Outdoor Track Wraps Trip To Texas
AUSTIN, TEXAS – The University at Albany outdoor track program has already complete two weekends of competition, with their trip to Texas coming to a close on Saturday. The men and women brought a small group of athletes to compete in one or both of the Texas Relays at the University of Texas at Austin or the Bobcat Invitational at Texas State University down the road. Neither meet had team scoring, but the point was to provide the athletes participating an opportunity to compete in more favorable weather conditions than they would see in the Northeast, so they may have a better chance at hitting a postseason qualifying time.
The Texas Relays, the more prestigious of the two meets in which the Danes competed, featured a sampling of UAlbany’s “stacked” relay events. The men were attempting to improve on their times for the 4x800 and distance medley relays to solidify their place at the Penn Relays in late April. Additionally, the men and women both ran 4x100 relays, using the warmer weather more conducive to sprinting events to lay down a faster time.
The men’s 4x800 team of Larry Ramirez, Andrew Pirnie, Youness Benzaid, and John DeLallo placed sixth in the University/College section with a time of 7:33.93. This particular team has more potential than the team that ran 7:26.02 at indoor IC4A championships, as DeLallo did not run on that team, and would theoretically allow for an improvement of about three seconds. The men’s distance medley relay team of DeLallo, Winston McCormack, Pirnie, and Benzaid placed 10th in the University/College section with a 10:04.55.
The men’s 4x100 team of Robert Harris III, Jaymen Teemer, Donald Williams, and Kareem Morris placed 23rd in the University/College section with a 41.28. The women’s team of Ashlee Maduro, Jillian Haynes, Michelle Anthony, and Kahlia Taylor placed 29th in the same section in 46.72. Neither team qualified for finals, but both had also been entered in the event at the Bobcat Invitational, so they got the chance to run again.
But the Texas Relays wasn’t solely for relay events. UAlbany also had some individual entries participate in Austin. Haynes and Taylor ran in the University/College section of the 100, placing 52nd and 63rd respectively. Haynes ran 12.16, and Taylor ran 12.25. On the men’s side, Morris and Williams placed 36th and 60th respectively in the University/College section. Morris ran 10.65, and Willaims ran 10.96. The hurdlers saw some action as well, with Anthony and Tynelle Taylor-Chase placing 44th and 61st in the University/College 100 hurdles, with Anthony running 14.21 and Taylor-Chase running 14.47. Taylor-Chase doubled up in the University/College 400 hurdles, placing 21st in 1:01.01. She was joined by Aderinsola Ajala, who placed 31st with a time of 1:01.81. Kathryn Fanning placed 11th in the Universtiy/College ‘A’ section of the 1,500, running 4:26.93. Valentina Talevi placed 15th in the University/College section of the 5,000 with an 18:02.77. Finally, Alfonso Scannapeico placed 14th in the University/College ‘A’ section of the pole vault with a jump of 16’-6.75”.
The Bobcat Invitational was being held about 40 minutes by car away from the Texas Relays. The big draw at this meet was the opportunity for the multis athletes to earn a qualifying mark for the postseason, and hopefully get the need to continue to compete in the full set of events out of the way early, in an effort to mitigate the wear and tear that accompanies the full event. Matthew Catera placed fourth overall in the decathlon, scoring 6,377 points. Catera won the 110 hurdles and the pole vault sections of the event. Paige Vadnais placed sixth in the heptathlon, scoring 4,378 points, bumping her to third place on UAlbany’s all-time outdoor list.
Field events had a greater representation of UAlbany athletes at Bobcat. Nathan Hiett placed second in the pole vault with a jump of 15'-11.75". Lauren Lopano placed 30th in the discus, throwing 119'-9". She also placed 15th in the hammer throw with a mark of 148'-3". Abel Gilet placed sixth in the shot put with a mark of 52'-2.5". And the javelin saw three UAlbany athletes make their 2013-14 debuts. Katie Dowd placed 13th, throwing 118'-1". Anthony D’Angelo placed 15th with a mark of 168'-7", and Phillip Udeogu placed 18th, throwing 161'-11". Additionally, Veleisha Walker placed ninth for the women with a mark of 128'-6", and Scannapeico placed 22nd for the men, throwing 120'-2".
UAlbany was well-represented in the running events as well. Harris III, Teemer, and McCormack placed fourth, 14th, and 16th in the 100, respectively. Harris III ran 10.59, Teemer ran 10.79, and McCormack ran 10.85. Ajala once again ran the 400 hurdles, this time placing fourth with a 1:02.85. Ramirez also ran the 400 hurdles, finishing eighth with a 55.57. Talevi followed up her 5,000 at the Relays with a 3,000 at Bobcat, placing third in 10:12.09. She was joined by Molly Pezzulo, who finished 11th in 10:46.88. Brianne Bellon placed 13th in the 800 with a 2:17.28. Anthony and Taylor-Chase returned to the 100 hurdles. Anthony placed fifth in 14.07, and Taylor-Chase placed sixth in 14.31. Haynes and Taylor ran the 200, finishing in fourth and 25th respectively. Hayes ran 24.25, and Taylor ran 25.53. On the men’s side, four UAlbany saw four athletes compete. Teemer placed eighth in 21.83. Williams placed 12th in 22.02. McCormack placed 19th in 22.28. And Harris III rounded out the group in 22nd with a 22.35.
The 4x100 relay teams for both the men and women competed at Bobcat, after not qualifying for finals at the Relays. The men’s team of Harris III, Teemer, Williams, and Morris won the event in 41.12. And the women’s team of Maduro, Haynes, Anthony, and Taylor finished fourth, running 46.70.
The athletes that remained home for UAlbany were originally scheduled to run at a dual meet up at Dartmouth College, but the conditions of the track on Dartmouth’s campus were not conducive for live competition yet. The meet was cancelled, and those athlete received a weekend off of competition before UAlbany’s next event. The Danes are scheduled to open their brand new track next weekend in the men’s Dogfight with UConn, and the women’s Quad Meet, on Saturday, April 5, the first of three scheduled home meets for UAlbany this season. The meets this weekend, which will run concurrently, will be the first home event for UAlbany track & field that takes place on campus since the 2011 outdoor season.