UAlbany Starts Strong On Day One Of America East Championship

BOSTON, Mass. - Although Binghamton found its name atop the leaderboard for both the men and the women after day one of the America East indoor track and field championships, the University at Albany is not far behind and in good position for Tuesday's championship finals.

The Bearcat men finished the day with a score of 52.5, followed by UAlbany (41.5 points) and Maine (32 points), rounding out the top three. The Great Danes, who are striving for an eighth straight indoor championship, were led by Alfonso Scannapieco (Mohegan Lake, N.Y.). The junior defended his title in the pole vault (16-02.75) and sits in first place for the heptathlon, another event he won a year ago. With 2,858 points through four events, Scannapieco has a shot at breaking UAlbany's program record (5,262). Also in the hunt for the heptathlon title, teammate Sean Cooper sits in second place with 2,684 points.

In addition to Scannipieco's top mark in the pole vault, Nick Mattera took third with a 14-09.00 bound.

The Great Dane men racked up 11 team points in the long jump, as Kadeem Howell (23-00.00) and Kareem Morris (22-09.00) leapt to third and fourth place marks, respectively.

Ethan Clary led UAlbany in the 5,000m run, placing second with a time of 14:47.16, while the distance medley relay team with Dylan Lowry, Ebube Abara, Daryl Subran, and Youness Benzaid placed fourth with an IC4A qualifying time of 10:15.72.

The track side of the team has a lot of promise for day two, as 18 qualified for Tuesday's finals. The highlight will be UAlbany's group of seven (out of a field of 10) competing in the 200m dash. In addition, four athletes qualified for the 60m dash finals, four for the 400m dash, and three for the 500m dash.

On the women's side, the Great Danes sit in third place with 35 points, behind the Bearcats (50.50) and Vermont (40). Senior Pat McNish (Great Neck, N.Y.) highlighted the day, winning the long jump title for a second straight year with a bound of 19-09.00. Ashley Mahlmeister (17-09.75) and Solene Bastien (17-08.25) also earned points for UAlbany, placing fifth and sixth, respectively.

In the indoor pentathlon, freshman Paige Vadnais placed sixth overall with a total of 2,949 points.

UAlbany's women's distance medley relay team smoked its conference competitors, winning by over a 10 second margin. The squad consisting of Brianne Bellon, Sherez Mohamed, Jonelle White, and Miranda McConnell earned 10 points for the Danes with their ECAC qualifying time of 11:47.23.

Junior Brittney Lane's fifth-place finish garnered four points for the team in the 5,000m finals with her ECAC qualifying mark of 17:30.96

Sophomore Michelle Anthony had the fastest time of the day in the 60m hurdles, running a qualifying time of 8.75 in the preliminaries. Teammates Tynelle Taylor-Chase and ToniAnn Werner will join her in the finals on day two. In addition, the Great Danes will have a lot of chances for points tomorrow with four competing in the 60m dash finals, four in the 200m dash, three in the 400m dash, and two in the 500m dash.

Day two of the indoor championships kicks off tomorrow at 10 a.m. with the conclusion of the men's heptathlon. Visit Championship Central for a full schedule, day one results and more.