March 14, 2009
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- In the blink of an eye, Barbara Nwaba became the new UCSB record-holder in the heptathlon.
After completing the long jump and javelin at the Sam Adams Combined, Nwaba needed to run 2:26.4 in the 800m to break the school record. She cut it close but got the job done, running 2:26.3 to score 4772 points.
"I actually told her she needed to run 2:22," remarked coach Josh Priester. "She had to run up front by herself, and did a great job attacking the event to score so high. This was her first heptathlon, and we couldn't have hoped for a better start."
The previous record of 4767 was set by Erika Bornhorst in 1996. Nwaba bettered the mark by five points, and also set a new personal best in the long jump en route to her meet victory.
Tayler Williams took second place with 4332 points, which places her at ninth all-time for UCSB. Her highlight event of the afternoon was the long jump, where she hit 17-11.75 (5.48m).
Christina Nowak's big day in the javelin throw (107-3, 32.71m) helped her amass 4278 points to take third. That score puts her at 10th on the all-time heptathlon list. Amanda Lee was fourth with 4217 points--a new personal best, and Maureen Ajoku was fifth at 3818.
Derek Masterson was the winner of the decathlon in his first collegiate competition, amassing 6463 points. His big events were the discus--where he set a personal best of 132-1 (40.27m), and the pole vault--where he cleared 14-9 (4.50m).
David Hoff took third place, breaking the 6000-point barrier despite having a sore ankle. His score was 6043. Nick deBeaubien was fourth at 5978, which included a Conference-qualifying javelin throw of 166-3 (50.67m).
Coach Keith Baker commented on the weekend's results.
"We had a first-time heptathlete set a school record, and a first-time decathlete win the meet and score well over 6000," Baker said. "It's very promising for this early in the season and this early in these athletes' careers."
Brian Beleue of Humboldt State--the leader after day one--placed second in the meet with 6257 points.
Next week the Gauchos travel to Los Angeles to compete at the USC Trojan Invitational.
-- UCSBgauchos.com --