Nickless is Runner-up at Regionals as Gauchos Send Six to Nationals
May 28, 2007
The two day NCAA West Regional in Eugene, Oregon featured 20 UCSB Track and Field athletes in competition. The Gauchos finished the meet with 8 athletes in scoring position and 6 of those athletes earning automatic bids to the NCAA Championships will be held on June 6-9 in Sacramento, Calif. The women finished in 11th place with 22 points both of which were school records. This also marked the first time that UCSB finished highest amongst Big West schools at the NCAA Regional Championships.
Junior Bethany Nickless, who came into the meet ranked 14th in the region and 43rd nationally in the steeplechase, captured the silver for the second year running and vaulted herself to a ranking of 13 in the country with a school record time of 10:11.03. With her back-to-back podium finishes at regionals Nickless automatically earned herself back-to-back NCAA Championship appearances. Also scoring for the women's distance runners were seniors Stephanie Rothstein and Megan Lewis who cruised to 7th(16:38.60) and 8th(16:39.78) placed showings in a tune-up for the NCAA Championship 10k. In the women's 1500 it was not meant to be for sophomore Danielle Domenichelli in her first regional appearance. Domenichelli was coming off an injury and unable to make to the finals.
For the women's throwers it was once again the senior duo of Amy Haapanen and Heather Quinn. Haapanen finished third, fifth and eight in the shot put(51-01.50), hammer(208-4) and discus(169-01) respectively, automatically qualifying her for nationals in both the shot and hammer. Quinn also competed in all three events to close out her career at UCSB the highlight of which was finishing 14th in the discus(156-0), one spot higher then she came in.
In the men's throws senior John Delaney was the surprise of the meet for the Gauchos, coming in 5th and automatically qualifying for nationals with a personal best in the javelin of 210' 3". Delaney's teammates Kyle Baker was one spot behind him in 6th, just missing the automatic trip to the championships. Senior Eugene Bradley just missed automatic qualifying by finishing 6th with a toss of 201' 6" in the regional meet. The top 6-8 athletes who didn't automatically qualify at regionals are selected for nationals and Bradley's toss of 212' 4" earlier this season ranks him 4th among those in contention. Junior Reif Lawson also competed in the hammer finishing 16th overall. In the shot put sophomore Tim Delmundo led the way with a personal best throw of 56' 4.75" for 10th overall. Delmundo was joined by juniors Scott Anderson and Jeff Stewart as Anderson finished 22nd with 52' 6.5" and Stewart fouled all three of his attempts. The high jump featured junior Jacob Maus who had a rough day and had a no-height for the first time this season.
Men's distance runners were lead by Mike Chavez who finished 7th overall with a time of 3:47.39 in the 1500 just missing the automatic 5th place spot. Chavez was joined in the 1500 by sophomore Scott Smith who gained some valuable experience in the prelims finishing two seconds behind the winner in his heat. In the steeplechase junior Mike Powers finished 10th as he lead the way winning section 1 in 9:04.08 joined by senior Micah Tyhurst who finished 11th in 9:21.96. Senior Tetlo Emmen missed making his third NCAA Championships appearance as he finished 9th and one spot from making the region finals in the 800. Senior JD Krawczyk was in a grueling 5k that left him with a 19th place finish.
Up next for the Gauchos is the NCAA Championships, held on June 6-9 in Sacramento, Calif., which will feature Rothstein, Lewis, Bradley, Haapanen, Delaney and Nickless.