This weekend the Yale track teams split up and traveled to three meets in Boston and at Penn State, facing the best competition in each event throughout the region. Both coaches and runners were pleased with the results, but saw room for improvement.
“The weekend fell short of some expectations,” captain Donald Carson ’02 said. “There were some standout performances — mostly from the Terrier Classic at Boston University.”
Coach Dan Ireland said he was also excited about the performances of his young distance runners at BU, which was a non-scoring competition. Ireland singled out Josh Yelsey ’05 who, in his first indoor meet, ran an impressive 4:19.3 mile. Three other runners also ran personal bests, including Casey Moriarty ’05 and Lucas Kunce ’04 in the 3,000 meters and J.C. Reindl ’03 in the 5,000.
The most notable Eli feat of the meet was in the 1,000 meters, where Rob Lobue ’04 ran a 2:25. In addition to finishing fourth on Saturday, Lobue’s time was a Bulldog sophomore record and the fifth fastest in Yale history.
The men’s team was not as successful at the Northeastern University Husky Invitational, finishing behind Ivy rival Dartmouth in 11th place with only 13 points. Jordan Chapman ’05 and Adam Petrillo ’02 put in good performances in the high jump and pole vault with fifth- and eighth-place finishes, respectively. Kyle Hilgendorf ’05 impressed the most, finishing third in the 800 meters.
The Bulldogs sent their long sprinters to Penn State to run at the highly competitive Penn State National Open. Coach David Shoehalter said he was happy with the performance of Don Carson ’02, Thomas Hocker ’02, Phil Williams ’02, Tom Stout ’02 and Jeff Hobbs ’02.
“They ran well,” Shoehalter said. “Where we are now is right about where we were last year. — It is indicative of good things to come.”
The women’s team also traveled to Boston to compete in both the Terrier Classic and the Husky Invitational. As a result of the split, their “focus shifted from team score to individual performance and getting some ECAC qualifying times,” captain Jessica Thomas ’02 said.
At BU they succeeded in doing just that. Their top two performances came from the O’Neill sisters. Kate O’Neill ’03 finished second in the 3,000 meters with a time of 9:25.24 while her sister Laura O’Neill ’03 ran the 5,000 meters in 16:36.07. Both marks were good enough to earn an NCAA provisional time.
Coach Mark Young also credited the distance medley relay of Rebecca Hunter ’04, Anika Kreider ’03, Rebecca Dickens ’04 and Madeleine Meek ’04 with a fantastic performance as they qualified for the ECAC championships with a time of 12:03.00.
Not having to send runners to Penn State, the women were a little stronger than the men at the Husky Invitational, finishing sixth with 48 points, 10 points ahead of Ivy foe Dartmouth.
Candace Arthur ’05 and Stephanie Blake ’05 gave notable performances, finishing fifth in the 200 meters and the 400 meters, respectively. Other strong finishers were Dickens, who was second in the 800 meters, and Vanessa Mazandi ’05, who ran third in the 1,000 meters.
As in the previous meet, freshmen gave impressive contributions as well.
“The freshman trio of Melissa Wisner, Susan Chan and Mary Kuhn all ran solid in the 3K,” Thomas said of the trio that placed third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
Next week, both teams come back together to take on fellow Ivy Leaguer Cornell in Ithaca, N.Y.
“It should be a great meet against a relatively deeper squad, a good tune up for Heps,” Carson said.