place in the Shotput with a heave of 168'0".
Senior Matthew Kuskey placed 3rd in the Javelin, earning a place on the podium with a throw of 199'7". His 222'0" PR earned him a spot at the NCAA First Round.
Junior Tyler Nelson took home the Big West Championships Crown in the Decathlon with a career high of 7220 points.
Senior Bryan Guijarro returns after winning the 10,000m title at the 2015 Big West Championships. His best of 29:11.20 is #4 UCSB All-Time.
Senior Betsy Armitage set a 400m best of 55.80 to place 8th in last year's final.
Junior Jenna Hinkle returns after placing 4th in last year's 1500m and 7th in the 5000m.
Sophomore Sabrina Janes placed 5th in a breakthrough 1500m at the conference meet last year.
Hope Bender enters her Sophomore year after placing 4th in the 100 Hurdles, 3rd in the 400 Hurdles, and 3rd in the Heptathlon, a banner year for a true Freshman.
Sophmore Sierra Emrick placed 7th in the her first Pole Vault final. Her best of 13'3.5" is #2 UCSB All-Time.
Junior Kiely Gode leaped 18'6" to nab 8th place in the Long Jump.
Senior Valerie Nestor placed 6th in last year's Hammer final.
And Senior Tori Usgaard comes back to attack the multis after placing 4th in last year Heptathlon final.
2016 Big West Recap
The UCSB men rallied for a a big second day surge to score 125 points, finishing as the runner-up team to only Long Beach State. The Gauchos used their depth in the distance events totals to tally their score, earning 18 points in the 5000m, 21 points in the 1500m, and 16 points in the 800m. Also coming in to make a difference was 21 points in the Javelin and 14 in the Decathlon.
The Gaucho women would similarly steadily move up the standings as they also finished runner-up to only UC Davis. Big points came from Freshman Hope Bender, who would score 18 points by herself and Senior Tori Tsolis, who scored 16. The placing would not be possible, however, without a balanced team effort throughout all the events, as every point made a difference - the final score had UCSB at 118.5 points to UC Riverside's 118.
Two second-place finishes was a great feat only made possible by the grit and determination of the Gauchos that weekend.
2016 NCAA Finalists
The Gauchos sent one athlete to Eugene for the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships- Senior Jessica Emde. The school record holder represented the Gauchos in the collegiate finale, placing 21st in the nation. She has a best of 5'10.75".
2017 Competition Schedule
After opening at Westmont the Gauchos will travel to UC San Diego for the All-Cal Championships, with the women hoping to defend their title. Next the team will be at CSU Fullerton for the Ben Brown Invitational under the lights. As the Gauchos head into spring break they are scheduled to travel back to the Aztec Invite. Hosted by San Diego State, the Aztec has earned the reputation as one of the top spring break meets in California. The Gauchos will start the winter quarter with a a non-team scoring weekend with the Sam Adams Multi Event and the the Bruin Legends Invite at UCLA. In what has become one of the biggest distance qualifying weekends in college track, the first weekend in April also has the Stanford Invite scheduled.
The Gauchos will enter the heart of their season by traveling to Long Beach State for the Big West Challenge Cup. UCSB will take on Long Beach State, UC Irvine and CSUF. The Mt. Sac Weekend will follow and will see the Gauchos send qualified athletes to the Mt. Sac meet while the rest of the team will compete at the Bryan Clay Invite. The Gauchos will finish the regular season with the Triton Invite hosted by UCSD before traveling to San Luis Obispo to dual the Cal Poly Mustangs.
The Big West Championship, hosted by CSU Fullerton, will be contested over two weekends in May. The combined events (heptathlon and decathlon) will take place May 6-7. The Big West Championship meet will then pick back up for the remainder of the events May 13-14.
The NCAA First Round will be held in Austin, Texas for the West Region. Athletes ranked in the top-48 in their respective events will earn a bid into the meet.
Athletes placing in the top-12 in their event at the First Round Competition will earn a trip to Eugene, Oregon for the NCAA Final. Athletes in the combined events will qualify for this meet based on a descending order list of the top-24 athletes in the NCAA.