Men’s track gears up

Despite the sudden departure of Head Coach Fletcher Brooks, men’s track has high hopes for the 2012-13 indoor season. When Brooks resigned, the athletic department asked Dick Farley, who served as an assistant coach last season, and cross country Head Coach Pete Farwell ’73 to assume the role of interim co-head coaches for the season.

The Ephs will return three senior tri-captains with experience on the regional and national level. Tri-captain Brandon Abasolo ’13 has qualified for Div. III NCAAs in the steeplechase the past two seasons and will compete in the 3000 meter and 5000 meter in the indoor season. Fellow distance specialist tri-captain Scott Rodilitz ’13 will focus on the 5000 meter, where he hopes to earn his first berth in Nationals. Finally, tri-captain Chris Fogler ’13, a member of last year’s 4×400 Div. III NCAA squad, is focusing on the sprints and hurdles after an offseason injury precluded his participation in the jumps and decathlon.

The men will have a strong distance group coming out of cross country season. Steve Mendoza ’13, Wade Davis ’13, Max LaBerge ’14, Chris Lee ’14, Aldis Inde ’15 and Cole Townsend ’15 all have experience at the championship level and seek to improve this year.

After a 2012 season beset by injuries, the middle distance squad returns a stable of runners capable of scoring individually and on relay squads. Andrew Beaudoin ’15 had a breakthrough campaign in the outdoor as the team’s top 800-meter runner, while Eric Schneider ’15 earned a spot on the 4×400 team that nearly qualified for outdoor Nationals. Peter Drews ’14 and Tommy Gaidus ’13 will look for continued success in the mile event.

A speedy rookie class of six joins Jared Nowell ’15 and Emmanuel Daring ’15 in the sprint events this year. After a one-two finish in the 110-meter hurdles at the 2012 Div. III New Englands, Jabulani Blyden ’13 and Laye Samoura ’15 are favorites in the 60-meter hurdles and should see actions in other sprint events.

The team graduated two top field performers in Rusty Kowher ’12 and Tomas Kearney ’12, but is excited to see the improvement of pole-vaulter Johnny Ray Hinojosa ’13, who was an all-region performer last year.

“The men have been working hard in the summer and the fall and focusing on weight training,” said Farwell. “There is a lot of team spirit as we approach the season and the men this year are highly competitive. In terms of goals, we look to beat teams that we have previously lost to.”

The men open their season at Smith on Dec. 1 at 10 a.m.

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