NORTHRIDGE, Calif. – The pressure of competing in his first collegiate decathlon did not stop freshman and Bakersfield native Nick Zandes from putting on a show for CSU Bakersfield in the event on Friday. Zandes, a Stockdale High School graduate, finished second overall at the Northridge Invitational with a score of 6,402 points, the third-best mark all-time for the Roadrunners and the best score since 2001.
“Nick got out to a good start with a solid Day 1,” said Marcia Mansur-Wentworth, Director of Track at CSUB. “He finished strong on Day 2 for what was a great outing. I am so proud of Nick.”
Zandes opened the decathlon with a time of 11.64 in the 100m dash. The mark earned Bakersfield’s freshman 723 points, his highest individual event score of the day. The former Mustang went on to post a distance of 20-09.00 in the long jump, improving his collegiate best by almost eight inches.
In the shot put, Zandes recorded a best throw of 39-11.25 before clearing 5-09.25 in the high jump. In the final event of the day, the freshman crossed the line in 52.83 seconds in the 400m dash.
At the end of the first day of competition, Zandes sat in fifth place out of eight student-athletes. Zandes’ Day 1 score of 3223 set him on pace to join CSUB’s Top 5 all-time list in the event.
While individual event results were not made available on Friday, Zandes’ final score of 6,402 points is the third-best score in CSUB’s decathlon history. The freshman sits a few hundred points behind Josh Canales (6,758, 2001) and less than a thousand points behind the CSUB record holder, Bret Selby (7,233, 1983). In just his decathlon debut, Zandes has a high ceiling and four years to keep chipping away at the 34-year-old record.
On Saturday, the rest of the Roadrunners will join the competition in Northridge. CSU Bakersfield will tackle a full day of track and field events for both the men and women. A full recap and results will be posted here Saturday night.