Last weekend, the men’s track and field team had yet another quality performance, placing third out of 12 teams in the Raider Challenge Invitational at Roberts Wesleyan College.

“We had some good finishes and some good performances,” sophomore Eric Scheele said. “It was a good day to compete and let loose.”

Senior captain Matt Tierney commented that the location of the meet contributed to the performance.

“Roberts has a very fast track and, along with the tailwind, many of the short sprinters had seasonal bests,” he said.

The men had two first place finishes with one individual champion. Tierney placed first in the 400-meter dash early in the meet, setting the pace for a strong day with a time of 50.32 seconds, more than a second ahead of the runner up.

In other sprinting events, sophomore Max Ehrmann was seventh in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.26 seconds.

In the 1,500-meter run, senior Chris Nolan was sixth with a time of 4:09.77, bringing in some points for the ‘Jackets.

UR’s depth and strength comes in the distance events and this was apparent over the weekend. In the 5,000-meter run, the Yellowjackets had four finishers in the top 10. Sophomore Mark Stevens was third in the event with a time of 15:51.14 and junior Joe Lust was sixth with a time of 16:28.81. Freshmen Tom Brekke and Tyler Kieft were eighth and ninth, respectively.

In the hurdle events, sophomore Tyler Stapleton was eighth in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 17.24 and freshman Brian Kraftschik was seventh in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:00.00.

The relay teams also fared well. The 4×100-meter relay team placed fourth in their event with a time of 43.54 and the 4×400-meter relay team was UR’s other first place finish, clocking in at 3:26.28.

In the field events, sophomore Eric Scheele was second in the hammer throw, throwing 13.96 meters. He was also third in the discus throw with a distance of 39.78 meters and fifth in the hammer throw, throwing 42.68 meters. Sophomore Mike Burgstrom was third in the event with a distance of 45.64 meters and he was sixth in the shot put, throwing a distance of 12.62 meters.

In the last event, the javelin throw, senior Andrew Lange came in fourth, throwing 43.64 meters and freshman Matt Starr placed fifth with a distance of 43.51 meters.

The men finished the day with a score of 85 points, placing them behind SUNY Geneseo and the Rochester Institute of Technology.

“Things haven’t clicked yet,” Tierney said, “but we are on the verge of some great performances that we hope will come at the right time in the season.”

UR is looking forward to the end of the season and Scheele has high hopes for the coming weeks.

“It’s definitely the wrap-up of our season – states is in three weeks,” he said. “We’re in a good spot going into the weeks before the post season.”

This weekend, the Yellowjackets will travel to Nazareth College or Hamilton College to participate in another invitational.

Philbrick can be reached at

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