On a damp, cold afternoon in Claremont, the University of La Verne men’s track team was able to hold their own and finish several events in the top of the standings.
The team entered the event going head-to-head against several schools.
“It was all basically perfect handoffs during the event,” said junior Melvin Ward.
“We all wanted to win but we wanted to get out there and get perfect hand offs throughout the relay,” he said.
Junior Darnell Gilbert proved to be the highlight of the day as he secured a win in the 100-meter dash by finishing 11.06 seconds against the next closest competitor.
Gilbert did not end there as he also competed in 200-meter dash finishing in 22.62 seconds, good enough for second in the event.
Gilbert also proved to be instrumental as the anchorman in a dramatic win for the 4 x 100 -meter relay as La Verne finished in first place in the event.
The win translated into the next event where Gilbert once again led a team composed of senior Dustin Elliott, juniors Dwayne Griffiths and Melvin Ward to a third place finish in the 4 x 400-meter relay.
University athlete Isaac Grentzbach finished the hammer throw in second place with a distance of 135-3.
Other field athletes such as Dennis Parr and Gabriel Garcia also competed in the discus throws events against several other schools.
Weather conditions were a major factor for track and field athletes throughout the meet as they were forced to stay warm and loose to compete when called upon.
Overall the men’s track and field team took eighth in the Claremont Multi-Dual competition, on part of strong showings in track and field events.
“We are still not at full capacity,” said Elliott, a sprinter and javelin athlete.
“Exchanges can always be worked on and practice makes perfect so we all need to work to be perfect,” he said.
The La Verne women’s track team also held their Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference multi-dual meet on April 1, where they also competed on the campus of Pomona-Pitzer in Claremont.
In the field events, the Leopards came in first in the hammer, javelin and pole vault competitions.
Junior Chelsea Sherier finished on top of the standings in the pole vault event, while senior thrower Erica Pemberton came out victorious once again in the hammer event.
Veronica Andrews continued to exert dominance and came out victorious in the javelin competition in addition to wins in her last two performances including the La Verne invitational.
ULV women competed at a high level in their performance in the 4x100-meter relay.
A relay team consisting of seniors Deonne McLean, Krystle Luckey, Kristine Stokes and freshman Brianna Gonzales finished the competition with their best time of the season of 49.50.
The season best performance by the relay team provided the Leopards with their only win on the track events.
Ultimately the women’s team fell short and finished in second place in the standings during the multi-dual competition.
“In order for us to win SCIAC, we need to step up as a team and do events we are not used to doing,” McLean said.
“We have a smaller team this year compared to last season, but we are still strong enough to compete and win,” McLean added.
Both teams will now travel to Azusa for their next meet, the Meet of Champions.
It will be held tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.
The ULV women will look to avenge their runner-up position in the upcoming meet.
On the other end, the men’s team continues to fight to improve and get back in the thick of things in conference play.
The men and women’s teams are anticipating improving performances with the Meets of Champions through strong performances tomorrow.
Galo Pesantes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.