Sports Shorts

Tech Runners Take On Plansky Hills

The Tech cross country teams competed well amid bright fall foliage at the Plansky Invitational this past weekend, earning first and second place in the men’s and women’s races, respectively.

The female Engineers competed against Williams College at the head of the four-kilometer competition. MIT led the race in a fast first mile, only to see Williams catch up once athletes reached the hillier woods section of the cross country route. The Tech women held on well to finish second with 41 points.

Maria J. Monks ’10, who finished in third place, was the only Tech runner to finish within a strong Williams pack. She was followed by Elizabeth M. Finn ’09, Jacqueline M. Wentz ’10, and Elizabeth L. Labuz ’09. Jennifer A. Doyle ’09 rounded out the Tech scorers in 11th place. MIT will have another shot at the Williams women, who are ranked within the top five teams in the nation, at the National Collegiate Athletic Association regional championship.

The Tech men won the six-kilometer competition with 34 points to Williams’ 41 and Tufts’ 81. Jacob J. Ruzevick ’09 recovered from last week’s illness to lead the Engineers with a second-place finish. Jeremiah R. Cohen ’09 and Joseph D. Roy-Mayhew ’08 were right behind, followed by several Tufts and Williams runners. Trevor B. Rundell ’09 and Gihan S. Amarasiriwardena ’11 scored 12th and 13th to round out the scoring places.

The Engineers will take a break from racing this coming weekend in preparation for the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference Championships at Smith College.

—Elizabeth Finn, Team Member

Crew Gears Up for Head of the Charles

The largest gathering of high school, club, collegiate, national, and international crew teams will take place on the Charles River this weekend, attracting over 7,500 athletes. After a seven-year absence from the Championship Eights event, both the MIT openweight women and heavyweight men will compete on Sunday afternoon against the best crews in the rowing world. This year, those elite teams include the United States, German, and Spanish national teams, world-qualifying Pennsylvania Athletic Club Rowing Assocation, and the London Rowing Club, as well as assorted Division I teams.

Last Saturday, MIT’s varsity crews traveled to New Hampshire for a pre-Charles tune-up. MIT rowers quickly established their supremacy, winning the Men’s Open Eights, Open Fours, and Women’s Open Eights events. Even after pushing well past the leading crews in the first thousand meters of the race, MIT’s heavyweight men refused to shut down, finishing with a final margin of 52 seconds over second-place finisher University of Massachusetts in the Men’s Open Eights. The heavyweights also conquered the Men’s Open Fours, winning by a decisive margin of 67 seconds. The openweight women and lightweight women also had strong performances in the Women’s Open Eights, earning gold and silver with the openweights edging out the lightweights by six seconds.

Building on the momentum they gained in New Hampshire, the heavyweight men should surprise some unsuspecting crews this weekend. The Men’s Championship Eights will lead off at 4 p.m. Sunday, followed immediately by the Women’s Championship Eights at 4:17 p.m. Starting at the Boston University bridge, each of the bridges along the Charles afford an excellent view of the day’s races, though wise spectators have learned that the Weeks and Elliot bridge turns often catalyze the most exciting moments of the race. MIT will also have boats competing in the Men’s and Women’s Club Eights events and the Men’s and Women’s Lightweight Eights events, to be held earlier on Sunday afternoon.

—Stephen Young, Team Member

Engineers Secure Second Place in NEWMAC

In a battle of undefeated women’s tennis teams, Wellesley College emerged with a 6-3 win over MIT to claim the top seed for next weekend’s New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference Championship. The Engineers fell to 7-2 overall and 6-1 in league play, while Wellesley improved to 8-1 on the year and 7-0 in the NEWMAC.

MIT opened the day by winning two out of three doubles matches. Anisa K. McCree ’10 and Elizabeth A. Denys ’11 collaborated for an 8-2 victory in the No. 2 spot, while Karina N. Pikhart ’09 and Melissa A. Diskin ’11 fell 8-3 in the No. 3 spot. The Engineers regained the lead following an 8-5 decision at No. 1 doubles that favored Leslie A. Hansen ’10 and Mariah N. Hoover ’08.

Hansen, who was named the NEWMAC Singles Player of the Week, captured Tech’s final point of the day with a 6-2, 4-6, 6-1 win in the top singles slot. Hoover (6-0, 6-1), Yi Wang ’09 (6-3, 6-1), and McCree (6-0, 6-1) fell in straight sets. Denys (2-6, 6-4, 6-4) and Diskin (6-4, 2-6, 6-3) were able to force an extra set, but both fell in the third.

Wellesley found success in the exhibition matches as well. In doubles action, Wang and Jennifer A. Rees ’11 were edged out 9-8, and Emma M. Rosen ’11 and Jenny C. Dohlman ’11 were also defeated 8-5. Rees registered the best singles outing with a 6-2, 6-1 loss, while Kerry R. Weinberg ’10 and Rosen each fell by a score of 6-0, 6-2. Katherine M. Smyth ’10 lost 6-1, 6-0 in the final spot.

—Mindy Brauer, DAPER Staff

Sailing Finishes Second at Captain Hurst Bowl

A-Division skipper John M. “Jack” Field ’08 and crew Julie C. Arsenault ’08 finished in the top five in nine of 15 rounds, pacing MIT sailing to a stunning second-place finish out of 22 teams at the Captain Hurst Bowl this past weekend.

With winds sweeping at 10–12 knots for much of Saturday, Field and Arsenault placed second in the sixth round, while securing a pair of earlier third-place marks during the event hosted by Dartmouth College.

Battling Sunday’s cold northerly breeze of 6–15 knots, Tech’s dynamic duo finished first in the 13th race, while also slotting fourth in the 11th round.

The exceptionally strong outing was fitting for Tech’s long-standing talents, both of whom were recently named to the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association All-Academic Team, honoring scholar athletes who have excelled in the sport and in the classroom.

Also faring remarkably well was Tech’s “B” team of skipper Brooks L. Reed ’09 and crew Elizabeth A. Hass ’10, who finished third overall, moving up four slots from Saturday. The duo’s score of 102 beat out event-winner Boston College’s lower group by five points.

Reed and Hass ranked in the top 10 in all but one of 15 rounds.

MIT hosts the Oberg Trophy competition this weekend.

—Mike Stoller, DAPER Staff