Engineers Capture First Ever New England Division III Championship
Behind six individual wins, the nationally-ranked No. 9 MIT women’s track and field team captured the NCAA Division III New England Championship for the first time in program history on Saturday. Jacqueline M. Wentz ’10 took first place in both the 1000 meters and the mile while Andrea E. Bradshaw ’09 ran an outstanding 800 meters to help the Engineers capture the regional championship. Sophomore Hazel L. Briner ’11 won the pentathlon while setting a school record on Friday for the Cardinal and Grey as well.
Bradshaw set a school record while achieving an NCAA Provisional cut time in the 800 meters, finishing in 2:15.18. Wentz’s mile time was just a second and a half off her Institute record pace set last week. She followed that performance by setting a personal record in a victory at 1000 meters with a time of 2:59.18. In the 55-meter hurdles, Amy R. Magnuson ’10 (8.44) and Portia M. Jones ’12 (8.49) went one-two, as both hit NCAA Provisional marks. The 4x400 meter relay team gave Tech its final event win of the day, knocking off the second-place team from Tufts with a time of 4:02.73.
Jones also broke a pair of her own MIT records in the 200 and 400 meters. In the 200m, Jones ran to a fourth-place showing with a school record time of 26.10 seconds. She then achieved an NCAA Provisional qualifying mark and broke her own Institute record by over a second, by finishing two laps of the track in 58.69 en route to a second-place finish.
On Friday afternoon Briner captured the pentathlon 3,072 points, courtesy of first-place finishes in the shot put and 800m and second-place in the high jump and 55m hurdles. Her point total surpassed Nydia M. Clayton ’04’s record of 3,063 points set in 2001.
Tech’s total of 134 points was enough to hold off second-place Williams (118) and Tufts (108), the defending New England champions.
MIT will compete in the New England Collegiate Indoor Championship next weekend at Boston University.
Engineers Earn Runner-Up Honors At NEWMAC Championships
MIT enjoyed another spectacular day in the water, and finished in second place at the 2009 NEWMAC Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships. With numerous school and personal records in tow, the Engineers secured their eighth consecutive runner-up finish.
Amy E. Jacobi ’11 started MIT’s last-day run with a strong performance in a 100 fly time trial. The senior star eclipsed her previous best and NEWMAC record with a swim of 5718, nearly solidifying a spot at the national championships.
In the first official event of the evening, senior Nicole M. O’Keeffe ’09 broke through with an outstanding swim in the 1650 free. She smashed her previous best in the race, while finishing less than one second off the Institute record. Swimming nearly even splits the whole distance, O’Keeffe closed in 17:26.56 to finish second overall and earn All-Conference honors.
In the 200 back, rookie Allison M. Alwan ’12 continued her impressive championship debut by snatching a third-place finish in an individual event for the third time on the weekend. Improving her prelim time by over four seconds, Alwan finished in 2:09.78 in notching the second-fastest time in MIT history.
The Engineers picked up significant points in the 100 free. Jacobi paced MIT’s depth with a sixth-place finish (53.28), while Kaitlyn M. Creasey ‘11, Sarah B. King ’10, and Sydney A. Giblin ’12 finished second through fourth in the consolation final.
Although MIT didn’t have any entries in the championship final of the 200 breast, the Engineers once again relied on their depth in adding to their scoring total. Ellie S. Souganidis ’10 and Abigail M. Clark ’09 finished 1-2 in the consolation heat, with senior Caroline S. Lowenthal ’09 closing in fifth.
Senior Jennifer A. Chao ’09 delivered one of the most impressive races of the weekend with a dominating win in the 200 fly. Securing her first individual victory at the NEWMAC Championships, Chao swam 2:08.58 to set a new meet record while posting the best time for an MIT swimmer in 21 years.
In the final event of the meet, MIT ensured its runner-up finish in the team standings with two great efforts in the 400 free relay. In the consolation, junior Ashley E. Pinchinat ’10 delivered a huge personal record by splitting 54.70 in the lead off spot. O’Keeffe closed out her NEWMAC career in winning fashion while teaming with sophomore Lauren R. Hernley ’11 and Creasey, who split 3:40.17 to win the heat by three seconds. The Engineers finished fourth in the championship final, but nearly set another school record as the team of King, Chao, Giblin, and Jacobi split 3:34.22.