Champions Crowned, Records Fall for Retrievers on First Day of America East Championships
BOSTON – UMBC seniors Cameron McDearmon (Owings Mills, Md./Franklin) and Amanda Deller (Aberdeen, Md./Aberdeen) won the respective men's and women's weight throw competitions while Mercedes Jackson (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown) broke the America East record in the 60m dash preliminaries on the first day of the conference track and field championships, Monday at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center.
After the first day, the Retriever men stand in fourth place with 28 points while the women are in fifth with 29 points. Binghamton leads both of the standings with the men earning 52.5 points and the women scoring 50.5 points.
McDearmon's win is his first career league title after claiming a bronze medal in both the weight throw and shot put two years ago and finishing sixth last year. McDearmon, the school record holder in the indoor weight throw, recorded a heave of 18.13m (59'10.75"), to best the field, while three other Retrievers finished in the top-ten. Sophomore Thor Serafenas (Olney, Md./Good Counsel/Clemson) took fourth place with junior Yao Adantor (Laurel, Md./Reservoir/Morgan St./Maryland) and junior Ray Stinsman III (Mt. Laurel, N.J./Lenape) finishing in seventh and ninth, respectively.
For Deller, a three-time champion in the indoor shot put, it was her second straight win in the weight throw competition. The senior's toss of 16.49m (54'1.25") was almost a foot farther than that of the second place finisher, Robyn McFetters of Maine. Freshmen Jennifer Nelson (Plainfield, Conn./Plainfield) and Nneoma Edokobi (Rockville, Md./Richard Montgomery) also earned top-ten finishes with Edokobi posting a career-best throw of 14.47m (47'5.75") to move up to seventh all-time in school history.
Both the men's and women's distance medley relay teams finished in third place. The women's squad of junior Cody Mezebish (Westminster, Md./South Carroll), freshman Essence Fredericks (Baltimore, Md./Carver Center), sophomore Sarah Daly (Lake Orion, Mich./Lake Orion), and freshman Angel Bucci (Upper Darby, Pa./Upper Darby) broke the school record in the event and qualified for the ECAC meet, which will be held in less than a month. The team trailed only Albany and Stony Brook after crossing the line with a time of 12:05.78 which breaks the previous record of 12:19.05 which was set in 2002.
The men's team of junior Jake Albino (Hampton, N.Y./Minisink Valley), freshman Andrew Keresztes (Port Jefferson, N.Y./Port Jefferson), junior Andrew Smith (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley), and Noah Hutton finished in 10:11.19, behind only Maine and Binghamton.
Meanwhile, it was another record-breaking day on the track for Jackson. Last year's Most Outstanding Rookie, Jackson made a move to earn the top individual honor this time around by leading the pack in the prelims in both the 60m dash and 200m dash. In the shorter sprint, Jackson raced past the field and recorded the fastest time in conference meet history, 7.36. Sophomore Ebonique Jones (New Castle, Del./William Penn) also moved on to the finals in the 60m event by finishing in fourth with a personal-best time of 7.72. Jones rounded out her day by earning a silver medal in the long jump by leaping a personal-best 5.64m (18'6.00").
Jackson is one of just three Retrievers in the finals of the 200m dash as junior Kirsten Jones (Brentwood, Tenn./M.L.K. Magnet) and freshman D'Nique Phillip (Elkton, Md.) placed fourth and seventh to move on to Tuesday's finals. Jones and Phillip will also compete in the finals of the 400m dash, along with sophomore Kalane' Abbey (Laurel, Md./Laurel), as the three Retrievers took third, fourth, and fifth.
In the 500m run, sophomore Paulette Fogle (Washington, D.C./Bishop McNamara), the top-seed going into the meet, qualified first in the prelim round with a time of 1:15.01.
The UMBC men also had a successful day of qualifying in the short sprints, led by senior Dennison Long (Greenbelt, Md./Eleanor Roosevelt/FIU) who advanced in both the 60m and 200m. Juniors Dosu Teyibo (Silver Spring, Md./Barrie) and Pat Balderson (Mount Airy, Md./Linganore) will join Long in the shorter sprint after finishing seventh and ninth.
After four of seven events in the heptathlon, freshman Vincent Rentzsch (Oranienburg, Germany) sits in third place. The rookie won the shot put event while taking second in the long jump, eighth in the 60m dash, and tenth in the high jump.
Senior Trae Proctor (Brandywine, Md./Thomas Stone), a two-time conference champion in the 60m hurdles, moved on to the finals in the event, while freshman Niko Coaxum (Suitland, Md./Largo) advanced to the finals of the 400m dash.
Freshman Hassan Omar (Frederick, Md./Thomas Johnson) finished fifth in the 5,000m run with a personal-best time of 14:52.37.
In the pole vault, junior Liam Stott (Carrboro, N.C./Chapel Hill) set a career-best by clearing 4.20m (13'9.25") and finishing eighth.
Day two of the America East Championships will kick off at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 12 with the conclusion of the men's heptathlon. The meet will run throughout the day, concluding with the 4x400m relays.