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Men’s Track Strong at BU, Invitational

MIT Qualifies More Athletes For D-III Championships

By Robbie Gray

TEAM MEMBER

The MIT Men’s Indoor Track and Field team continued its successful season this weekend at two venues. While most of the team was at home at the MIT Co-Ed Invitational, a few members took advantage of Boston University’s banked track at the Valentine’s Classic.

At the Invitational, the Engineers began their day with the pentathlon, where MIT hoped to qualify four additional athletes for next week’s New England Division III Championships. Peter J. Bluvas G led the way, scoring a strong 3118 points. Junius K. Ho G, Thomas M. Hoover ’05, and Adrian E. Townsend ’04 followed suit, going 2-3-4 in the event and each exceeding the qualifying mark of 2900 points. MIT has now qualified a total of seven pentathletes and is poised to dominate the event at championships.

The first running event of the day was the 3000m, where Jeffrey J. Billing G ran a season best time of 9:16.42. MIT runners Daniel R. Feldman ’02, Sean P. Nolan ’03, and Benjamin A. Schmeckpeper ’05 put forth a good effort in the 1500m to sweep the top three places. In the 55m hurdles, Richard F. Rajter ’03 gave the team a scare when he took a bad step and had to pull out of the race. Fortunately, Rajter’s leg was okay, and he had already qualified for championships in the pentathlon, high jump, and hurdles.

Runners have strong Invitational

MIT runners continued to perform well as the meet progressed. In the 600m, Russell A. Moriarty ’04 ran a strong 1:29.58 to get third. Gabriel N. Sanchez ’05 won the 400m with a relaxed 52.82 effort. In the 55m, MIT took 2-3-4 as Robert H. Gray ’02, Marc R. Washington ’03, and David E. Kloster ’05 ran 6.84, 6.87, and 6.88, respectively. George R. Hanson ’03 ran an exciting 2:38.43 in the 1000m, winning by 0.03 seconds. Taku Iida ’04 ran a season best 2:07.24 in the 800m to earn fifth. In the 200m, Washington earned second with a time of 23.93, while Brandon Hohm ’04 ran a very strong 24.02 to get third place from a slower heat. Rounding out the running events, Albert S. Liu ’03 and Craig B. Wildman ’03 took 1-2 with times of 15:44.90 and 15:48.65, respectively.

Khan wins weight throw

The throwers also had a good day, led as usual by Christopher J. Khan ’04 in the weight throw. Khan threw 52'11" to win the event, while Marios Michalakis ’04 and David P. Saylor ’04 earned second and sixth with performances of 49'6.5" and 45'4", respectively. The second place throw for Michalakis was a huge personal best, and all three competitors have qualified for championships next week. In the shot put, Francisco U. Cruz ’04 came through with an effort of 44'2.5" to earn him second. The mark also qualified him for championships, where he will compete alongside Khan.

The jumps also went well for MIT. Vaulters Nathan B. Ball ’05, Nestor F. Hernandez ’05, Dan Kwon ’02, and Daniel G. Walker ’05 went 1-4-5-6, with Hernandez and Walker achieving personal bests. Ball, who won the event with 14'6" and narrowly missed 15'1", will lead Kwon, Hernandez, and Daniel F. Opila ’03 to the championships next weekend. Craig D. Mielcarz ’03 won the high jump with clearance over 6'8".

In the horizontal jumps, Gray won the long jump with a qualifying mark of 21'6.5". Austin K. Neudecker ’05 also leapt over 21 feet for second place, and leapt an impressive 45'1.75" to win big in the triple jump and increase his qualifying mark. Oneil G. Bhalala ’05, coming off a leg injury, jumped a very impressive 41'10.25".

Relay team breaks MIT record

While the performances at home were impressive, the highlight of the day came from BU. MIT runners Brian C. Anderson ’04, Yuval Mazor ’02, Jesse R. Alejandro ’05, and Sean J. Montgomery G, smashed the varsity record in the distance medley relay and ran the fastest time in the event this year by a Division III team. Anderson started the race with a solid 3:00 split in the 1200m. Mazor ran a 49 second 400m leg, handing off to Alejandro, who gave a 1:59 effort in the 800m. Montgomery ran an incredible anchor leg of 4:03 for 1600m meters, equivalent to a 4:05 mile, to finish the incredible race for MIT in a time of 9:53.16.