Gauchos Gain Experience at Ben Brown

Gauchos Gain Experience at Ben Brown

Fullerton, CA – The UCSB Track and Field teams headed down for a two-day Invitational this past weekend hosted by CSU Fullerton. The Ben Brown Invite featured over 20 schools, including 6 from the Big West Conference.

It was the throws squad on Friday afternoon that got the meet started strong. As the meet went on into the night, the Gaucho distance crew would go to work in their first 5000m of the season under the lights. The rest of the team would chase personal bests throughout the day Saturday under the hot southern California sun.
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"This is one of the larger meets on our schedule" reflected Associate Head Coach Cody Fleming.
We saw strong performances on the track from Avila, Hinkle, Guijarro, Janes, Bender and again from Azu-Irondi.
In the field Nestor had a big personal best in the hammer and we saw growth in the field from Usgaard, Gode, Emrick and O'Brine."
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New Gaucho All-Time Marks
Valerie Nestor 193'0 #3 Hammer Throw
Kayla Thayer 44'0.5" #8 Shotput 
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Event-by-Event Highlights
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Distance
It was perfect racing conditions for Friday night's 5000m and the Gauchos saw a whole crop of new personal bests in the event.
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On the men's side, SO Carlos Guijarro shined as he executed a smart, patient race that rewarded him with a 10 second PR. His time of 14:26.62 placed 2nd in the "A" heat and was a strong season debut at the distance. Teammates Adam Avila and Austin Lay followed in 14:36.23 and 14:42.86. Bryan Guijarro and Josh Paradise would also finish under the 15 minute barrier.
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On the women's side, frontrunner Jenna Hinkle would be uncontested as she ran mostly alone to her first sub-17 clocking, 16:53.79. She would win the "A" heat by nearly 13 seconds. Following Hinkle was a breakthrough by SR Emily Lopez, who would run 17:20.13 to be the second Gaucho across the line, a massive new personal best. SO Miranda Ross would rally close behind in a new PR of 17:24.14. When all was said and done, there would be 7 Gaucho women under 18 minutes in this early season 12.5 lap race.
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On Saturday, the focus shifted to the Mile and 800m events. SR Andrew Verdin would put on a clinic as he posted the fastest time of the day of 4:13.98. SO Sabrina Janes would also demonstrate great racing skills as she posted the fastest time in the women's race of 4:56.14.
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The 800m was highlighted by a season best by SR Kaitlin Large of 2:15.01.
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Sprints, Hurdles, and Relays
In the Men's 100m dash, school record holder Sike Azu-Irondi would log a 10.66 to place second overall. Jazmin Moss would set a new best of 12.36 in the Women's race.
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The 200m was led by Alanna Epps and Lee Duncan. They would log marks of 25.73 and 22.31.
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Betsy Armitage would run the best collegiate mark in the meet of 57.88 in the women's 400m. Blake DeHaven would pull off a 50.55/1:56.70 400m-800m double.
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SO Hope Bender would log another great sub-14 second 100m hurdle mark of 13.95.
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Jumps
SO Sierra Emrick cleared her highest bar this season in the Pole Vault as she placed second overall in the meet with a 12'8.75". SO Zach Nichols would tie his personal best with a 15'6.25" bar for 3rd.
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Tori Usgaard would win among collegiates in the Long Jump with a 18'9" leap. JR Kiely Gode would also jump 18'9" to place second.
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Jazmin Moss would lead the Gauchos in the Triple Jump with a 38'7.5" second place finish.
SO Joshua Rennick would clear 6'6.75" in the High Jump to place 5th.
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Throws
SR Valerie Nestor continued her momentum she's carried all season and fired off a 193'0" throw in the Hammer to move up to UCSB #3 All-Time.
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JR Kayla Thayer set a new best in the Shotput with a heave of 44'0.5". This moves her for the first time to #8 on the UCSB All-Time Shot Put list. 
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SR Stephen Leach threw 186'9" in the Hammer Throw to set a season best and place among the top 5 in the meet.
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And SR Matthew Kuskey and Tori Usgaard had solid throws of 209'1" and 118'2" to lead the Gauchos in the Javelin.
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Up Next

"We're heading into finals back on campus so the team will now turn their attention to their studies until were on to the next one" concluded Coach Fleming. Both teams will next compete at the San Diego Aztec Invite over spring break on March 23-25. 

See photos from the meet and live updates on the team's FacebookTwitter, and Instagram