Track and Field teams race at New Englands

Men’s team finishes sixth overall, best in D-III; women take eighth

This weekend, the men’s and women’s track and field teams competed in the All-New England Championships.

A week after coming up just a few points short of Williams College at the New England Division III Championship, the No. 23 ranked MIT men’s track and field team exacted revenge. The Engineers finished sixth overall in the competition between Division I, II, and III teams, the best result for a Division III school.

Jeremiah R. “Yermie” Cohen ’09 had a tremendous performance in the 1500, finishing third overall and tops among Division III runners while setting a new MIT record. Cohen’s time of 3:48.40 is good enough to automatically qualify him for the NCAA Championship and stands alone atop Division III in 2010.

Paul D. Welle ’11 also finished strong in the 3000-meter Steeplechase, as the junior was the second overall finisher and improved his NCAA qualifying time, moving up to no. 7 in the country with a 9:12.22 mark.

The women’s team, ranked No. 7 in the country, finished eighth and were the second best Division III finisher in the meet.

Tech had five new or improved NCAA qualifying marks at the meet, to go along with four personal records. Leading the way was Jamie L. Simmons ’12, who had an excellent showing in the 400-meter hurdles. Simmons finished in third place overall, tops among Division III runners, with her time of 1:02.39, the second best time in Division III on the year.

Portia M. Jones ’12 had a pair of strong performances at 200 and 400 meters. Jones won the 400 with a season-best time of 56.79. The provisional mark moves Jones up to 14th in the country. In the 200, Jones tied a personal record, finishing in 24.70 good for third place and first in Division III. Her time was just 0.13 seconds from the automatic qualifying standard and is the sixth fastest in the nation on the year.

Jones and Simmons teamed up with Martha M. Gross ’12 and Kirsten H. Aarsvold ’11 to run an excellent 4x400 race. The quartet placed second with NCAA automatic time of 3:48.62, smashing the Institute record by over three seconds.

MIT will travel to Springfield College next week to compete in the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championship on Thursday and Friday, May 13 and 14.