Wait For Outdoors Is Over

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After being all cooped up for a cold and snowy indoor season, many Ivy Leaguers decided to toss out great performances at various meets across the county. These performances include some alterations to the record books, including a new conference record in a freshman’s outdoor collegiate debut.

Raleigh Relays
It’s not even April and we have our first new conference record for the 2015 outdoor season. Down in Raleigh, N.C., Brown freshman Josie Natrasevschi had a great season debut, as she threw a new meet, school, and conference record in the discus throw. On her last throw of the competition, Natrasevschi threw 176-05 to surpass Michigan State freshman Katelyn Daniels’ 175-00 for the event win in cold, wet conditions. The mark bests the former conference record set last year by Harvard now-sophomore Nikki Okwelogu (174-10).

Brown had great showings in both the track and field events. Brown has four athletes now sitting at the top of the conference standings with their performances from this meet: Henry Tufnell in the 800m (1:52.25 – good for 4th at the meet), Will Sheeran in the 1,500m (3:51.75 – 19th overall), freshman Natalie Schudrowitz in the 1,500m (4:29.34 – 13th overall, 2nd fastest freshman), and Natrasevschi. Brown also raced the 4×800 relays. Their men’s team of Max Haensel, Ned Willig, Mike Wyman, and Martin Martinez finished 3rd with 7:38.94, while the women’s team of Schudrowitz, Taylor Worthy, Abigail Jones, and Clare Peabody finished 4th with 9:15.97. Other top 5 finishes include Courtland Clavette in the men’s discus throw (177-01, 3rd overall) and Alexandra Stanton in the women’s 400m hurdles (61.80, 4th overall).

Dartmouth also has four athletes that are now sitting at the top of the conference standings due to their performances from this meet. Molly Shapiro managed to surpass 40-feet in the triple jump for the first time down in Raleigh, jumping to a new personal best of 40-03 ½ to finish 3rd in the meet and land on top of the conference event listing. Same goes for freshman Colin Minor in the hammer throw – he threw 194-10 to finish 7th overall (6th collegian) at the meet. Reid Watson and Curtis King are our early leaders in the women’s 5,000m and men’s 10,000m events, respectively. King finished 3rd in the 10,000m with a new PR of 29:24.06, only 4 seconds away from winning the event. Watson was the top Ivy finisher in the 5,000m, as she finished 19th overall with a new PR of 16:31.36. The Dartmouth women also finished well in the sprinting events. Jennifer Meech edged out teammate Kailtin Whitehorn in the 200m final standings as the women raced in different heats. Meech finished 3rd with a time of 25.39, while Whitehorn finished 4th with 25.44 (note – both races were into strong headwinds of -3.6 and -2.2 m/s, respectively). Both women joined Marissa Evans and Anna Kikut in the 4×100 relay, where they finished 4th overall with a time of 46.87.

Harvard sent four distance runners to the Raleigh Relays, where they all ran their first 5,000m races of the season. Thomas Purnell came within 2 seconds of cracking the 14:00 barrier, finishing in 14:01.81 as the 7th fastest runner and 4th fastest collegian in the field. His teammate, Dan Milechman, finished 24th overall (17th collegian) with a time of 14:19.38. In the women’s Whitney Thornburg finished 23rd overall (2nd Ivy finisher) with a new PR of 16:34.61, while teammate Courtney Smith finished in 16:51.68, which was good for 36th overall.

88th Nike Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays – Nell Smith
A small contingent of Harvard, Cornell, and Penn’s track and field teams kicked off their outdoor season at the 88th edition of the Nike Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays, at the Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin. In one of the largest turnouts in Texas Relays history, more than 7,000 athletes participated in this competitive event, including 214 collegiate teams, with representation from 34 states and nine countries.

Harvard’s Madison Hanson opened the four-day meet with the heptathlon event. Hanson’s total score of 5,210 was a new personal best for the junior and places her at #7 in the Ivy League record books. Harvard’s Autumne Franklin had a standout performance in the 400 meter hurdles where she took third in the finals, with a time of 57.69. Her teammate Jackie Modesett also competed in this event, running a personal best of 60.06. Modesett and Franklin also ran the 100 meter hurdles, clocking a 14.19 and 14.38 respectively.

In the sprints, Harvard’s Danielle Barbian captured the fourth place title in the women’s 100 meter invitational dash. Blazing down the track in 11.46 (+3.7 wind-aided), Barbian posted a new personal best and the fastest time in Harvard and Ivy League history (had it been wind-legal). Later in the meet, Barbian also competed in the women’s 200 meter invitational race where she continued her momentum running a 24.15 (+4.6 wind-aided). Harvard’s Ashley Collinsworth secured one of the top 20 times in the 100 meter prelims running 11.87 in the event.  The Crimson quartet of Franklin, Modesett, Collinsworth and Gabrielle Scott finished 10th in the 4×400 meter relay, 3:43.01, just one place shy of qualifying for the final round.

