iHeps15: Men’s Sprints & Hurdles

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Schedule:
Men’s 60m Dash, Semifinals – Saturday, 3:00pm | Finals – Sunday, 1:50pm
Men’s 200m Dash, Semifinals – Saturday, 4:45pm | Finals – Sunday, 2:50pm
Men’s 400m Dash, Semifinals – Saturday, 3:15pm | Finals – Sunday, 12:55pm
Men’s 500m Dash, Semifinals – Saturday, 3:30pm | Finals – Sunday, 1:25pm
Men’s 60m Hurdles, Semifinals – Saturday, 2:30pm | Finals – Sunday, 12:30pm

There are fresh new faces this year at the Heptagonals as most of last year’s scorers have either graduated or are no longer running. Freshmen Malcolm Johnson (Harvard) and Carrington Akosa (Princeton) have come in with the fastest times in the 60m and 200m this year.  Princeton’s John Hill is the top returner for the 60m and could win if the the freshmen falter. Princeton could have three scorers in the 60m as Dre Nelson is ranked 5th this year. Cornell’s Brailin Paulino may provide some points for the sprint group.  Harvard’s Matthew Hurst provides another freshman sensation, in addition to Johnson, to provide big points in the 200m in its inaugural appearance at the Heps. But the biggest points haul in this new event could be by Brown with Ryan Kelly, Brian Pfaff and Oluwatosin Oyewole (4th, 5th and 6th fastest times this year).

Only two athletes have run under 48 seconds this year in the 400m, Yale’s Marc-Andre Alexandre (47.91) and Brown’s Kelly (47.68). Alexandre is the top returner (2nd in the 2014) and has an indoor PR of 47.45 (9th all-time), so should be considered the favorite. The rest of the scorers should include Penn’s Tom Timmins, Cornell’s Michael Smith and Tobenna Attah. A pair of freshman, Penn’s Jeff Wiseman and Brown’s Zachary Emrich could also be in the mix, but the 500m may be more likely as they are both on top of the conference standings. Top returners for the 500m are Penn’s Drew Magaha (2nd), Cornell’s Max Hairston (3rd) and Princeton’s Ray Menin (6th), but they all have not contested this distance this year. Cornell’s Cisco Olloqui, last year’s 4th place finisher, should also pick up valuable points. As usual, this event is always full of surprise entrants, which makes predictions difficult.

The sole hurdle event should be a battle between Cornell and Princeton. The top three finishers at Heps last year are back and have the top three times this year. Cornell’s Hairston, the defending champion, is now the 3rd fastest Ivy Leaguer ever (7.88). Harvard’s Jarvis Harris has run 7.96, the 10th best conference time ever, and Princeton’s Greg Caldwell has a PR of 8.00. Throw in Princeton’s Rob Mohr with a lifetime best of 7.91 and Cornell’s Wynndham Curtis, last year’s 6th place finisher, this has the making of a competitive race.

– L. Kelsey Armstrong (Penn, ’95)
photo by Kevin Morris

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