Participating in Rochester Institute of Technology’s Black and Orange Invitational on Friday afternoon, the UR men’s and women’s track and field teams displayed strong effort. Though the invitational was not a team-scoring event, a few individuals had some standout performances.

The women’s team had two individual champions, along with several second-place finishes. Freshman Casey Green took one of the first-place spots in the 400-meter dash. She finished the race in 62.08 seconds, just 0.4 seconds ahead of the runner-up. She also demonstrated her skill in the 55-meter dash by placing fourth overall with a time of 7.56.

The other individual win came from senior Anjuli Cherukuri in the pole vault event, where she once again cleared the bar set at 3.30 meters.

Two other Yellowjackets placed in the top eight in the event, as freshman Kristin Fekete cleared 2.85 to place third, and freshman Elena Mangano tied for fifth by launching over the bar set at 2.55.

The ‘Jackets participated in three more events in which they had top-eight finishers. In the 500-meter dash, senior Stacie Woods and sophomores Proshanthi Chodagiri and Heather Graham placed second, fourth and sixth, respectively, with times of 1:20.33, 1:23.01 and 1:24.16.

Woods was just a half of a second behind the champion of the event.

In the 1-mile run, senior Kellie Hasselwander placed second, crossing the line in 5:11.82, falling just short of the top competitor, who finished in 5:11.44.

Finishing behind her were sophomores Suzanne Giunta and Lisa Cole in fourth and fifth place, respectively. They were just .06 seconds apart from each other with Giunta finishing in 5:23.16 and Cole finishing in 5:23.22.

The final Yellowjacket-filled event was the 1,000-meter run. This time Cole was first for UR, placing second overall with a time of 3:08.24. Sophomore Allison McComb finished fourth in 3:09.70 and sophomore Sadie Gollub finished eighth with a time of 3:14.10.

In other running events, freshman Emily Gray took seventh in the 55-meter hurdles with a time of 9.84 seconds.

The 4×400-meter relay team placed fourth, crossing the line at 4:24.26.

In field events, the triple jump had multiple placers. Sophomore Melissa Skevington took third by marking a spot at 10.44 meters, while senior Kathryn Knowles placed fourth in the event with a jump of 10.14.

Skevington also placed in the long jump with a leap of 4.81 meters to put her in sixth. UR had another sixth-place finish in the weight throw. Sophomore Elise Scheid threw 12.99 meters for the placement.

On the men’s side, there was a lone individual champion. Senior Mike Burgstrom took the crown in the weight throw with a throw of 17.84 meters. This throw was nearly two meters longer than the one from the runner-up.

In other field events, freshman Dan Abud tied for fifth in the pole vault by clearing 4.12 meters. Also, junior Travis Buttaccio placed seventh in the long jump, leaving a mark at 6.42 meters. Buttaccio not only placed in a field event, but he also placed in a running event. In the 200-meter dash, he finished fifth by crossing the line in 23.64 seconds.

Junior Malik Sams also had a fifth-place finish. He took fifth in the 55-meter hurdle event with a time of 8.22 seconds. In the 500-meter dash, freshman Andrew Lee finished eighth in 2:41.46, and senior Dan Mueller placed eighth in the 1,000-meter run with a time of 69.12.

The final event in which the Yellowjackets placed was the 4×800-meter relay. UR’s team finished third with a time of 8:04.16.

This weekend, some of the team’s top performers will travel to Boston University for the annual Valentine’s Meet on Friday and Saturday, while the rest will participate in the Cornell Open at Cornell University on Saturday.

Philbrick is a member of the class of 2009.



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