Gold Wins RACC Classic
Albany, N.Y.—The Gold team claimed victory over Purple for the first time in three years at the University at Albany indoor track program’s 22nd annual RACC Classic Intrasquad and Alumni Scrimmage. This marks the first unofficial competition for the Great Danes since their arrival on campus in August. The women’s Purple team earned 54 points, while men’s Purple earned 48 points giving them a combined score of 102 points. Women’s Gold tallied 45 points, while men’s Gold had 60 points, giving them a combined score of 105 points for the overall win.
The RACC Classic kicked off on Friday in the UAlbany Bubble with weight throw, followed by the 3,000 meter-run, and pole vault. Junior Chinwe Igwe placed first with a 57-10.50” throw. This mark was just off the57’-11. 75” facility record set by former Great Dane Briana Cherry-Bronson last year. Jonathan Eustache set a new facility record in the weight throw with a mark of 67-06.75”.
In the women’s 3,000m, Jessica Donohue set a new facility record with a time of 9:49.8. Stony Brook transfer Jordan Johnson won the men’s 3,000m with a time of 9:00.4. Senior Donald DiBari and Junior Stefan Buechele tied for 1st in men’s pole vault with a mark of 14-00.00.
Competition resumed Monday afternoon, when the remaining athletes competed. Shot put and discus were held in the Bubble, followed by high jump in the SEFCU arena. Eric Del Vescovo earned first place in the shot put with a mark of 48-09.50. UConn transfer Tara Belinsky took first for the women’s shot put with a 41-06.00 throw. Jonathan Eustache earned another win in the men’s discus with a 152-10, and senior Lauren Lopano won the women’s discus title with a mark of 136-07.
Freshman twin sisters Anika Hibbard and Letti Hibbard tied for first in the women’s high jump with a mark of 5-03.75. In men’s high jump, senior and facility record-holder, Alexander Bowen won with a jump of 7-01.50.
Long jump was held next, followed by triple jump to finish off the field events. Mande Semon won the men’s long jump in 22-09.00”. Senior Solène Bastien won the women’s long jump in 17-11.00”. The final field event was men’s triple jump, where Chris Stephenson won with a mark of 47-05.75”.
The track events began with the 500 meter-run. Osayi Owie won the women’s race in 1:19.38, narrowly edging second-place Aliyah Banks, who finished in 1:19.79. Myles Banfield and Taariq Jones tied for first place in the men’s event with a time of 1:07.32.
Next on the track were the trials of the 55-meter dash and 55-meter high hurdles, followed by the women’s 800-meter run. Overall, Kahlia Taylor won the women’s dash in 7.21. Jaymen Teemer set a new facility record of 6.33 and won the men’s dash. In the women’s hurdles, Chibugo Ike took first with a time of 8.22, after running an 8.35 in the trials. Overall, Freshman Sidney Gibbons won the men’s hurdles in 7.84, after running a 7.86 in the trials.
In the women’s 800 meter-run, Dominique Claudio earned a new facility record of 2:16.00 for first place. Her previous facility record was 2:16.9. Najee Taylor won the men’s event with a time of 2:14.91.
The Great Danes will start their official season on January 16, when the team travels to the Ocean Breeze Complex in Staten, Island, N.Y. for the Great Dane Classic.