Bates, Melton Win Events at Div. III Championships
Issue   |   Tue, 02/25/2014 - 22:49

Championship season started this weekend for the Amherst indoor tracks teams, as both the men and women participated in the New England Div. III Championships.

Women

The women’s championships took place held at Springfield College, and the Jeffs, led by record-setting performances from Naomi Bates ’14 and Kiana Herold ’17, finished fourth overall in a field of 28 teams.

Bates broke her own school record by leaping 5.89 meters in the long jump, a mark that is the best in Div. III so far this season. She also set a program record in the 60-meter dash, finishing second in the meet with a time of 7.80 seconds. The senior captured another first place for the Jeffs, winning the 200-meters in 25.70 seconds. Karen Blake ’17 followed Bates closely in both sprints, taking third in the 60m (7.83) and second in the 200m (25.86). Herold, the other record-setter, accumulated 3,132 points in the pentathlon, which topped her mark from earlier this season and placed her sixth in the meet.

Other notables for the Jeffs included sophomore Victoria Hensley, who finished ninth in the 400-meters (1:00.22) and Hannah Herrera ’17, who took eighth in the 800-meters (2:21.58). In the 1000-meters, Kelli Ellinson ’15 and Cat Lowdon ’17 finished sixth and eighth, respectively, with times of 3:06.20 and 3:07.78. Wrapping up the Jeffs’ top performances, senior Amy Dao (5:10.71) was eighth in the mile and junior Lizzy Briskin (18:06.55) was seventh in the 5,000-meters.

Men

The men traveled to MIT for the champioships, taking sixth of 26 teams on the strength of victory in the 400m from senior Matt Melton (49.23). Amherst also won the 4,000-meter distance medley in a time of 10:25.34. The wins were among a slew of strong performances by the Jeffs in the middle distance races.

“Matt looked awesome,” said head coach Erik Nedeau. “Both Nick Codola ’15 and Brent Harrison ’16 had great races in the 800-meters, as did Greg Turissini ’15 and Romey Sklar ‘15 in the mile.”

Turissini finished fourth with a time of 4:15.53, with Sklar right behind him in fifth (4:16.56). Harrison (1:56.91) and Codola (1:57.25) also finished one after the other, taking fifth and sixth, respectively. Junior Lucas Lebovitz took tenth in the 1,000-meters with a time of 2:39.01. In the long jump, junior Mark Cort’s 6.66 meter effort placed him fourth and Steven Hetterich ’15 (13.11m) and Khalil Flemming ’16 (12.80m) were eighth and tenth in the triple jump, respectively.

The Jeffs will travel to Boston Univ. for the All New England Championships (NEICAAAs) next weekend.

“The coming meet is a bit unique in that guys can qualify for the meet without having hit auto marks — as they will fill fields to get 32 guys in races,” said Nedeau. “Those with auto marks will most likely race in the strong events while others may shift focus to running a relay fresh.”

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