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The Blue & Gray Press | October 24, 2017

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Track and field breeze past competition at Battleground

Track and field breeze past competition at Battleground

BY ADAM HAGER

The University of Mary Washington track and field teams hosted the Battleground Relays this past Friday, March 21 and Saturday March 22 and kicked off their outdoor season in style.track1

Despite the fact that the meet was not scored, both the men’s and women’s teams established their dominance early and often over the course of the two-day meet.

A relatively warm Friday afternoon set the stage for a very successful day for the men’s team. By the end of the day, all four men’s track events were won by Eagle athletes.

Julian Menk finished first in the 3,000 meter run (9:09.68); Ben Tuxbury, Glenn Taylor, Allan Meyer and Zach Kerns won the 4×200 meter relay with a time of 1:31.20; Sean Healy won the 10000 meter run (33:09); and Jamie Van Emmerik, Nate Dawes, Kevin McCarthy and Chris Anderson took the 4×800 meter relay (8:51.20).

In field events Friday night, Alex Shivnen took first place in the hammer with a distance of 104 feet, 10 inches.

The women also found success on the first day of the meet. Natalie Young won the 3000 meter run (10:28.89) and Claire Harrington, Corinne Zinser, Danielle Holzhauser and Emily Derse took first in the 4×200 meter relay (1:52.31).

In field events, Jordan Watkins jumped 33 feet, 7.25 inches, good enough for a first place finish, and Cheyenne Falls threw 99 feet, 11 inches to win the women’s javelin.

Despite high winds on Saturday, day two of the meet was much of the same success for the Eagles. The men’s team took first place in the 4×100 meter relay (Elias Inges, Glenn Taylor, Allan Meyer and Zach Kerns) with a time of 42.84 seconds. Matt Shaughnessy won the 1500 meter run with a time of 4:12.40 and Chris Markham won the steeplechase at 10:28.10.

The Eagles also took first in the distance medley relay (Nate Dawes, Ben Tuxbury, Kevin McCarthy and Jamie van Emmerik) at 10:58.20 and the sprint medley relay at 3:46.98.

Frank Corona threw 166 feet, six inches to win the javelin, Nick Judy cleared 14 feet in the pole vault and Matt Parker jumped 20 feet, one-half inch to take first place in the long jump.

Lauren Braney won the 1500 meter run (4:59.84); Liz Green, Emily Derse, Victoria Parent and Natalie Young won the distance medley relay at 13:09.98; and Claudia Autore finished in 20:18.43 to win the 5000 meter run.

Cheyenne Falls won the shot put with a distance of 40 feet, 3.25 inches after already winning the javelin, Taylor Cockerille took the discus with a distance of 113 feet, four inches and Claire Harrington cleared 10-and-a-half feet to win the pole vault. The women’s 4×400 meter relay took first place as well.

Junior Claire Harrington, winner of the pole vault and part of the winning 4×200 meter relay team said she was happy with her team’s results this past weekend.

This weekend’s meet was absolutely incredible. There were stellar performances all across the board and what was even more impressive was that it was our first meet of the season,” said Harrington. “Ideally, we will only keep getting better, and knowing the people on my team, I am pretty confident that we will.”

Harrington is adamant about collective team effort. When she is not running or pole vaulting, she is cheering her teammates on as they compete.

“Track and field may seem like an individual sport, but it truly is a team effort,” said Harrington. “Everyone does better when we are all encouraging one another and working together to get better.”

Harrington said the one word to best describe the track team would be “driven.”

“Everyone on the track team always gives 110 percent, and we are always motivated to get better,” said Harrington. “We are a group of people that is self-driven but we also drive each other as teammates to reach our full potential.”

A member of the track and field team the last for the past two years, Harrington is hoping her experience and hard work will continue to pay off this year and into her senior season.

“I want to clear at least 11 feet, six inches by the end of my senior year,” she said.

After already clearing 10 feet, six inches in the first meet of this outdoor season, that goal seems possible for Harrington.