The men’s track and field team set its lineup at the Raider Challenge to prepare for the postseason and just happened to return home with the victory.

“We just ran well,” Head Coach John Izzo said. “We certainly didn’t set our lineup to score a lot of points.”

With 116 points, the men dominated the competition, finishing 19 points ahead of their closest competition.

“I was extremely pleased with most of our performances, and the few errors we had were very correctable,” Izzo said.

The 100-meter dash produced solid results for the team, as juniors Matt Tierney and Kirk Bristol both finished in the top five. Tierney ran 11.00 seconds to finish third and Bristol was fifth with a time of 11.25.

They competed in the 200-meter dash, as well, and the results were even better. Tierney won the 200 with a time of 21.98 seconds and Bristol placed second with a time of 22.51 seconds.

The 400-meter dash was won by sophomore Jacob Pylman, who ran 50.03 seconds. In the 800-meter run, junior Chris Clark and senior Matt Rodems were fifth and sixth, respectively. Clark ran 1:59.12 and Rodems ran 2:00.81.

Senior Dan Duett placed third in the 1,500-meter run, running 3:59.82. Freshman Mark Stevens ran 4:02.21 to finish in sixth place.

In the 3,000-meter steeplechase, sophomore Andrew Whitbeck was third with a time of 9:42.78. The 1,600-meter relay team won easily, posting a time of 3:18.39. In fact, the B-team would have scored if it had been eligible, finishing seventh with a time of 3:35.71.

In the high jump, sophomore Tom Felio marked 1.80 meters to finish tied for third place. The throwers were very solid, posting points in each of the four events.

In the shot put, graduate student Andrew Wunder was third with a mark of 13.61 meters. Senior Zach Opsitnick was fourth, marking 13.31 meters.

Freshman Eric Scheele marked 13.26 meters to place fifth. Wunder posted another third-place finish in the discus throw, marking 42.36 meters.

Opsitnick marked 38.93 meters, placing fifth. Wunder dominated the hammer throw, marking 50.83 meters. In the same event, Skeehan was fourth with a mark of 45.76 meters. Junior Andrew Lange was eighth in the javelin throw marking 41.86 meters.

Despite all the success, there are concerns surrounding the upcoming events.

“Our biggest concern right now is getting healthy,” Izzo said. “We’re just going to have to do a better job scoring points in the events where we’re strongest. [On a positive note], the people who are healthy are right where we expected them to be.”

With just two regular season meets remaining, the team must continue to make improvements to secure its goals of winning the state championship meet and sending as many athletes as possible to Nationals.

Swidler can be reached at dswidler@campustimes.org.



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