Courtesy of UR Athletics

This past weekend, both the UR Men’s and Women’s Track and Field teams sent squads to compete in the ROC City Classic at Nazareth Collegeand the Bison Classic at Bucknell University. At both meets, the Yellowjackets had strong showings and took great strides forward as a team towards end-of season goals, finishing with the highest possible standings at the NYSCTC Outdoor Track and Field Conference Meet.

At this point in the year, championship season is quickly approaching, and the competition is in full swing. The highlights from this past weekend include the stellar races in the relay events, in addition to strong individual performances.

In the relay events, for both the men and women, the 4×400 teams raced their fastest times of the season thus far, running 3:21.44 and 3:58.72, respectively. Both of these marks are ECAC qualifying times and stand as very strong mid-season marks.

In addition, the men’s 4×800 ran a very brisk 7:51.33, which would also qualify for ECAC. The women did not run a 4×800 at the Bison Classic, but they showed great depth in the 800m with strong races from junior Alyssa Arre and sophomores Gabby Hernandez and Samantha Kitchen.

An additional relay performance deserving recognition is the race run by the women’s 4×100. The team of sophomore Brittany Schutrum, juniors Emily VanDenburgh and Cameron Edwards and T5 Becky Galasso qualified for the ECAC meet as well.

The meet was filled with exemplary performances on the  men’s side. Sophomore Dan Nolte and senior Mark Rolfs had impressive 10,000m season debuts, and sophomore Brant Crouse and senior Max Sims had great 400m races. Sophomore Wilfed Wallis and freshman Cory Peruffo marked season bests in the 800m. Senior Clayton Stumpf had a season best in pole vault, and junior Jeremy Hasset had a personal record in the 1500m. Hasset, for the first time in his UR Track career, broke the 4-minute mark in the 1500m, after running 4:00.0 three times in the past.

The performance from the Women’s team was no less impressive. Both Edwards and Galasso earned ECAC qualifying marks in the 400m hurdles, as did sophomore Alexandra Goldman and junior Amanda Hall in the shot put.  Sophomore Annie Peterson had a personal best.

Overall, the teams definitely went up against strong competition in every division of the NCAA and did not back down.

“Although some may not have been as fast as individuals had been hoping, it was great to see people come back for second or third races of the weekend and not only give it their all, but also post very fast times,” senior Brad Kowalczyk said. “These past [few] meets are definitely great stepping stones, and it’s exciting to see both the Men’s and Women’s teams’ potential entering the upcoming championship meets.” Both the Women’s and Men’s team have immense potential and strong tune-up performances are anticipated at Cortland this upcoming weekend and at St. John Fisher the following weekend. Numerous individuals have qualified for the NYSCTC meet, ECAC meet and the national meet. Both teams have the depth across the board to place very highly at their respective team conference meets, and the upcoming weeks will be used to work towards realizing this potential.

Kuhrt is a member of the class of 2017.

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