Track and field finds early success during the winter interim

by Mark Cui | 1/3/16 9:17pm

On Dec. 12, Dartmouth’s track and field team competed at the seventh annual Jay Carisella Track and Field Invitational hosted by Northeastern University.

The Big Green’s women’s team secured second place with 157 points, behind only the host team Northeastern’s 207.5 points. The men's team finished in fifth place with a score of 83, falling to the University of New Hampshire’s 189, Northeastern’s 150.5, University of Massachusetts Lowell’s 90 and Sacred Heart University’s 89.5.

A total of 17 schools — Dartmouth, American International College, Emmanuel College, Fitchburg State University, University of Hartford, College of the Holy Cross, Keene State College, Lasell College, Merrimack College, New England College, New Hampshire, Rhode Island College, Sacred Heart, University of Massachusetts Boston and UMass Lowell — competed in the tournament, which took place in the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Boston, Mass.

“We have been working very hard in the fall practices and it was great to see the results carry over in the meet,” coach Barry Harwick said. “It’s a very good sign for the season to come.”

On the women’s side, Kaitlin Whitehorn ’16 and Jennifer Meech ’16 both set new meet records as they took first-place in their respective events.

Whitehorn won the 60-meter with a time of 7.47, while Meech came out victorious in the 200-meter in 24.63. Meech also won the 400-meter race in 55.56, setting another meet record and outpacing second place by nearly two full seconds. Though she didn’t set another meet record, Whitehorn added another event title to her amazing day by winning the high jump with a 5-7.0/1.70m on her third attempt.

“They are definitely two of our top athletes coming into the season. They have been contributors in scoring to our championships throughout their career here,” coach Sandy Ford-Centonze said. “They are two people we really depend on and they really drive hard and put it all out there. It’s exciting especially because they are both seniors.”

In addition to Whitehorn and Meech, Molly Shapiro ’16 added on to the women team’s record-breaking day with a 39-7.25/12.07m performance to win the triple jump event and set a meet record for the event.The rest of the women’s team also performed extraordinarily. Sara Kikut ’16 competed in the 60-meter, finishing second only to teammate Whitehorn, with a 7.64. Nicole DeBlasio ’19 finished fourth in the 200-meter event, with a time of 25.91.

In the 800-meter event, Abby Livingston ’18 (2:11.86) came out on top, followed by Bridget Flynn ’18 (2:12.33), Aliyah Gallup ’17 (2:15.92), and Alexa Jennings ’19 (2:20.56) in second, third and fifth, respectively.

On the men’s side, Sam Siegel ’19 impressively cleared 14-9.0/4.50m on his second attempt to give Dartmouth a win in the men’s pole vault event. In the triple jump event, Corey Muggler ’17 scored an astounding 45-10.75/13.99m on his sixth and final jump to take the title.

On his approach to the triple jump, Muggler said, “My mindset going into any jump is just to stay confident, try to visualize before I start my run-up down the runway, visualize a big jump every time and to just go for it.”

Another impressive individual performance came from Alec Eschholz ’19, who claimed third place in the finals of the 60 meter hurdles. Alex Frye ’17 and Daniel Katz ’16 followed behind, taking sixth and seventh place respectively. Frye also received fourth place in the high jump event with a 6-4.0/1.93m. Rounding out the scoring for the Big Green, Zachary Plante ’18 (50.77) and Edward Wagner ’16 (51.7) finished fourth and sixth, respectively, in the 400-meter event. In the 200-meter event, Wagner finished sixth while Plante finished eighth with respective times of 22.89 and 22.97. Jules Hislop ’17 finished fifth in the 500-meter event with 1:07.45, while Kevin Stanko ’16 secured third in the 800-meter event with a 1:57.95.

Before the Dec. 12 meet, the men and women’s track and field team had begun their indoor campaign on Dec. 5 at the Boston University season opener. Though the event was non-scoring, both the men and women teams performed well. Ford-Centonze noted that the meets, practices, and hiking trips have helped build team chemistry.

Harwick agreed, adding that, “Although this is one our larger first-year classes, the team chemistry has been great. It’s a great and eclectic group. They’re very supportive of each other.”

With great individual performances across the board, the team looks forward to their upcoming meets.

“It has been an encouraging start of the year,” Muggler said. “There have been a lot of great performances out of the team, and we are excited and looking forward to the rest of the season.”

After a few weeks of rest, the team will move on to its next challenge at the Dartmouth Relays in Hanover, N.H. from Jan. 8 to Jan. 10.