Cornell’s men’s team claimed several podium finishes in the field events. Stephen Afadapa edged out his freshman teammate Myles Lazarou in the high jump. Both Afadapa and Lazarou cleared 6’9” to place seventh and eighth respectively. Stephen Mozia heaved a 192-02 discus throw and tossed a 60-11 1/2 shot put to earn a pair of fourth place titles in these events. Mozia finished two inches behind conference rival Sam Mattis of Penn in the discus, as Mattis finished in 3rd with a best throw of 192-04.

David Melly represented Cornell in the men’s 3,000m steeplechase, running over the last barrier in time for a sixth place finish in 9:08.72, which is his second career best in the event.  Cornell’s Wynndham Curtis posted a personal best in the 110 meter hurdles by finishing the race in 14.66. Teammate Max Hairston ran a 15.21 in his first race back from injury.

A pair of alumni from the Class of 2014 also got the chance to compete in Austin last week. Duncan Dickerson, Columbia alum who is attending graduate school at Rice University, threw 198-00 in the hammer throw placing him eighth overall. Meanwhile, Brown alumnus Evan Weinstock won the decathlon in a new personal best of 7,557 points, besting runner-up Harrison Williams of Stanford by 39 points.

Tufts Snowflake Classic
A small group of the Harvard Crimson mid- and long-distance runners stayed close to home this past weekend, as they traveled to nearby Tufts University for the Snowflake Classic on Saturday. Of the 8 athletes competed, five of them finished in the top six of their respective events, including two event wins. Tyler Spear (8:52.62) and Elianna Shwayder (10:00.24) claimed the 3,000m event titles in their respective races. Ben Huffman held off Northeastern’s David McDonald for second place in the men’s 1,500m (4:04.20), while Sarah Angell (4:56.72) and Lizzy Thomas (4:58.77) finished 5th and 6th in the women’s 1,500m event.

Maryland Invitational – L. Kelsey Armstrong
Penn traveled to College Park, MD this weekend to participate in the Maryland Invitational. Their second outdoor meet of the year was scored and yielded some good results, despite the cool temperatures. Overall, the women placed second with a total of 124.5 points, while the men had a 3rd place effort with 121 points as host Maryland won both competitions.

There were four first place finishes by the women, highlighted by freshman Candace Taylor’s run in the 400m (56.78). Freshman Molly Minnig vaulted a winning jump of 10-00. All-American Kelsey Hay had the winning throw of 145-04 in the javelin while Cleo Whiting won the 1,500m in 4:36.72. In fact, ten of the top eleven 1,500m competitors were Penn-affiliated as alum Jess Carlin (Penn ’08) came in 2nd (4:40.81) and Ashley Montgomery finished 3rd (4:41.36). Multi-eventer Noel Jancewicz concentrated on the high jump and came in 2nd with a jump of 5-05 3/4.

The men had three first place finishes. John Li and freshman Mike Benz tied in the pole vault in 12-11 ½. Noah Kennedy-White claimed the discus title with a throw of 162-09, and the 4x100m team of Wyatt David, Kyle Webster, Harrison Scharf and Ben Bower sprinted to the title with a time of 42.81. There were also multiple 2nd place finishes: David in the 100m (11.28), freshman Jeff Wiseman in the 400m (50.00), Sam Kaplan in the javelin (173-02), Marcus LaRoche in the shotput (49-10 1/2), and Nick Tuck in the 1,500m (3:55.71).

Monmouth Season Opener
Princeton sent their women throwers over to nearby Monmouth to compete. Brielle Rowe finished in the top 5 in two events – 3rd in the discus throw (135-06) and 5th in the hammer throw (156-01, personal best). Rowe’s hammer mark currently lands her in the top 6 of the conference event standings. Kennedy O’Dell also competed in the discus, finishing 8th overall with a throw of 111-11. But O’Dell’s best finish of the weekend was in the shot put, as she finished 4th with a throw of 41-01 ½ that is the 4th best throw in the conference so far this season. Sarah Waszkewitz (8th, 120-05), and multi-eventers Ariel Becker (13th, 102-07) and Kerry Krause (18th, 82-08) competed in the javelin throw and rounded out the Princeton competitors at this meet.

Stony Brook Season Opener – Susan Rodriguez
On Saturday, a small group of Columbia athletes braved the snowy weather and opened the outdoor season at Stony Brook University. The meet featured some unusual events and only scored the top three individuals and first place relay. The men were fifth overall with 11 points, while the women tied for first with host Stony Brook with 26 points.

On the men’s side, there were two event victories for the Lions. In his 1,500m debut, freshman Ryan Thomas won with a time of 4:04.81. In what must have been a very cold 2,000m steeplechase, Casey Adams crossed the line almost 12 seconds ahead of second place, winning in 6:05.31. Also scoring points was sophomore Johanan Sowah in the 600m run, placing third in 1:22.73.

