Although they may have been on the same side at last week’s meet against Oxford and Cambridge, the Yale and Harvard track teams returned to their traditional rivalry this weekend. The Yale men bested the Harvard men 105-54, while the Bulldog women fell to the Crimson women 101-61 at the annual dual meet in Cambridge, Mass.
The men’s victory meant it was the seventh consecutive year that the Bulldogs had defeated the men of Harvard at the dual meet.
“Harvard was who we thought they were,” thrower Jeffrey Lachman ’09 said. “We came in there expecting to win and we did, so it was a great day.”
The Elis received strong performances across their squad, as they went on to win 14 of the meet’s 19 events, garnering five points for each victory, three points for each second place finish, and one point for each third place finish.
Especially strong support came from Lachman, who won all three throw events that he competed in — shot put, discus and hammer.
Lachman, whose 191’3’’ discus throw landed more than twenty feet further than any other throw that afternoon, also broke numerous records. It both broke his personal record and the Yale record of 181’4’’ which had been held by Tom Neville ’71 since 1970. The throw, in fact, went so far that it is the eighth longest throw in college competition this year.
“When I released the discus, I didn’t know exactly how far it was going to be, but I knew once I let go that I had the best throw of my life,” Lachman said.
Although Lachman’s shot put and hammer throws did not break any Yale records, they were still enough to win both categories and gain the Bulldogs another 10 points.
The chief source of the victory, however, came from the skill that the Bulldogs exhibited in each category, as the Yale team collected at least three points in each event. The same cannot be said of Harvard, which failed to gain any points in the triple jump and the 3000m steeplechase — both of which the Bulldogs swept, earning another nine points in each event.
In addition to the triple jump victory, the Elis also won the other two jump events, as Samuel Fox ’09 won the high jump by four inches and Reynolds Holmes ’10 won the long jump by a mere quarter of an inch.
The Bulldogs, who came in expecting to win, felt that they met their expectations.
“I’m just happy that we didn’t let them off the hook this week,” captain Brandon Giles ’09 said. “We had a lot of guys injured, but a lot of guys stepped up and kept them from stealing one from us.”
The women’s competition was not very close either, but the result was the exact opposite, as the Harvard women defeated Yale by forty points.
Like the men, the women also received a very strong performance from their throwers. The Bulldogs won three of the four throw events, finishing third only in the javelin throw. Stephanie Scaramella ’11 won both the shot put and the hammer throw, and finished second behind teammate Rachel Kuschner ’11 in the discus throw.
“[The throwers] definitely stepped it up this week, they always contribute but this week they contributed a very significant portion of our points,” captain Jen Lin ’09 said.
The Bulldogs’ point total was hurt the most in the sprint events, as the Elis only gained a combined six points in the 100m, 200m and 400m dashes. Harvard, on the other hand, was able to add 21 points to their total from these three events.
Kate Grace ’11 continued to be a dominant force in Ivy League track and field as she cruised to a first place finish in the 1500 meter run with a time of 4:30.31, a personal record. The losses in the sprint events, however, coupled with a Harvard sweep of the long jump proved too difficult for Yale to overcome.
“There were a couple events that we were weak in that made the difference, but overall we had a really good meet,” Lin said.
Grace added, “We won a lot of events, but in these meets the first three score, and we did not have the depth of performance on Saturday that was necessary to finish on top.”
The men’s and women’s track teams have shared destinations next week as well. Select members of both teams will be competing in the Penn Relays, from Thursday to Saturday. Both teams will then regroup in New Haven for the Springtime Invitational on Sunday, before going to the Ivy League Championships two weeks later.
Brandon Alfred contributed reporting.