Success found in ULV track

Laura Czingula, Sports Editor
Laura Czingula, Sports Editor

All good things must come to an end. That may be true for somethings but not for the University of La Verne track team, who has had continued success throughout their season and brought home more than enough wins.

The ULV track team has taken La Verne and put it on the map once again. Sure we have had some great teams and some great athletes come in and out of this University, but lets face it, this year has not been the year for ULV sports.

Let’s look back into the past. This year in sports we have not been so hot. Look at the men’s soccer and cross country teams. Each finished seventh place in SCIAC. The men’s volleyball team did not have too many wins and what about the men and women’s tennis teams? Each team fell pretty low in the rankings. But what good is it anyway to do well on a team sport at ULV? A team does well, maybe not perfect, but well, and the SCIAC Division III committee totally overlooks them for playoffs anyway.

The point is that the ULV track team has bypassed the committee and given it no chance but to accept La Verne’s winning season and have them continue on with their success.

The track team is going up against schools not just in SCAIC, but Division I schools coming out on top and succeeding high.

Two weeks ago the team traveled to Northridge and competed in the Fourth Annual California, Nevada State Championships with NCAA and NAIA schools attending. Not only did they score high in all events, but they had individuals stand out in almost every event.

Junior Katrina Hall was one of the SCIAC athletes of the meet. She won the 100m hurdles and also placed in the high, long and triple jumps. Plus, she was on the winning 4×400 meter relay team and was the high point scorer among women with 32.5 points. I am glad she is on our team.

Other track stand-outs are seniors Jacqui Zwissler, Liron Wilson, Anthony Rice and Jason Neal, juniors Anthony Rudolph and Patrina Hall. And I know you have all heard of senior Socorro Gonzalez. She has broken record after record for shot put and the javelin throw, as has the whole team.

Every time I turn around I hear something about the ULV track team. Both men and women are setting their own records and breaking others. Just last weekend, Zwissler broke Gonzalez’ record in the javelin throw. They never stop succeeding, do they?

Out of the whole track team, 15 athletes have qualified for nationals from La Verne, which takes place in La Crosse, Wisc., May 21-24. Nine of those 15 had automatic qualifying marks because they beat SCIAC records.

That is unbelievable. Both the men’s and women’s 4x400m relay teams are going, as are both men’s and women’s 4x100m relay teams. Almost every athlete on each relay team has qualified for an individual event as well. Some schools do not even have one athlete qualify for a nationals spot , but La Verne has 15 athletes qualify. Now, that is impressive.

Compare that to last year when the track team had only the four men from the 4x100m relay team travel to nationals. The team consisted of Rice, Neal, Wilson, and junior Anthony Hayes. Zwissler was the sole female who traveled to nationals, qualifying for the triple jump. Hopefully this year, with half of the team qualifying, the support will be there and they will succeed and win each of their events.

I just wanted to take some time out and congratulate each of the individuals on the track team and the coaching staff for a wonderful season and to wish those who are going good luck at nationals. They deserve all the success that has come their way and much more.

So if a ULV track member walks by in the halls, take some time out of your day to congratulate that individual for all their hard work and great achievements, they deserve it. And after all, they are representing our school.

Laura Czingula, a junior journalism major, is sports editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at czingula@ulvacs.ulaverne.edu.

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