The women had scorers in seven of the thirteen events, including three event wins. In the 300m dash, Mariella McCormack placed third in 42.19. Brittney Wade was the runner-up in the 600m run with her time of 1:37.49. Sarah Hardie, Indoor Heps champ in the 1,000m dash, was right behind Wade, finishing fourth in 1:38.46. Freshman Erin Melly won a very close 2,000m steeplechase in 7:12.55, just 0.01 seconds ahead of second place.

The Lions dominated the 3,000m run, claiming four of the top five spots. Natalie Tanner led the pack with her win in 10:09.01. This time places her eighth in the Heps event listing. Her classmate Samantha Siler was next over the line in 10:12.47. Henna Rustami, a Columbia sophomore running unattached in this meet, finished in third place (10:16.34). Pegah Kamrani (10:16.36) and Emily Krasinski (10:25.23) rounded out the sweep.

In the field events, Joanna Koronios won the hammer by over 22 feet with her throw of 158-07. This is currently fifth in the conference. Lauren O’Connor was third in the javelin with 102-07. Alexis Yeboah-Kodie was the runner-up in the long jump with 16-01.50.

UC Riverside Spring Classic – Rachel Sorna
Cornell headed to Irvine, Calif. for their annual spring break training trip. Less than 48 hours after their flight landed, they suited up for their first outdoor meet of the year, the UC Riverside Spring Classic. While they didn’t have to deal with the cold and snow like many teams back here on the East coast, they did have to deal with adverse conditions on the other end of the spectrum. But despite the blazing sun and temperatures in the 90s, the Big Red had a solid showing in their outdoor debut.

The women kicked things off in style as they racked up a total five event wins and thirty top 10 finishes en route to taking the team title. Highlighting the field events was Indoor Heps Pole Vault Champion Eve Bishop with her 12-11 ½ clearance. Her finish, good for second place, breaks into the top 10 all-time record books for the outdoor event. Liz Chrissy also took second in the high jump with her height of 5-03. Gaynelle Boham won the triple jump with her leap of 38-04, while Kacie Hargett opened up her sophomore year nicely by taking third in the javelin (122-09).

There were a number of great performances on the track as well. In the 200m, Udeme Akpaete was second (24.22) while senior teammate Zena Kolliesuah was third (24.32). Freshman Taysia Radoslav had a great day as she took the win in the 400 hurdles. Her time of 59.83 broke the Cornell freshman record. Elyse Wilkinson continued her improvement so far this year with a solid run of 2:11.55 and fifth place showing in the 800. In the 1500m, juniors Claire DeVoe (4:33.19) and Kristen Niedrach (4:33.54) competed well to finish third and fourth respectively. Cornell went 1-2 in the 3,000m steeplechase as Corey Dowe took the win in 11:05.58, followed closely by teammate Bori Tozser in 11:17.95.

Cornell also had a pair of strong showings in the relays. The 4×100 squad of Adrian Jones, Akpaete, Kolliesuah and Katie Woodford placed first with a time of 45.66. That performance moves them to #3 all-time at Cornell and #6 all-time in Ivy League history (EDITOR’S NOTE: due to the website’s philosophy of recognizing the best relay teams in the record books, we do not double-count relay squads if they have three or more of the same relay members as a faster squad. Jones, Kolliesuah, and Woodford are members of the 2nd-best all time relay performance of 45.55, set last year). The 4×400 also took the victory with the quartet of Radoslav, Emily Woodford, K. Woodford and Akpaete running a fine time of 3:40.90.

The men had a small group competing at UC Riverside but they finished fourth as a team with 80 points with four runner-up and eight top 6 finishes.  An all-freshmen 4×100 led off the meet with a strong second place showing with Ryan Weigel, Stanford Cooper, Michael Smith, and Brailin Paulino running a time of 41.60. Paulino also claimed the runner-up spot in the 200 with 21.94. In the other sprint relay event, Tobenna Attah (49.4), Cooper (48.7), Larry Gibson (49.3) and Smith (48.8) ran 3:16.72 in the 4×400 to place third. Attah also placed in the open 400m, finishing third with a time of 47.94. Austin Jamerson finished second in the 110 hurdles in 14.92. The final top 6 showing on the track was Jon Phillips’ 5th place finish in the 3,000m, running a personal best of 8:35.09.

A number of freshmen grabbed top 6 finishes in the field events. Mark Zavrl was second in the javelin at 192-08. Jacob Shaffer was fourth in the discus at 156-11. Andrew Robinson scored twice: he was sixth in the discus at 151-07 and fifth in the shot put at 50-07 ¼. Oseoba Airewele (fourth, 45-02 ¼) joined sophomore John Enkler (fifth, 45-01 ½) in scoring in the triple jump.

 photo by Jasmine Curtis (Cornell Daily Sun)

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