IRVINE, Calif. - Cal State Northridge track & field had its final tuneup before the 2012 Big West Championships Saturday and Sunday as the Matadors looked to qualify additional athletes into the conference meet coming up May 11-12.
At the annual Steve Scott Invitational at UC Irvine, several Matadors looked to improve on season-bests while others looked to reach the qualifyng standard for the Big West Championships.
On the men's side, Sean Alfino narrowly missed automatically qualifying in the 100 meters in his first competition of the season after running 10.91 at UC Irvine. Following Alfino's 23rd-place finish, Darquis Rucker finished 29th in 11.00. In his final tuneup prior to the Big West meet, Kemar Marsden false started and will take the third-best time in the conference this season (10.58) into the championships.
The Matador men also looked for additional entrants into the 200 meters with Marsden, Khalid Jones and Kenneth Stone already qualifiers. Senior Michael Woodham qualified at UCI running 21.97 while Thomas Henry narrowly missed at 22.04. Northridge could not gain additional qualifiers in the 400 or 800 meters or improve on season-bests in either the 110 or 400 meter hurdles.
Julio Mora did post a season-best in the 3,000 meter steeplechase afetr clocking a time of 10:39.57.
In the throws, Tucker Weathers, already a conference qualifier in the shot put aand hammer, reached qualifying standards in the discus with a season-best mark of 164-0 (50.00). Gavin Fallen, who already had a qualifying mark, improved on his season-bets with a toss of 160-4 (48.87). Weathers also improved his mark in the hammer with a best of 187-10 (57.26) while Jose Avlies also improved with a season-best hammer throw of 166-7 (50.77).
For the Northridge women, Briana Davis matched the Matador season-best in the 100 meters clocking a time of 11.98 which currently ranks fifth in the Big West. Davis' time matched Precious Watkins' time at the Mt. SAC Relays last week. Le'Shel Vines and Samantha Dirks both have qualifying times in the 100 meters but did not improve those times at UCI.
In the 200 meters, Jackie Harrison ran a blistering season-best of 24.55 to post the sixth-best time in the conference this season. Harrison was followed by Watkins who also qualified at 24.73 and Jasmine Cox at 25.07. Cox also clocked a season-best in the 400 meters, running 54.69, third-best in the Big West. Northridge now has three of the top-six times in the 400 heading into the conference championships.
In the distance events, Vanessa Carr got under qualifying standards in the 800 meters after running a season-best 2:16.14 while Ana Rosales and LeGia Pendergraph both got under the threshhold in the 1,500 meters. Rosales, who already had a qualifying time of 4:40.62, ran a season-best 4:35.63 while Pendergraph clocked a season-best time of 4:39.83.
In the field events, Jenna Hulion matched her season-best height in the pole vault after clearing 11-7.75 (3.55). Hulion has now reached the height four times this season. In the long jump, Ese Ntekume posted the fourth-best mark in the conference this season after recording a season-best 18-11.75 (5.78) thie third-best mark at the UCI meet. Stella Dugall also bettered her previous best this season with a leap of 18-10.75 (5.76) which was three spots behind Ntekume.
In the throws, Mariah Counts narrowly missed qualifying in the discus after posting a season-best 138-6 (42.21) while Jamila McIntosh matched her season-best and conference qualifying mark of 160-4 (48.87) in the hammer. Julienne Lewis-Sidqe also had an improvement in the hammer with a top throw of 149-5 (45.55). Claire Morgan then made it two Northridge qualifiers in the javelin as she reached the conference standard with a season-best mark of 118-7 (36.15).
The Multi-Events portion of the Big West Championships will get underway this