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Davis, California

Sunday, March 3, 2024

Onyewuenyi breaks shot put record, qualifies for regionals

Chid Onyewuenyi highlighted the UC Davis last home meet of the season by dominating the shot put competition at the Woody Wilson Classic.

The junior threw 14.60m to second place’s 13.65m, crushing the regional qualifying mark and setting a new school recorda fact she didn’t become aware of until about 30 minutes later.

“When I threw it [the 14.60m on her third of six attempts], it seemed like it went far,Onyewuenyi said.But when the official announced the mark, I heard ‘14.06m. So on my last throw, I tried to go for it and threw 14.32m. I thought that the 14.32m that I threw was my best, but the official was like,No, you had a better throw at 14.60m.

“So I didn’t know that I had already gotten the regional mark and school record before that throw.

Onyewuenyi already qualified for regionals in the hammer throw last month with a school-record 55.92m.

“My goal was to get the two records this season and get to regionals in both,Onyewuenyi said.The next step is to place in the top three in both events at conference. The goal for the rest of the season is to keep doing what I’m doing and hope that I continue to PR [set personal records].

While that was the only field-event win, the Aggies took home six wins on the track, including the first two individual events.

Freshman Anna Smidebush, making her debut in the 5,000m on the track, started it off by winning the 5,000m section B race in 18:18.42.

Junior Ali Stoakley then had a convincing win in the steeplechase, clocking 10:59.13, while sophomore Caitlin Fitzgerald finished second in 11:06.35.

Senior Sirena Williams dominated the 100m hurdles, as she clocked 14.04 despite running against a 1.5 meter-per-second headwind. Her time was over three-tenths of a second ahead of second place and gives her the top five 100m hurdle times of the season for the Aggies.

The last individual win came in the 400m where junior Ugo Eke clocked 56.76 in her first race back from injury.

“Getting Ugo back, we tried everything workout wise,said coach Deanne Vochatzer. “[Friday] was the first time she did anything around the curve. We tried back-to-back hundreds, sent her to the overpass to do repeats there, so we’re really pleased for her to run 56.

The Aggies also won both the 4x100m and the 4x400m relays to cap a solid meet. The 4x100m team ran 47.60 to pick up the first win in that event of the season, while the 4x400m had a huge season-best of 3:51.33.

“There we some good things and some bad things,Vochatzer said.But overall, for what we needed at this meet, I was very pleased.

ALEX WOLF-ROOT can be reached at sports@theaggie.org. 


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