Track and field ends regular season at Tufts

Track and field traveled to Tufts on Saturday to compete in the 2002 Tufts Stampede, held at the Jumbos’ Gantcher Center indoor-track facility. With the start of the championship series just a week away (beginning with the Div. III New England Championships on Feb. 15 and 16), the Stampede gave Williams’ full team a final chance to hit season personal-bests and qualify for the seeded meets ahead.

In the first event on the track, the women’s distance medley relay (DMR, consisting of four legs of varying length—1200-meters, 400-meters, 800-meters, and 1600-meters) set Williams’ tone for the day, as the team ran the fastest time in the country yet recorded this season, shattering Williams’ school record in the process. The old record had itself been the national record until last year. Kali Moody ’05 led the charge in the 1200, pacing even splits to hit 3:41, and passed the baton to Claire Samuel ’04, who hammered the 400 in a tick over 59 seconds. Though Colleen Doody ’03 gunned the first half of the 800 and suffered for her fast start, she still covered her piece in 2:19, handing off to Jenn Campbell ’05 who then kicked alone through the final mile, clocking a 4:58 to close. The women’s aggregate time of 11:57.54 was 14 seconds under the national automatic qualifying standard, and reset the 11:59.25 that Doody, Katie Sharff ’02, Katie Worth ’02 and Tara Crowley ’00 posted in 2000.

Campbell returned later in the meet to win the 1000-meters in 3:01.69. Likewise, Doody headed up a Williams foursome that dominated the 600-meters – Doody took first in 1:38.42; Johanna Heinrichs ’02 second in 1:40.80; Carolyn Shank ’02 third in 1:41.38 and Moody, also back from the DMR, secured fifth in 1:42.59. Samuel, after her own leg in the DMR, raced the open 400- and 200-meters, running 1:01.26 and 26.9, respectively, good for second place finishes in both. Afton Johnson ’05 followed Samuel in 1:01.65. Julie O’Donnell ’05 and Shank went one-two in the 55-meter hurdles, a lean apart in 9.10 and 9.11.

Healy Thompson ’03, back from Winter Study abroad, proved that she didn’t lose her edge in Central America, but only honed it sharper: Thompson dropped a bomb in the weight throw, sending the 20-pound ball-and-bag 17.15 meters—56’ 3.25″—with what looked like an effortless fling.

“The funny thing about watching Healy compete,” said middle-distance man Chris Garvin ’03, who witnessed Thompson’s remarkable mark, “is that it looks like she’s throwing a weight that’s about 10 pounds lighter than everyone else’s.”

Torrey Baldwin ’04 was second to Thompson with a throw of 47’ 2.25″. Thompson also won the shot put, in which she recorded a 46’ 1.5″ hurl. Captain Diane Williams ’02 took third with her mark of 40’ 5.5″. Audrey Lumley-Sapanski ’04 won the triple-jump at 35’ 3″; Meredith Jones ’04 brought home the pole vault with 10’ 6″.

Kevin Reilly ’02 lit up the track for the men, breaking Mike Sheehan’s ’03 school record in the 600-meter run with his 1:21.64 blaze. Chris Garvin ’03 gapped the field by 20 meters in the 1000-m, crossing the line in 2:31.36. Wes Reutimann ’02 ran down a fast shooter from Plattsburg State to win the 5000-m in 15:05.00. Mitchell Baker ’04 finished third in 15:21.07, a half-turn behind Reutimann. Captain Ben Chaffee ’02 ran 15:50.45 for seventh place. Captain Jamiyl Peters ’02 won both the 55- and the 200-meter dashes, in 6.63 and 22.91, respectively. Val Von Arnim ’02 was third behind Peters in the 55-m (6.72) and a skinny second in the 200-m (22.96).

In the 1500-m, Shamus Brady ’04 lost his right shoe within the first forty meters of the race, and was unable to lift onto his toes to kick in the final lap and dropped behind teammate Matt Winkler ’04 and a racer from Tufts. Winkler, recently off the disabled list, won in 3:59.77. Brady recovered in 4:02.27 – he sustained slight blistering on his right toe, but no other injury.

The single Scott Farley ’02 attempt in the long jump – 21’ 11.75″ – was enough to land him first in the event. Kali Gairy ’04 tied his personal best in the high jump at 6’ 7″. Captain Dwight Ho-Sang ’02 exactly met the national provisional qualifying standard in the triple-jump, sticking 45’ 7.25. Trey Wright ’03 led the Williams shot-put army to a four-man sweep – Wright sent the shot 50’ 6.75″ to win and qualify provisionally for nationals; Dan Austin ’05 followed at 46’ 8.25; captain Dave Fontes ’02 was third with 45’ 11.25; and Caleb Bliss ’05 fourth at 43’ 6.5″.

Austin also had a career day in the weight throw. The freshman thrower floated the 35-pound sling 15.94 meters – a little over 52 feet – to win the event and qualify well above the national provisional standard. Richard Chau ’02 (15.84 meters) was second overall, a tenth of a meter behind Austin and a national qualifier, as well.

Next week, the team heads north to take on Div.-III New England at the 2002 championships. The men will compete at Bates in Lewiston, Maine, and the women at the University of Southern Maine.

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