Dropped Baton Dooms Men's Track & Field Team At Oregon
April 18, 2009
A botched handoff on the final leg of the 4x400m relay doomed the No. 16 men's track and field team as they fell to No. 1 Oregon 84-79 in a classic dual meet in Eugene.
Oregon looked to have a meet victory in hand, but the Bruins made a late push with sweeps in the discus and triple jump to tie the meet at 79 all heading into the final event of the day, the 4x400m relay. Oregon got off to a strong start, but the Bruins hung in there through each hand off of the baton. Heading into the final handoff, Oregon passed the baton just moments before UCLA, but a botched handoff between Stan Griffin and Karlton Rolle knocked UCLA out of contention, giving Oregon the dual meet win.
During the meet, the Bruins posted sweeps in the shot put, discus, triple jump and 200m, as well as victories in eight events.
Senior All-American Boldizsar Kocsor started the Bruins off in the win column as he threw a season-best and improved regional qualifier of 213-11 in the hammer to win.
Sophomore Taylor Hobson added a big win in the high jump as he cleared a lifetime-best and improved regional mark of 7-1. Hobson also had a career day in the long jump as he posted a new lifetime-best of 25-2.50, placing second overall. Both his long and high jump marks rank amongst the top-10 in the NCAA this season and were improved regional qualifiers. Hobson added another career-best in the triple jump as he finished second with a mark of 48-10.75.
Rolle led a UCLA sweep in the 200m as all top three finishers ran season-bests and regional qualifying marks. Rolle was first in 21.20, followed by junior Brandon Smith (21.27) and freshman Jamal Alston (21.33).
In the shot put, sophomore Bo Taylor led the way with a regional qualifying toss of 57-6.25. Sophomore Nick Robinson was second (56-5.75) and freshman Mark Weber was third (53-6.50). Freshman Thomas Nagengast led a Bruin sweep in the discus with a throw of 167-8. Robinson finished second (162-2), while Weber placed third (160-11).
The 4x100m relay team of junior Stan Griffin, Rolle, Alston and Smith won in a time of 40.39. Alston was second in the 100m with a season-best 10.60, while Rolle was third in a time of 10.66.
UCLA Event-by-Event Results
110m Hurdles - 5. Brian Law, 14.97
4x100m Relay - 1. Griffin, Rolle, Alston, Smith - 40.39 (RQ)
4x400m Relay - Powell, Wells, Griffin, Rolle - 3:19.78 (dropped baton on final handoff)
Hammer - 1. Boldizsar Kocsor, 213-11/65.20m (RQ)
Javelin - 4. Andreas Drbal, 188-0/57.30m