In their first weekend of action against Ivy League opponents, both the Yale men’s and women’s track and field teams placed third against Dartmouth and Columbia. Despite their last-place finishes in the tri-meet, both teams posted impressive showings from several athletes throughout the weekend.
On the women’s side, Dartmouth’s athletes outperformed both the Lions and Bulldogs handily, scoring a remarkable 86 points to Columbia’s 59 and Yale’s 36. The men’s competition was significantly closer, as the Light Blue triumphed with 66 points — scoring just four more than the Big Green and 14 more than the Elis. With the much anticipated Harvard-Yale-Princeton meet just days away, the Bulldogs are eager to build on their strengths and compete at an even higher level.
“I think we had some solid performances as a team and feel pleased with where we are at this early in the season but are hungry for more,” distance runner Kayley DeLay ’21 said.
The meet kicked off with impressive performances from Yale’s throwers, with many of them topping their marks from the week before. Standout thrower Andrew Rochon ’21 matched his collegiate best by sending the shot put 15.14 meters — a distance that earned second place in the event. Rookie thrower Jack Dunn ’22 earned third place in the weight throw with a mark over half of a meter further than his throw in his season opener.
Thrower Emma Vasen ’22 also shined in the shot put for the second week in a row, capturing first place in the event with a throw of 13.50 meters. Despite her early success, Vasen noted that training and adjusting to collegiate athletics has not always been easy.
“Without a throws coach, training has definitely been difficult,” Vasen said. “As a throws program, we’ve really had to rely on each other to help spot technical flaws, which has really brought us together. I’ve really had to be self-motivated and accountable to work hard in pursuit of my goals.”
Yale’s distance runners had another busy weekend on the track, scoring several points in an array of events. In the men’s competition, the Bulldogs were especially successful in the 800-meter and 3,000-meter runs. In his first meet back since cross country season, Cameron Wyman ’21 was the runner-up in the 800-meter run, crossing the line in 1:55.29 seconds. In the 3,000 meters, Nick Dahl ’21 and Robert Miranda ’22 led a pack of Elis and earned second and third place, respectively.
As for the women’s team, DeLay’s performance in the 3,000 meters was a highlight of the weekend. The sophomore won with a time of 9:40.73, cruising past the line nearly two seconds faster than the runner-up. Middle-distance specialist Jocelyn Chau ’22 also took first place in her event, winning the 800-meter run with a time of 2:12.85. The Toronto native beat five upper-level students on her way to winning the event.
“For the [800-meter run], I intended on taking the race out at a solid pace, but unfortunately, I didn’t have a good start and ended up mid-pack instead of at the front,” Chau said. “So, what was key to my success was staying patient and kicking when I felt confident.”
Several of the Bulldogs’ top sprinters also had stellar weekends for Yale, finishing strong in both the individual and relay events. Sprinters Lilly Enes ’20 and Vincent Vaughns ’20 shined in the 60-meter dash — track and field’s quickest event — and took first and second place, respectively. Both athletes’ finishes were just off their personal bests in the event.
Despite knowing that victory was out of the question heading into the the 4×400-meter relay, both the men’s and the women’s teams gave it their all in the meet’s final event. Yale’s men’s 4×400-meter relay beat both Columbia and Dartmouth’s A-teams by more than a second.
“The key to our success [in the 4×400-meter relay] was our desire to compete,” Sei said. “It was a close race, and what ultimately put us over the edge was simply a will to beat whoever we were running against. … With that said, this meet was somewhat of a disappointing result after our trailblazing season opener. We’ll get where we want to be, but at the root of it all we’re going to have to compete.”
A week after its school record-breaking performance in the Yale season opener, the Elis’ relay team of Enes, hurdler Addi Coy ’21 and sprinters Emma Osborne ’21 and Aliya Boshnak ’22 also snagged a first-place finish in the relay with a time of 3:48.84. The Elis finished nearly two seconds faster than the Big Green and more than six seconds faster than the Lions.
Even though the Bulldogs struggled to string together enough victories in other events, they have confidence in the team’s chemistry and dedication and hope to be more successful next weekend.
“It is the incredible support on and off the track and across event groups, along with the excitement we feel toward one another’s success that makes the team’s chemistry so strong,” DeLay said. “Day in and day out we see each other giving our all at practice and we know that we are all working towards the same goal — to score for our team.”
The Bulldogs will head to Princeton, New Jersey, next Saturday to face Harvard and Princeton for the annual HYP meet at Jadwin Gymnasium.
Ellen Margaret Andrews | email@example.com