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Davis, California

Monday, May 27, 2024

UC Davis sets new records and claims medals at the Big West Championships

Chelsea Daye and Brianna Weidler win first place in respective events at conference meet


By MEGAN JOSEPH — sports@theaggie.org


One of the largest championship meets in the season came to an end on May 13. This year’s Big West track and field Championships meet consisted of two weekends of competition, May 5-6 and May 12-13. The first weekend of the championship consisted of the heptathlon (seven-event race) and decathlon (10-event race) multi-event contests that included highlights from Aggie second-years Ryan Ishibashi and Jayme Henderickson. 

Ishibashi was a strong competitor in all of the events in the men’s decathlon but showed his true abilities in the pole vaulting portion. Ishibashi vaulted 4.61 meters or 15 feet and 1.5 inches, earning him second place among all of the male decathlon pole vaulters. Henderickson, who competed in all seven of the women’s heptathlon events, jumped an astonishing 1.61 meters, or 5 feet and 3.25 inches, in the high-jump event. The UC Davis’s track and field team left the meet with many new records, awards and stats. 

One of the largest and strongest wins from the meet came during the second weekend, from fourth-year Chelsea Daye. Daye was producing strong stats all season in her events, but more importantly, she had one of her best performances over the weekend, taking the win in the women’s long jump competition. Daye jumped 19 feet and 11.50 inches, or 6.08 meters, which was the longest jump of the day. The jump was her second attempt of the day and was a personal record for the senior. The new record gives Daye the title for the fourth-longest jump of all time in the UC Davis track and field program. On top of that, Daye was named “Student-Athlete of the Week” by UC Davis for her incredible performance. 

Daye became the first Aggie to take home the gold in the tournament. She was followed later in the competition by second-year Brianna Weidler, who ran a 16-minute-and-9.74-second 5000-meter race. Right behind her was third-year Sierra Atkins, who ran a 16-minute-and-16.45-second race that earned her the silver medal. Atkins was the previous reigning 5000-meter champion with the school record for the indoor 5,000-meter she obtained earlier this season, but her best event of the day came in the women’s 10,000-meter run.  

Atkins, who had never raced in the 10,000 meter at a collegiate level before, ran a 33-minute-and-52.59-second race that broke the previous school record. The Santa Rosa native had a historic meet and set a record that will be hard to beat for the upcoming years.

The long jump competition wasn’t the only jumping event to see an outstanding performance by the Aggies. Second-year Lauren Spellman jumped 5 feet and 5.25 inches, or 1.66 meters, which earned her third place. Her teammates third-year Sierra Meier and first-year Elizabeth Churchil also performed well. Meier tied for fourth place with another competitor, and Churchil, who actually tied Spellman’s distance at 5 feet and 5.25 inches, placed sixth due to using more attempts at previous heights. 

Other important performances came from third-years Joseph Monti and Corey Moore in the men’s 400-meter hurdles and men’s discus throw respectively. Monti ran an astounding 53.45-second race in the preliminaries, beating his previous personal record of 53.72 seconds. This earned him a spot in the final, where he ran a 53.95 which resulted in sixth place overall.

Moore, like Monti, also beat his previous personal record at the championship by throwing 181 feet and 10 inches, or 55.43 meters. This earned Moore 3rd place in the event and established him as a prominent athlete to look out for in future competitions.

Overall, the Aggies had a very successful meet, producing many wins and accomplishments. UC Davis will look to replicate their success going into next season as the program looks to continue the upward trend. 

Written by: Megan Joseph — sports@theaggie.org