St. Francis senior thrower and Elk Grove resident Kayla O’Brine has verbally committed to attend UC Santa Barbara on a track and field scholarship.
“It is pretty relieving,” said O’Brine. “I think I will have a great time with this opportunity.”
UCSB is led by head coach Pete Dolan and the throws are coached by Cody Fleming. The Gauchos finished second at the Big West outdoor Championships in 2013.
“They are very encouraging and supporting,” said O’Brine. “I really like the coach and I think I will develop a lot as a thrower at Santa Barbara.”
|St. Francis' Kayla O'Brine|
O’Brine has personal-bests of 145-6 in the hammer, 139-0 in the discus and 35-8.25 in the shot put. She has won three Delta River League individual titles, including the shot put title in 2011 and discus in both 2012 and 2013. She placed 12th in the state at the CIF State Championships in the discus and third in the hammer at the California State Hammer Championships in 2013.
“I hope to improve all of my marks and go to the state meet for discus and as far as I can in the shot put,” said O’Brine.
O’Brine started throwing in elementary school at St. Elizabeth before moving to Holy Spirit in the seventh grade.
“I didn’t want to run during practice so I picked up the shot put and started throwing it around,” said O’Brine. “It progressed from there.”
She is excited about every aspect of UC Santa Barbara.
“It is on the beach and is a beautiful campus,” said O’Brine. “I will get a great education.”
O’Brine plans to major in political science.
She joins volleyball players Megan Sullivan and Noa Nightingale as UCSB signees to compete for the Gaucho program this fall.
“We are all excited to go to UCSB together and support each other in our sports,” said O’Brine. “Hopefully, I will see them around a lot.”
O’Brine is among a talented St. Francis senior class that boasts 19 student-athletes who have made verbal college athletic commitments or signed a National Letter-of-Intent last fall. She is the second member of the St. Francis track and field program to commit, joining distance standout Madison Rawson (Ole Miss).
O’Brine can officially sign with UCSB on Wednesday, Feb. 5.