The UCR men’s track and field team participated in the Big West Championship hosted by UC Irvine. The event began at 10 a.m. on Thursday, May 12, and ended on Saturday, May 15, at 4:45 p.m., which included preliminary and final rounds throughout the few days. Although the team showed signs of excellence throughout the season and in the championship event, UCR finished second to last in the Big West Championship.
On Thursday, sophomore John Ober III threw an impressive 59.35m for the men’s javelin throw, which ranked him number four in the category. For the 400 meter men’s preliminary hurdles, junior Quinn Williams finished with a time of 55.13 seconds, but it wasn’t enough to advance him into the final round. For the 10,000 distance men’s final run, senior Arman Irani ran with a time of 32:17.28, which placed him fifth in the category.
On Friday, freshman Cameron Lewis leaped for 6.95 meters in the men’s final long jump, which ranked him ninth in the category. In the men’s 110 meter preliminary hurdles, freshman Martin Billings finished with a time of 15.05 seconds and freshman Joshua Lee finished with a time of 15.58 seconds. However, both freshmans were unable to qualify for the final round. In the men’s 800 meter preliminary run, freshman Andrew Jackson ran a blazing 1:54.17, which placed him second in the category and a nod in the final round. Freshman Zachary Cadima on the other hand, did not get so lucky and finished 12th in the category with a time of 1:59.43, which prevented him from qualifying into the final round.
On Saturday, junior Brian Nnoli leaped for a total of 14.68 meters in the men’s final triple jump, which placed him sixth in the category. In the men’s final 800 meter run, Jackson finished with a time of 1:52.89, which was faster than his preliminary run, but it was not enough as he finished seventh place in the category. In the men’s 5,000 meter run, Irani ran a time of 14:14.98, which placed him third in the category. In the men’s 1,600 meter relay, Williams, Jackson, Cadima, freshman Cameron Harris, junior Ryan Ayale, Lee, and Billings all participated in the relay. However, they finished dead last with a time of 3:22.31.
Overall, UCR finished with a total score of 22 points, which placed them eighth out of the nine teams that participated in the event. California State University, Fullerton became the champion in the Big West Championship with a total score of 163 points. Irani led the Highlanders with a total score of 10 points, 6 points from the 5,000 meter run and 4 points from the 10,000 meter run. Ober III chipped in with a total score of 5 points, which came from his performance in the javelin throw. Even though the Highlanders finished with a low score, there were multiple events that UCR did not participate in, contributing to their low score of 22 points.