UMBC Track and Field Heads North to Compete at NYU Challenge
BALTIMORE – After a successful weekend of competition in Maryland, the UMBC track and field team will head north to compete at the NYU Challenge on Friday at the New Balance Track & Field Center in New York City.
This will be the second straight weekend that the Retrievers are splitting up after the majority of the men's team competed at the Navy Invitational in Annapolis, and the remainder of the squad traveled to the Landover for the Terrapin Invitational. The move proved beneficial as another school record fell, as did personal-bests.
Junior multi's athlete Alisha Beeman (Bridgeport, Conn./Bunnell/Hartford) snapped the school record in the high jump by clearing a career-best height of 1.71m (5'0.75) at the Terrapin Invitational. Beeman has now qualified for the ECAC Championships to be held in Boston in March and currently ranks second in the America East, trailing Binghamton's Tori Shaffer who cleared 1.73m (5'8") back in December. In New York, Beeman will compete in the long jump, in addition to the high jump.
Also in Landover last weekend, junior Mercedes Jackson (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown) won the 60m dash with a time of 7.57. Her time would rank as the top in the conference heading into the weekend if not for her season-best of 7.48 which she posted at the Penn State Relays. Jackson also ranks second in the America East for the 200m dash with her time of 24.78 at the same meet. Sophomore D'Nique Phillip also sits in the top-ten for the short sprint, tied for eighth with her top time of 7.86 at the Bison Opener. Both will run in the 60m dash in the Big Apple.
Junior thrower Nneoma Edokobi (Rockville, Md./Richard Montgomery) posted a career-best heave of 15.26m (50'0.75") in Landover to jump to second in the conference. She also currently holds the third-best shot put in the league this season (12.91m; 42'4.25") while junior Emma Mayne (Mt. Airy, Md./Linganore) ranks fifth in the event (12.47m; 40'11.00").
The distance crew has impressed so far for the UMBC men with seniors Andrew Smith (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley) and Jake Albino (Hampton, N.Y. Minisink Valley) holding down the first and second spots in the 1,000m run after this past weekend. At Navy, both seniors recorded career-best times with Smith missing out on the UMBC school record by .02 (2:25.60) and Albino just behind 2:26.27. Smith will compete in the 800m in New York while Albino will race in the one-mile.
In the longer runs, sophomore Hassan Omar (Frederick, Md./Thomas Johnson), an All-Conference honoree during the cross country season, sits eighth in the 3,000m (8:30.71), while junior Noah Hutton (Bel Air, Md./North Harford/Philadelphia U.) and senior Tom Eldridge (Rocky River, Ohio/Rocky River) sit sixth (15:13.98) and seventh (15:17.68), respectively, in the 5,000m event. Eldridge, along with freshman Jon Luckin (Parkton, Md./Hereford) will represent UMBC in the 3,000m on Friday.
Sophomore Randolph Patrice (Baltimore, Md.) got off to a flying start for the Retrievers, qualifying for the IC4A Championships in the 60m at the season-opening meet at Bucknell in December with a time of 6.98, which ranks fourth in the league.
Despite only competing at the Bison Opener, junior Thor Serafenas (Olney, Md./Good Counsel/Clemson) holds a top-ten spot in the shot put (14.73m; 48'4") and the weight throw (15.47m; 50'9.25").