Abandoning the Northeast cold, the men’s and women’s track and field teams spent their spring breaks training for a week in Southern California and wrapped up their Golden State trip over the weekend by competing at the UC-Irvine Spring Break Collegiate Classic.

In their first meet of the outdoor season, the Bulldogs faced competition from local schools, including UC-Irvine, Occidental, Cal Poly Pomona, and a somewhat more familiar opponent in Ivy League rival Cornell.

The men’s team delivered three first-place finishes, as well as several performances good enough for second and third places.

With his first-place finish in the pole vault, Eric DePalo ’10 experienced a bit of deja vu from Indoor Heps earlier this month, when he tied with Cornell’s Josh Kirkpatrick with a height of 5.00 meters, but had to settle for second place because of more misses from previous heights. But, this weekend, both sophomores tied for a first-place spot, hitting heights of 4.70 meters.

Also in the jumps, Reynolds Holmes ’10 had an initial jump of 7.13 meters in the long jump to land a first-place finish.

Rounding out the Eli top finishes, Victor Cheng ’08 (10.78 seconds) edged teammate Brandon Giles ’09 (10.86 seconds) to win the 100-meter dash.

The women’s team also earned top-three finishes in Irvine this weekend. Bailey Carroll ’10 finished second in the pole vault, and Jennifer Lin ’09 earned third in the 400-meter hurdles. The 4×400-meter relay also earned a third-place finish.

Returning to New Haven, the Bulldogs will continue their outdoor season Saturday at the Southern Connecticut State Invitational.