The UC Riverside track and field team got its season underway this week as the teams competed in their first indoors competition at the UW Invitational in Seattle, WA. It proved to be a great trip for the Highlanders as they had a total of four school records broken and a number of career-best performances.
On the men’s side, Highlander Michael Koger ran the 400m event with a time of 48.87 to break the original school record. Koger finished sixth overall in the race. Sean Ferrera came in first at the 400m race with a time of 49.48, while teammate Kenny Grimble came in second in his 400m heat.
The relay team of Guenther, Bryan Adams, Sean Ferrera and anchor Michael Koger ran the 4x400m and won the event, edging out the host Washington. The team established a new school record with a time of 3:14.64, breaking the old record of 3:15.95. Highlander Hernel Dyer placed third overall in the men’s 60m, posting the same time of 6.92s in the preliminaries and final rounds. His time was .02s away from the school record. Dyer also took part in the 200m competition where he took third place and teammate Jerome Rideaux placed tenth. Tatal Khan placed second with a time of 14:49.89 in the 500m, while Benjamin Heck came in fifth with a time of 14:59.93.
In the men’s field events, Travis Smith set a new school record in the shot put with a throw of 16.68m. Caleb Stuart also set a new record, breaking his record in the process as he threw 19.00m in the weight throw. In the triple jump, Ryan Swafford came up a quarter of an inch short of breaking the school record of 49′ 4.50″. Swafford finished second in the event.
On the women’s side, Danielle Littleton came in seventh in 60m hurdles with a time of 8.84. Raquel Heflin came in first overall in the 3,000m race as she posted a time of 9:38.77, which was the third best time in school history. Damajeria DuBose came in third place with a time of 9:56.34 in her 3,000m heat, while Alisha Brown came in fourth in her 3,000m heat with a time of 9:56.52. In the 5,000 meter race, Jaasmin Pina finished in ninth place with a time of 17:19.81, while Katy Daly ran a career-best of 17:23.46, which was good for 11th place.
In the women’s field events, Ashley Gatewood threw for 43′ 7.25″ in the shot put. Gatewood also posted a 54′ 1.25″ distance mark in the weight throw. Nikki James threw for 50′ 5.25″ and placed first in her weight throw flight, while Deja Watkins threw for 47′ 3.0″ in the same flight and placed second. This was Watkins first meet of her collegiate career. In the triple jump, Jacquelyn DuBois placed fifth in her flight with a mark of 11.46m.
The UCR track and field team will be back in action on Feb. 11 when they travel back to the state of Washington to compete in the Husky Classic.