Five Individual Wins for Sagehens at Quad Meet

The Pomona-Pitzer men’s and women’s track teams had a successful weekend at a SCIAC meet on Saturday, April 19, with five individuals winning their races and events in their final meet before the SCAIC Championships. P-P faced California Institute of Technology, California Lutheran University, and the University of La Verne in the quad meet. 

For the men, Chris Garnatz PO ’15 had a throw of 56.16 meters—184 feet, 3 inches—to take first place in the javelin, a new personal best that moves him to No. 10 in P-P history. Corey Purcella PO ’16 beat out teammate Parker Head PO ’17 to finish first in the steeplechase with a time of 9:55.68. Both Purcella and Head broke the 10-minute barrier. Bennett Kopperud PZ ’16 won the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 55.53 seconds, and finished fourth in the 110-meter race with a time of 12.29 seconds. Kopperud said that with a week’s worth of training before their next meet, there is still room to grow before next weekend’s SCIAC Championships, and he is looking to improve on his own time.

“My race was a PR (personal record), but it still felt like I could have been a lot smoother through the race, so I have high hopes for greater improvement at SCIACs,” Kopperud said. 

Ben Girodias PO ’15 finished second in the 1,500-meter race with a time of 4:02.61. On the night of Thursday, April 17—only two days before the SCIAC meet—Girodias ran the 10-kilometer at the Mt. Sac Relays and finished with a time of 30:31, a new personal best and the fourth-fastest in P-P history. In the 1,500, Girodias was followed by teammates Adam Hathaway PO ’17 and Michael Cork PO ’16, who finished second and third, respectively. Titus Van Hook PO ’15 finished fourth in the 100-meter with a time of 11.14 seconds and also finished second in the 200-meter race with a time of 22.39 seconds. Charlie Watson PO ’17 finished second in the 5-kilometer race with a time of 15:40.42. 

The women had two individual winners, as Rhea Jayachandran PZ ’16 won the 100-meter hurdles, and Ailene Nguyen PO ’16 finished first in the long jump. Jayachandran finished in 15.51 seconds in the 100-meter race, and also finished third in the 400-meter race with a time of 1:09.66. Nguyen cleared 18 feet (5.52 meters) in her first-place long jump finish, finished second in the triple jump with 36 feet, 3 inches (11.05 meters), and finished third in the 100-meter race with a time of 12.57 seconds.

Abby Gardner PO ’17 and Cassandra Owen PO ’14 finished second and third in the steeplechase with times of 12:27.53 and 12:37.76, respectively. Stassja Sichko PO ’15 finished second in the 800-meter race, finishing at 2:19.93. Alexandra Oxborough-Yankus PZ ’14 highlighted the field events with a fourth-place showing in the javelin throw. 

Heading into the SCIAC Championships this weekend, P-P is looking forward to continuing its success from both the men and women’s teams. Both teams were optimistic about their chances. 

“If everyone on the team preforms at their best, we should do very well at the championship meet,” Kopperud said. 

“For right now, the team just needs to focus on using the strength and endurance we’ve already developed and just continue what we’ve been doing to keep succeeding,” Nguyen said.

The Hens will compete at the SCIAC Championships May 2-3 at Occidental College. 

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