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SDSU Track and Field to Compete at Claremont Classic in Final Tune-Up for MWC Meet

The Aztecs are set to compete at the Claremont Classic on Saturday.
The Aztecs are set to compete at the Claremont Classic on Saturday.

May 2, 2007

SAN DIEGO -

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SDSU Track and Field to Compete at Claremont Classic in Final Tune-Up for MWC Meet
San Diego State will make its final preparations for the Mountain West Conference Championships when it travels to compete at the Claremont Classic on Saturday, May 5, in Claremont, Calif., beginning at 4 p.m. PDT. The Classic will be the Aztecs' last chance to tune up for the MWC meet that will take place May 9-12 at SDSU Sports Deck.

Last week, the Aztecs traveled to Berkeley, Calif., for the California Collegiate Challenge and enjoyed a successful trip as Decontee Kaye broke the school record in the triple jump and 10 NCAA regional qualifying standards were eclipsed. Select Aztecs also competed in the Asics/Steve Scott Invitational in Irvine, Calif., to round out the weekend.

Next week, San Diego State will play host to the MWC Championships at SDSU Sports Deck where the league's men's and women's teams will convene and vie for the conference's outdoor track and field title.

Healthy Competition
Last season, Decontee Kaye tied an 18-year old school record with her leap of 41 feet, 9.75 inches in the triple jump as a freshman at the Duke Invitational. Unfortunately for Kaye, Karoline Koehler arrived on campus and broke her record with her 41-11.50 performance at the Cal-Nevada Championships in March. However this past weekend, Kaye, a native of Hayward, Calif., returned home to the Bay Area and reclaimed her spot atop the SDSU all-time performance list by jumping 42-3.50 en route to winning the event. Not to be outdone, Koehler finished second with a distance of 42-2.75, despite competing in a -2.3 tail wind.

The Shana and Sherraine Show
Sprinters Shana Solomon and Sherraine Pencil have turned it on as the season approaches the finish line. At the California Collegiate Challenge, both qualified for the 100-meter dash finals and earned themselves spots at the NCAA West Regional meet in May. Solomon finished 5th in the race with a personal-best effort of 11.69 seconds, while Pencil crossed the finish line in 11.75 (7th), which was also a personal best. For Solomon, her performance in Berkeley marked the fifth straight meet in which she cut down her time from the previous week and for Pencil it was her second in a row. The pair represent San Diego State's only two regional qualifiers in the event.

Upuu Moving Up
Mandy Upuu continued her assault up San Diego State's all-time performance list last week in Northern California. The junior coming into the 2007 outdoor campaign was not on the 800 top-10 list, but now finds herself ranked third in program history. Upuu recorded a time of 2:06.56, while coming in second place at the California Collegiate Challenge and in the process, set a new personal record by more than two seconds. Regionally, Upuu ranks fourth in the West, 18th in the nation and first in the Mountain West. The last time she competed in the 800, Upuu established a PR of 2:08.77 at the Mt. SAC Relays before her record-setting effort on Saturday.

4x100 Relay Clicking
So far this season, the San Diego State 4x100 relay has qualified regionally for the NCAAs five times, including this past weekend in Berkeley, Calif., where it recorded a seasonal best clocking of 45.55. Of the five qualifying marks, three have been set by the quartet of Sherraine Pencil, Shana Solomon, Nicole Stone and Karoline Koehler. The foursome has proven to be a strong unit as they own the second-fastest time in the conference behind TCU and the 11th fastest in the West Region.

Last Year at the Claremont Classic
In 2006, San Diego State was led by seniors Erin Asay and Jamillah Titus, who recorded runner-up finishes in the pole vault and high jump, respectively, at the Claremont Classic at Burns Track and Field Complex on the campus of Claremont McKenna College.

Asay recorded an NCAA regional qualifying mark for the seventh time in her last eight outings with a clearance of 12-5.50, tying her for second place with unattached vaulter Brittani Bernhard. Dana Van Wagner followed in fourth with a height of 11-11.75, while Christin Shibley equaled her season best with a vault of 11-5.75 to finish in a seventh-place tie.

Meanwhile, Titus posted a leap of 5-4.50 in her event to tie Shannon Toliver of UC Riverside, but had to settle for second based on the number of attempts at that mark.

Other highlights for San Diego State on Saturday included season-best performances from Anne Vieira in the 3,000 (second - 11:38.23) and Michele Dannhausen in the javelin (sixth - 122-10).