Redlands Track & Field Tops CMS and Cal Lutheran in SCIAC Opener

Photo credit: Beth Doolittle
Photo credit: Beth Doolittle
The University of Redlands men's and women's track & field teams enjoyed the comforts of competing at home on Ashel Cunningham Track in Ted Runner Stadium on Saturday during the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Multi-Dual No. 1.  Despite the damp conditions, the Bulldogs were on fire and captured wins over Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges and Cal Lutheran University.  
The Bulldog women won seven out of 11 races on the track and prevailed in three of the field events to secure a 100-63 decision over the Athenas and a 119-43 result against the Regals. While taking first place in 11 total events, the Redlands men edged the Stags, 85-78, and rolled to a 120-40 win over the Kingsmen.
For the women, first-years Annick Bangou (Redlands, CA) and Courtney O'Neal (Shingle Sprints, CA) finished 1-2 in the 100 Meters with respective times of 13.04 and 13.05 in a remarkable race.  The duo also shined in the 200 Meters, with Bangou unleashing a first-place time of 26.50 and O'Neal registering a third-place mark of 26.70.  In addition, sophomore Hannah Albrecht (Cottage Grove, OR) provided a time of 26.51 to secure the Bulldog sweep.
Albrecht also impressed in the 400 with her winning time of 59.53, while first-year Ani Nitta (Wailuku, HI) crossed the finish line in 1:03.52 for third.
Junior Jessica Fields (Las Vegas, NV) won both hurdle events to head up the Bulldogs' strong showing.  She fired off a blistering time of 15.02 in the 100 Hurdles before taking home the gold in the 400 Hurdles with a time of 1:05.11.  Junior Chyenne Kimble (Big Bear Lake, CA) added a second-place performance in the shorter race by closely following Fields in 15.18.  Senior Kara Romani (Sacramento, CA) completed another Bulldog sweep with a third-place time of 16.04.  In addition, Romani ran the 400 Hurdles in a third-place time of 1:09.22.
Redlands' relays lit up the track with their speedy times as well.  The 4x100 Relay of O'Neal, Bangou, Albrecht, and Kimble completed the quick loop in 48.13 for a 2.27-second differential over the runners-up.  Albrecht, Fields, Kimble, and sophomore Desiree Cadena (San Jose, CA) picked up another first-place showing in the 4x400 Relay with their outstanding time of 4:11.62, which was more than four seconds ahead of second place.
In the field events, Romani won the Long Jump with a leap of 17' 8", while graduate student Reyna Ta'amu (Lakewood, CA) won the Shot Put and Discus Throw.  She threw the shot put a distance of 46' 6 ¾", which was more than 10 feet better than second place.  Her mark of 119' 11" in the Discus registered as a career-best effort.
The men's results mirrored the women's and included eight wins on the track and three among the field events.  
Senior Luke Bohlinger (Mercer Island, WA) topped the competition in the 100 and 200 Meters with respective times of 11.04 and 22.61.  Junior Maliq Champion (Beaumont, CA) joined him in both races with his second-place times of 11.10 and 22.67.  Finally, sophomore Cooper Malerstein (Huntington Beach, CA) completed the Bulldog sweep in the 100 by crossing the finish line in 11.31 for a career-best effort. 
Sophomore Tucker Cargile (Denver, CO) continued his recent success in indoor track with Saturday's outdoor results.  He won the 800 Meters in 1:58.68 and captured the gold in the 1500 with a career-best time of 3:56.40.  
Senior Nick Burchett (Gold River, CA) won the 400 Hurdles by completing the race in 56.72, while senior Joseph Esparza (Arcata, CA) uncorked a winning time of 9:36.96 in the 3000 Steeplechase.
Redlands excelled in the relays and won them both in impressive fashion.  The 4x100 quartet of Bohlinger, Champion, sophomore Anthony Razo (Pomona, CA), and sophomore Marvin Perkins Jr. (Las Vegas, NV) crossed the finish line first with a time of 41.92.  Burchett, junior Jordan Washecheck (Tulsa, OK), Cargile, and junior Tyler Lufkin (Yucaipa, CA) ran a blistering time of 3:23.08 in the 4x400 Relay for a 6.23-second cushion ahead of second place.
Among the field events, senior Matthew Hayashi (Hacienda Heights, CA) won the Shot Put with a heave of 45' 9 ¼" and finished second in the Discus Throw with a mark of 123' 8".  Sophomore MJ Wheeler (St. Louis, MO) and Champion combined to win two of the jumps, as Wheeler supplied a first-place mark of 20' 10 ½" in the Long Jump and Champion cleared a gold-medal height of 6' 2 ¾" in the High Jump.
The Bulldog men's and women's track & field teams look forward to Sunday's official announcement of the qualifiers for the NCAA Division III Indoor Championships.  In addition, Redlands heads to the Oxy Distance Carnival and Sprint Festival on Saturday, March 9, at 4 p.m. in Eagle Rock.