Men’s Track and Field Captures Eighth Straight NEWMAC Title

The men’s track and field team secured seven individual victories en route to its eighth consecutive New England Women’s and Men’s Conference Championship. Stephen A. Morton ’10 was the only athlete in the meet to win two events, as the super sophomore captured the top spot in the 100-meter dash and long jump. The women’s track and field fell short in defending its first-ever conference title, finishing third overall.

Morton also split 22.64 seconds to finish second in the 200-meter dash, while the Engineers showcased their strength in every area. James R. Oleinik ’09 shouldered the load for the MIT attack in the throwing events. Oleinik captured the NEWMAC title in the shot put with a toss of 48’10.25”, while he also finished second in the discus throw with a mark of 137’9”.

Greg D. Tao ’10 delivered arguably the best highlight of the day as he paced a top three sweep for MIT with an exceptional performance in the pole vault. Tao cleared a career-high 15’6.25” to earn the victory with Omari S. Stephens ’08 and Patrick R. Barragan ’08 finishing second and third, respectively. Stephens also finished second in the 110-meter hurdles, although he posted the fastest time in trials with a clip of 15.43 seconds.

As usual, the Engineers showcased their depth in the distance races. Rookies Paul D. Welle ’11 and Richard J. Prevost ’11 worked together in netting the first two places in the steeplechase. Welle split 9:34.34 and Prevost closed just behind him in 9:35.62. Jack H. Bourbonnais ’10 proved to have the strongest kick at the end as he out-dueled two other competitors for a victory in the 10,000-meter run. Hemagiri Arumugam ’10 and M. Brian Jacokes ’08 combined to give MIT eleven points in the 5000-meter run after finishing third and fourth, respectively.

The Engineers were just as dominant in the middle distances. After yielding the first three spots in the 800-meter run, Matthew F. Bieniosek ’09, William S. Phipps ’10, David Reshef ’08 and Kevin G. Kleinguetl ’11 swept the next four places. In the 1500-meter race, Jake J. Ruzevick ’09 led the MIT charge with a third-place finish while Joseph Roy-Mayhew ’08 took fifth and Christopher Wong ’08 closed in sixth.

Women place third

The middle-distance trio of Andrea E. Bradshaw ’09, Jacqui M. Wentz ’10, and Adrienne. M. Bolger ’09 delivered solid races on the track, giving MIT a boost in the team standings. Bradshaw set a new Institute record in the 800-meter race, finishing second overall with a time of 2:17.07. Wentz completed the same circuit in 2:17.40, for a third-place finish (in a time that would have also set a new school mark). Wentz also scored a first-place finish with a 25-second victory in the steeplechase.

Bolger lost a heart-breaker in the 1500-meter, but her clip of 4:42.98 smashed the previous Institute record by nearly three seconds en route to a second-place finish.

Leanne M. Veldhuis ’08 supplied another terrific highlight as she earned a conference title in the 400-meter hurdles behind a season-best 1:04.88. Veldhuis anchored another near-record effort for the Engineers, as her race with Bradshaw, Wentz and Bolger in the 4x100-meter relay fell just shy of the school record. The group split 4:04.21 to finish behind Wheaton College and Springfield College, the two teams that also finished ahead of the Engineers in the team standings.

In the field, Emily Hwang ’09 secured a personal-best in the pole vault en route to her first conference championship. Hwang cleared 11’9” to easily out-distance the next closest competitor while freshmen Karin E. Fisher, Rebecca L. Stavely, and Lynn E. Jepsen gave MIT four of the top six finishers in the event.

Aline Thomas ’08 continued her outstanding season with two first-place finishes. Thomas tossed 43’1.75” for an impressive win in the shot put before winning the hammer throw by seven feet with a throw of 162’3”. MIT finished third with 178 points, while Wheaton (205) secured a two-point victory over Springfield (203) for the team title.