Grand Canyon men, women's squads nab first PacWest outdoor championships
SAN DIEGO, Calif. -- Grand Canyon's men’s and women’s track and field teams were both winners at the inaugural Pacific West Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The women’s team won in substantial fashion, accumulating 302 points while second-place finisher, Azusa Pacific, collected 197.50 points. The men also outscored APU by 67 points to claim the conference title with 397 points.
GCU had 14 first-place finishes, while several athletes also added automatic qualifying marks to their resumes.
"We have waited three long years for this team moment to compete in a conference meet and I'm thrilled to have won both team titles with this special group of student-athletes," head coach Tom Flood said. "Again, it was a total team effort, with so many outstanding preformances that I don't even know who to start with. We truly left our mark on the PacWest Conference.
"The day began with two blazing performances in the 4x100-meter relays. The great performances just kind of snowballed from there. The jumpers, throwers, sprinters and hurdlers all lit up the place."
The women claimed the top four spots in the 100 dash, led by Shavine Hodges's provisional time of 11.58 seconds. Samantha Bogatz also posted a provisional time of 11.81 seconds to take second, while Brianne Kee and Maria Kropf rounded out the top finishers for GCU. Lesilia Foster placed eighth en route to helping the 'Lopes collect 30 total points in the event.
Hodges picked up her second individual win in the women’s 200 dash with a season-best and automatic qualifying time of 23.51 seconds, tied for the third-fastest time in the country. Petra Fanty also picked up an automatic time in the event at 23.61 seconds, the sixth-best nationally, to take second. Bogatz finished third with a provisional time of 24.06 seconds, while Kee placed fifth.
Hodges was named Female Track Athlete of the Meet with her two individual victories and serving as a leg in both winning relays to add 25 points to the team total.
Fred Taylor posted his best time of the season and second-fastest in Division II, an automatic qualifying time of 10.23 seconds, in the 100 dash en route to winning the event. Dario Horvat was just behind his teammate, also with an automatic mark of 10.28 seconds. Lance Parker placed sixth in the event as GCU collected 21 points.
Taylor was also a double individual winner for GCU, taking the top spot in the men’s 200 dash with the top time in DII and automatic qualifying mark of 20.75 seconds. Horvat finished third with a provisional time of 21.35 seconds. GCU also took the sixth through eighth spots with Oliver Smith, Carl Houston and Parker also collecting points.
Taylor garnered Male Track Athlete of the Meet honors with his two individual victories and his participation in one of GCU's two winning relays.
The 'Lopes took the top-three spots in the women’s 400 dash behind the automatic qualifying effort from Fanty, whose time of 52.92 seconds is the second-fastest in the country. Moya McKenzie also collected an automatic time of 53.47, the fourth-best in the nation. Jennifer Dowty finished third, while Christine Miles took fifth as GCU added 28 points to its team total.
Smith’s provisional time of 47.68 seconds in the men’s 200 dash placed him second in the finals. Josh Ralston took fourth, Mikio Bain sixth and Stephan Bullard eighth to help the 'Lopes add 17 points to their team total.
|1. Grand Canyon - 297||1. Grand Canyon - 302|
|2. Azusa Pacific - 230||2. Azusa Pacific - 197.50|
|3. Academy of Art - 73||3. Point Loma - 118.50|
|4. Cal Baptist - 69||4. Fresno Pacific - 102|
|5. Fresno Pacific - 56||5. Cal Baptist - 61|
|6. Point Loma - 55||6. Academy of Art - 22|
Bullard also took second in the men’s 800 run with a time of 1:53.93.
"Stephan pulled off what I consider an iron-man performance, running the 400 and 800 finals within 30 minutes of one another," Flood said.
Tyler Sipes won the men’s 110 hurdles with a season-best automatic time of 13.89 seconds, the third-fastest in the country. Jahliell Wiltshire was the fourth-place finisher in the event.
Kropf won the women’s 100 hurdles with a provisional time of 13.95 seconds, the fastest mark for the 'Lopes in the event this season. Callie Davis also collected a provisional mark of 14.29 seconds to claim third. Sydney Tassielli and Tearra Price took sixth and seventh place, respectively.
After taking the top time in the 400 hurdles preliminaries, Amanda Sims won the finals with a provisional time of 1:01.43, her fastest of the season. For the men, Ramon Cooper claimed fourth, while Sipes came in seventh.
Price and Tassielli finished second and third, respectively, in the heptathlon, while Morgan Kueter claimed the sixth spot.
GCU’s 4x100 women’s squad of Kee, Bogatz, Fanty and Hodges won the event with an automatic time of 44.95 seconds, their fastest of the season and second-best in DII. The 4x400 relay team of Miles, Hodges, McKenzie and Fanty were victorious in the event with a provisional time of 3:43.99.
The men’s 4x100 team of Houston, Taylor, Parker and Horvat also won with its first automatic mark of the season at 39.74 seconds, the second-best nationally. Similar to the women’s relay squads, the men’s 4x400 team of Ralston, Bullard, Cooper and Smith won the event with a provisional time of 3:12.14.
Megan Rivera picked up points for the women’s team with her sixth-place finish in the 5,000 run.
Dylan Rudolph was the first-place finisher in the men’s hammer throw with a mark of 49.94 meters. Vanessa Levy finished second on the women’s side with a toss of 49.06 meters. Kylie Brill finished fifth, while Nyomi Mosley was the eighth-place finisher for the women, and Brandon Pineda and Kyle Jervis placed third and fifth, respectively, for the men.
Levy picked up her first of the day in the women’s shot put, and was followed by Mosley in third and Brill in eighth. Levy had an impressive overall performance for GCU at the meet, contributing 32 points to the women's team total.
Pineda took third in the men’s shot put, while Jervis, Rudolph and Thomas Shows were also point collectors by claiming sixth through eighth, respectively.
The men went second through fourth in the men’s triple, as Kevin Lashley, Robert Matthew and Karlin Stewart each collected provisional marks. Jermaine Murray was also a points finisher after taking eighth.
On the women’s side in the same event, Jessica Yates finished second with a provisional mark at 12.52 meters, her best leap of the season. Amber Yingling was just behind her teammate, also posting a provisional mark at 12.43 meters to claim third. Kee added points for GCU in the event with her seventh-place finish.
The 'Lopes had four men collect points in the high jump competition, as Ralston, Cooper and Lashley took second through fourth, and Stewart finished sixth. The women had two athletes finish in the top eight, led by Yates in second and Lindsey Wright in fifth.