Bill Ziskin

Men And Women Win Villanova Open

UAlbany Sports Information   01-28-2017

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – The University at Albany track & field team visited Ocean Breeze for the second time in three weeks Friday for the Villanova Open.  Both the men and the women won the team competition.  The men scored 143 points in victory, followed by Villanova and Rutgers, while the women scored 108.5 points, over Delaware and Monmouth.

The first event on the track was the men’s 5,000m.  Ryan Udvadia and Kyle Gronostaj swept the top two places in 14:34.88 and 14:40.60, respectively.  Niamani Morrison qualified for finals in the women’s 60m hurdles in fourth place in 8.80, and Grace Claxton qualified sixth for finals in the with a time of 8.95.  Sidney Gibbons qualified fourth in the men’s 60m hurdles in 8.24.  The women’s 60m dash saw Taahira Butterfield qualify for finals in seventh in 7.86, while Robert Harris III qualified in second in 6.93 in the men’s race.

Schuyler Pruyn placed third in the women’s one-mile in 5:06.03.  In the women’s hurdles final, Morrison placed fourth in 8.68, and Claxton placed fifth in 8.82.  Gibbons placed fifth in 8.18 in the men’s hurdles final.  In the 60m final, Butterfield placed fourth for the women in 7.75, and Harris III placed third in a personal best 6.82.  He tied Monmouth’s Bryan Sosoo, but was displaced by three one-thousandths of a second.

Halie Snyder placed fourth in the women’s 400m in 56.55, followed by teammate Kiyah Owens in eighth in 57.42.  The UAlbany men swept the top four places in the men’s 400m.  Myles Banfield won the event in 48.23, followed by Matthew LeLiever in second in 48.51, Jason Tomlinson in third in 48.54, and finally Momodou Jobe in fourth in 48.79.  Local product Izaiah Brown of Rutgers did not compete in the men’s 400m despite being the top overall seed.

Evan DeGraw placed fourth in the men’s 800m in 1:55.13, followed by teammate Austin Sperl in sixth in 1:55.73.  The women’s invitational 1,000m featured just two competitors, both from UAlbany.  Nira Lovick won in 2:59.15, and Pruyn did not finish.  The men’s invitational 1,000m featured a slightly larger field of six, two of which were UAlbany athletes.  Jake Johnson won the event in 2:27.86, and Matthew Gladysz placed sixth in 2:38.22.

Claxton returned for the women’s 200m, where she placed second in 24.21.  Jonel Lacey placed sixth in 25.06.  Osiris Nicholson placed third in the men’s 200m in 22.17, and Lamine Gueye placed sixth in 22.36.  Rutgers’ Brown won the event, in which he was also the top overall seed, in 21.13.

The women’s 5,000m preceded the only relay events of the meet.  Cara Sherman won in 17:20.25, followed by Hannah Reinhardt in third in 17:34.50, which is a personal best by 30 seconds and puts her in contention for Junior Nationals in June.

UAlbany’s women’s 4x400m relay team of Lacey (56.8), Snyder (57.1), Owens (57.8), and Claxton (53.0) placed second behind Syracuse in 3:44.98.  The men’s relay team of Jobe (49.3), LeLiever (48.2), Tomlinson (47.5), and Banfield (48.3) won in 3:13.02, avenging a loss to Rutgers from last year, who finished second in 3:15.89.

In the field events, Matthew Campbell won the men’s high jump in a field of four in 6-09.75.  He tied the height cleared by former teammate Alexander Bowen Jr., who was competing unattached in a different division.  Anika Hibbard won the women’s high jump, clearing a height of 5-07.00.  Letti Hibbard placed eighth, clearing 5-03.75.

Stefan Buechele won the men’s pole vault, clearing a personal best 15-09.00.  Jake Coveney placed eighth in the men’s long jump, recording a mark of 19-06.25.  Alexis Trott tied for sixth in the women’s long jump in 17-06.00.  Omahri Sturdivant won the men’s triple jump in 47-08.00, and David Henry Jr. placed sixth in 43-00.50. 

Eric DelVescovo broke the school record in the shot put for the third time in four meets with a winning throw of 54-03.25, improving on his mark from last weekend by three and a half inches.  Tara Belinsky placed second in the women’s shot put in a personal best 46-04.75.  Jonathan Eustache placed second in the men’s weight throw with a mark of 62-10.00, and Chinwe Igwe won the women’s weight throw in 62-04.00 followed by Belinsky in seventh in 49-07.75.

Next week, the Great Danes will visit Ocean Breeze once again to compete in the Villanova Invitational.  Claxton will be racing in Boston University’s Scarlet & White Meet after she speaks at a USATF function in Boston.

Athletes of the Meet:  Robert Harris III, Stefan Buechele, Grace Claxton, Tara Belinsky, Hannah Reinhardt (Most Improved)

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