College Sports

College notebook: Cal Poly men’s basketball adds junior college transfer from Poland

The Cal Poly men’s basketball team announced Thursday that junior college transfer Kuba Niziol signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Mustangs next season.
The Cal Poly men’s basketball team announced Thursday that junior college transfer Kuba Niziol signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Mustangs next season. dmiddlecamp@thetribunenews.com

The Cal Poly men’s basketball team announced Thursday that junior college transfer Kuba Niziol signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Mustangs next season.

The 6-foot-7 forward from Wroclaw, Poland, spent last season at Howard College in Big Spring, Texas, where he averaged 9.7 points and 4.8 rebounds per game. Niziol shot 44.7 percent from the field and made 84.4 percent of his free throw attempts.

Niziol brings some international basketball experience to Cal Poly. He averaged 11.9 points and 3.9 rebounds per contest for Poland’s U-20 Men’s National Team during the 2015 FIBA Europe Under-20 Championship tournament in Italy.

“Kuba is an excellent shooter with a great understanding of the game,” head coach Joe Callero said in a news release. “His father (Piotr) was a long-time European professional and has prepared him well to be a Division I player. He’s proven an ability to adapt to the American game with a very strong year at Howard College.”

Callero said he envisions Niziol playing a mix of small forward and power forward when he arrives on campus for his sophomore season. His length will be a welcome addition to a Cal Poly team needing to replace senior forwards Brian Bennett and Joel Awich.

Mustangs send 11 to regionals

The Cal Poly track and field team will send an 11-person contingent to the NCAA West Preliminary Round hosted by Kansas next week at Rock Chalk Park.

The Mustangs advanced six men and five women into the regional round following a strong showing at the Big West Championships last week in Long Beach.

Senior distance runner Nick Woolf will lead the men, having won the 3,000-meter steeplechase and the 5,000 at the conference meet. He is scheduled to compete in the steeplechase Friday night and return for the 5,000 Saturday evening.

Also on the men’s side, seniors Devin Bennett and Alex Ziebart qualified in the javelin, and junior Arnie Sambel will compete in the discus. Junior Swarnjit Boyal also is entered in the 5,000.

The Cal Poly women will send freshmen Megan Mooney (javelin), Katie Izzo (1,500) and Peyton Bilo (5,000), sophomore Danielle Taylor (high jump) and senior Kendal Nielsen (triple jump) to the regional meet.

The top-12 finishers in each event will advance to the NCAA Championships held next month at Oregon’s Hayward Field.

Cougars ready for state meet

Eight athletes will represent the Cuesta College track and field team during the CCCAA State Track and Field Championship meet this weekend at San Diego Mesa College.

Coming off its first Western State Conference title in program history, the men will send five Cougars to the state meet. Former Arroyo Grande standout Joe Reeves, named the team’s most valuable athlete this spring, and Joe Dreyer both qualified in the pole vault.

Sean McDermott is scheduled to compete in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and the 5,000. Matt Tyler and Aaron Cheek will participate in the decathlon, and both are considered to be state championship contenders.

On the women’s side, Cuesta Female Athlete of the Year Augusta Thomason will look to defend her state title in the pole vault. The Texas A&M-bound Thomason hasn’t lost to a fellow community college jumper in her two years at Cuesta.

Atascadero High graduate Miranda Daschian is scheduled to compete in the 1,500, and Morro Bay alumnus Madeline Ogle qualified for state in the 5,000 and 10,000. According to a release from the school, Ogle plans to drop out of the 10,000 to focus on the 5,000.

Hyland among best in region

Cal Poly softball standout Sierra Hyland was named to the NFCA All-Region team Thursday, becoming the first Mustang in program history to receive that distinction three times in her career.

Hyland, who was sidelined with an injury early in the Big West Conference season, garnered first-team all-West Region honors at the utility/pitcher position. She led the conference with a 1.19 ERA and ranked second with 194 strikeouts, while also batting .336 with nine doubles, three home runs and 29 RBI.

The West Region consists of teams from the Big West, Pac-12, Mountain West, West Coast and Western Athletic Conferences.

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