By CARTER WALLER
As the regular season comes to a close, the University of Mary Washington’s track and field teams prepare to compete for the upcoming Capital Athletic Conference’s Track and Field Championships in Newport News, Va. on May 3.
The teams performed well at the recent John Hopkins Invitational and Christopher Newport Invitational and two school records were broken. Junior Cheyenne Falls set a new school record in the shot put, throwing for 41 feet, 0.75 inches at the John Hopkins Invitational on April 12. Freshman Glenn Taylor rewrote the school record books after his first place time of 10.78 seconds in the 100 meters, as well as finishing in second place in the 200 meter with a time of 21.89 seconds.
“Our throwers have been really great and exciting to watch this year,” said junior Owen McMillan said. Along with Falls’s record-breaking performance in the shot put, sophomore Taylor Cockerille finished second in the discus at 127 feet, eight inches, and sophomore Elysa Basker took third in the hammer throw at 135 feet, eight inches.
The weather at the Christopher Newport University Invitational provided a particular challenge for the track team to overcome. Cold, windy and rainy condiitons early in the morning made it difficult for those competing in the early events to perform at their best, especially those who ran back-to-back races.
The women’s track team showed resiliency in their performances at the Christopher Newport Invitational on April 19, as the team saw strong finishes in the 3,000 meters by multiple runners. Freshman Natalie Young finished in third place with the best team time in the 3,000 meters at 10:35.13 and was followed by fourth placed senior Liz Green, fifth placed sophomore Sam Park, and sixth placed junior Claudia Autore. In women’s field, Falls once again showed a strong performance in the shot put, winning with a distance of 40 feet, seven inches. Cockerille and freshman Sheree Turner finished second and third respectively in the event too.
“The team did great all around. It was fun for all of us to finish so well,” said Autore.
On the men’s side, Taylor finished second in the 100 meters after setting a school record the week before, and senior Matt Shaughnessy placed second in the 1,500 meters with a time of 4:06.39. Sophomore Ian Granger also came in second place in the 3,000 meters, finishing in 9:14.50.
“We all worked really hard and gave our best effort. We are a solid overall team, and that has us excited for Conferences,” said McMillan.
Last season, UMW’s men and women’s track and field finished in second-place among schools in the CAC Indoor Track & Field Championship.
“We worked really hard this season, and we’re going up against some great competition, but the whole team is very excited to show what we can do. We hope to have both the men and women’s teams get first,” said McMillan.
A few members of the team will be competing at the historic Penn Relays on Apil 26. the 4×200 meter relay and 4×400 meter relay will be running against some of the best track and field teams in the country.