Hope Bender
Hope Bender
Year: Senior
Hometown: Newport Beach, CA
High School: Newport Harbor HS
Position: Heptathlon

2017-2018 Track

Competed in 13 meets for her third year as a Gaucho. Set a new best in the indoor pentathlon at the UW Invitational where she finished first overall with 3884 points. Took that newfound momentum to the USATF Indoor Championships where she finished fifth overall in the pentathlon with a score of 4149 points, good enough to qualify her for NCAA Indoor Nationals for the first time. At indoor nationals, she would finish Second-Team All-American with her 12th place finish in 4010 points. Took 2nd at the Jim Bush Invitational at the 100m hurdles where she ran a new personal best of 13.62, just .03 seconds off the school record. Won both the 100m hurdles and the 400m hurdles at the Big West Challenge Cup in times of 13.86 and 58.68 respectively. Put together an incredible series of events at the Bryan Clay Invitational where she set a new personal best in the heptathlon, setting new bests in five out of seven total events to score 5725 points respectively, good enough to qualify her for the NCAA Outdoor Championships and moving up to No. 2 on the UCSB All-Time for the heptathlon. She also tied the 100m hurdles school record in the process at that meet, running 13.59 to match 2012 alumni and 2016 Olympian Barbara Nwaba. Won the 100m at the Cal Poly Dual Meet where she ran 11.89, putting her at No. 3 all-time for that event at UCSB. Put on a clinic at the Big West Conference Championships where she took four podium finishes, taking third in the 100m hurdles and the the 4x400m relay, and finishing first in the heptathlon and the 400m hurdles. She would go on to set the school record in the 400m hurdles, taking down 2013 alumni Amanda Rodriguez' mark of 58.32 with a 58.02 clocking. Competed in the NCAA West Regional Preliminary Rounds where she'd take down another school record, this time in the 100m hurdles with a time of 13.33. Concluded her season at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships where she'd take Second-Team All-American honors, matching her indoor national finish in 12th with a score of 5653 points. 

2016-2017 Track

Competed eight times for her second season. Started off with a win in the 100m hurdles at the Gaucho Round-Up, clocking 13.94. Bested that time at the UCLA Legends Invite, clocking a new personal best of 13.84 to take fifth overall. Set her personal best score in the heptathlon at the 2017 Mt. SAC Relays, tallying up a score of 5212 points. In the process, she clocked a personal best in the 200m of 24.66, which would put her on the UCSB all time list at seventh overall for that specific event. An unfortunate no height in the high jump would leave her completely out of the running for another podium finish in the heptathlon at the Big West Conference Championships, but that would only add fuel to the flame as she would come back with a vengenace in the individual events. Hope would go on to take second in the 100m hurdles in 13.74, first in the 400m hurdles in 58.87, and help out the 4x400m relay squad to take fifth in 3:45.24, their fastest time of the season. Her hurdle performances were both personal bests, with her 100m hurdles time boosting her to tie for number two on the all time list. 

2015-2016 Track

Established a strong presence in the conference in her first season at UCSB. Set a personal best in the heptathlon at the 2016 Sam Adams Invitational by chalking up a whopping 4909 points, propelling herself to number four on the all-time list in her first ever attempt at the grueling two day event. Got a dual pair of event wins at the Cal Poly Dual Meet, clocking a personal best 13.89 in the 100h hurdles and sharing a part in the 4x400m relay. Ended the season on a high note with a barrage of points scored at the Big West Conference Championships, taking 3rd in the heptathlon, 4th in the 100m hurdles, 3rd in the 400m hurdles, and 6th in the 4x400m relay. Bender set two personal bests in the process, scoring 5114 points in the heptathlon and clocking 59.74 in the 400m hurdles. She moved to number two all time in both events. 


Bender comes to UCSB via Newport Harbor HS where she excelled in the sprints and hurdles. Bender, a former motocross racer found the throttle on the track, erupting in her senior year to a top-25 national mark in the 300m hurdles. Bender established a new Orange County record in the 300m hurdles after running 42.51 at the CIF Finals. She would go on to lower that mark to 42.18 at the CIF State meet. Earlier in the year, she won the Orange County Championships with a then 300m hurdle best of 43.39, one of four Newport Harbor School records she set during her senior season. Her school record in the 100m hurdles was set and reset nearly every weekend her senior year, her best time being 14.35. In her first year of hurdling, Bender broke the 15 second barrier seven times. Her 400m best was set at the OC Championships, placing her third in 57.09, also a school record. Her 200m best of 25.40 set at the Beach Cities Invite rounds out her record collection. Prep coaches were Eric Tweit, Tony Ciarelli, and Erich Moreno.  


Parents are Steve and Lynn Bender...Has one sibling, Faith...Majoring in Biology...Aspires to become a Genetic Engineer...Favorite Musician is Rihanna...Favorite Book is Redeeming Love...Personal heroes are Allyson Felix and Jessica Ennis...Also competed in Motocross and Horse-Show Jumping. 

Collegiate Bests

100m - 11.89 (2018 Cal Poly Dual)

200m - 24.15 (2018 Big West Multi Championships) 

800m - 2:11.30 (2018 Bryan Clay Invitational) 

100m Hurdles - 13.33 (2018 NCAA West Regional Meet) 

400m Hurdles - 58.02 (2018 Big West Conference Championships) 

High Jump - 1.66m (5' 5 1/4") (NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships) 

Long Jump - 5.78m (18' 11 3/4") (2018 Bryan Clay Invitational) 

Shot Put - 12.04m (39' 6") (2018 Big West Multi Championships) 

Javelin - 35.83m (117' 7") (2018 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships) 

Heptathlon - 5725 (2018 Bryan Clay Invitational) 

Big West Championships 

2018 - Heptathlon, 1st, 5653

2018 - 400m hurdles, 1st, 58.02

2018 - 100m hurdles, 3rd, 13.73

2018 - 4x400m relay, 3rd, 3:44.13

2017 - Heptathlon, 14th, 4312 

2017 - 400m hurdles, 1st, 58.87

2017 - 100m hurdles, 2nd, 13.74

2017 - 4x400m relay, 5th, 3:45.24

2016 - Heptathlon, 3rd, 5112 

2016 - 400m hurdles, 3rd, 59.74

2016 - 100m hurdles, 4th, 13.87

2016 - 4x400m relay, 6th, 3:49.05 

NCAA West Regionals 

2018 - 100m hurdles, 19th, 13.51

2018 - 400m hurdles, 14th, 58.41

NCAA Championships 

2018 - Heptathlon, 12th, 5653

NCAA Championships (Indoor) 

2018 - Pentathlon, 12th, 4010