Last Friday’s Syracuse Invite marked the first meet of the indoor track season, and men’s and women’s indoor track held their own against Div. I competitors. While there was no overall team placement at the event, the Ephs’ strong performances bodes well for the upcoming indoor season. Head Coach Fletcher Brooks, who had left Williams track and field three years ago to coach rival MIT, returned to a gifted roster with great potential this season.
Coming off of a productive offseason led by co-captains Deividas Seferis ’09, Alex Hoerman ’09 and Macklin Chaffee ’09, the men zoomed by competition at the Syracuse Invite. Chaffee got the season rolling with a blazing victory in the 3K race, finishing with a time of 8:37. Jeff Perlis ’10 placed second in 8:45. Seferis passed all but one of his opponents in the 200, finishing second with a time of 22:66. Rounding out the sprinting events, Sy Schotz ’10 finished third in the 400 with a time of 54:19. The Ephs displayed the depth of the squad with Taylor Fitzgerald ’11, Hoerman, Richard Fusco ’12 and Stew Buck ’09 finishing first, second, third and fourth in the 500. Finally, Geoff Rodriguez ’11 finished second in the mile-run with a season-pacing time of 4:32.
The men’s team did not stop there, showing that they were strong not only on the track but also in the pits. Eric Jonash ’09 soared past competition, landing third in the men’s long jump with a distance of 6.17 meters. Rookie Tomas Kearney ’12 made a name for himself by finishing second in the men’s triple jump with a bounding distance of 13.24 meters.
Rusty Cowher ’12 finished second in the shot put with a throw of 12.30 meters, barely edging Nate Newburg ’09 who threw 12.01 meters. To round out the field events of the day, Matt Farley ’11 finished third in the weight throw a 14.37 meter toss.
The men aimed to make a statement in their first meet, and they did just that. “Everyone did a great job,” Hoerman said. “[We had] great performances all around and [this was] a great way to start off the season.”
Co-captain Lauren Philbrook ’09, fresh off an All-American cross-country season, set a strong example for the women with an impressive personal showing. She finished second in the 3000 in 10:21.11, and Bret Scofield ’10 ran close behind to secure third place. The mid-distance crew put their training to a successful test, as Nora Mitchell ’10 and Jess Clark ’10 snagged first places in the 800 and one mile races, respectively.
Karyn Moss ’12 qualified for the finals of the 55m hurdles and captured third place in the triple jump. Leaper Sara Turner ’11 commanded a terrific season opener, earning sixth place in the high jump. Turner also launched herself just .03 meters below Moss’ distance in the triple, earning fifth place in her first collegiate attempt in this event. Madeline Watson ’12 also contributed to the small and young field team crew, pulling off a second place finish in the weight throw with a toss of 11.64 meters.
The women have great opportunity to build upon their experience in Syracuse and to show well against Div. III and NESCAC competition. “I thought everyone had solid performances that were great starting points for the rest of the season,” Philbrook said. “The team spirit was pretty high too, even though not all the team was there. I think both of these things bode well for the future.”
Men’s and women’s track will next run at the Williams Invitational on Jan. 23.