As the men’s indoor track and field team’s season draws to an end, the number of athletes qualifying for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships continues to grow.

This past Saturday, the Yellowjackets traveled to Boston University for the Valentine’s Day Relays, where four individuals qualified for the competition. Three did it a second time while competing in UR’s 4×400-meter relay team.

“Overall, the team performed very well,” freshman Malik Sams said. “We had several personal bests.”

Senior Kirk Bristol qualified for the ECAC championships in the 200-meter dash, running a 22.72 and placing 43rd in the event, which had more than 20 heats. Senior Matt Tierney qualified in the 400-meter dash, placing 32nd overall with a time of 49.97. This was his first sub-50 result this season.

Tierney and Bristol also ran in the 4×400-meter relay, along with juniors Brian MacIlvain and Jacob Plyman. They were clocked at 3:20.92, finishing 15th and just missing a NCAA provisional time. Plyman also qualified for the ECAC championships in the 500-meter run, placing 22nd with a time of 1:06.28. MacIlvain was not far behind, placing 26th with a time of 1:06.73.

Sams had a very impressive showing on Saturday, becoming the first UR runner in a long time to break eight seconds in the 55-meter high hurdles. He was clocked at 7.99 and finished 17th out of 70.

Three men competed in the 55-meter dash. Freshman Marquis Turner was 38th with a time of 6.75, sophomore Max Ehrmann was 48th in 6.82 and sophomore Justin Papariella placed 86th, clocking in at 7.09. Papariella was also 79th in the 200-meter dash with a personal best time of 23.33. Ehrmann placed 81st with another personal best of 23.37. Turner competed in the 400-dash and placed 102nd with a time of 52.59.

In the distance events, sophomore Mark Stevens qualified for the ECAC championships in the 5,000-meter run. He placed 41st and ran a time of 15:04.53. Both senior Kevin McGettrick and sophomore Dan Mueller also ran personal bests in this event. McGettrick placed 70th with a time of 15:34.67 and Mueller was 75th, clocking in at 15:43.49.

Junior Nick Roosa and freshman Dan Chebot ran two spots apart in the 3,000-meter run. Roosa was 99th with a time of 9:11.06 and Chebot was 101st with a time of 9:12.05.

The Valentine’s Day Relays meet brought out a lot of tough competition for the Yellowjackets, including Division I and II schools, along with outside competitors from track clubs and some preparatory schools. It served as good preparation for the approaching championship meets.

“Right now we are working toward one main goal – the state championship,” Sams said. “I feel this weekend’s meet put us where we needed to be both physically and mentally. The next two weeks are needed for a few adjustments here and there, but I really believe we are ready for it.”

Philbrick can be reached at ephilbrick@campustimes.org.



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