Baltimore, Md.—UMBC track and field will head to The Armory for the second time this year, looking to improve on their fifth place finish at last year's America East Championships. Both the men and women finished in the fifth spot, as Albany claimed the title for the men and women.
WHAT: 2015 America East Indoor Track Championships
WHERE: The New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory
WHEN: Friday, Feb. 20- Saturday, Feb. 21
TEAMS COMPETING: Albany, Binghamton, Maine, New Hampshire, UMBC, UMass Lowell, Vermont, Stony Brook, Hartford
SOCIAL MEDIA: @UMBCAthletics, @umbcxctf, #UMBCgrit, #AEChamps, #AETF, @AmericaEast
Last Year at the Championships:
UMBC junior Mercedes Jackson (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown) successfully retained her conference titles in the 60m and 200m dash events, while junior Alisha Beeman (Bridgeport, Conn./Bunnell/Hartford) and senior Cody Mezebish (Westminster, Md./South Carroll) broke school records, as the UMBC track and field teams completed competition at the 2014 America East Indoor Championships at The Armory.
After leading the qualifying rounds in both events yesterday, Jackson swept the sprint events for the second straight year, pushing her career conference indoor gold medal tally to five. She also won the 60m dash her freshman year in 2012. The junior first captured the 60m title with a time of 7.42, just .01 off of her season-best. Then she made it a sweep by taking the 200m title with a season-best mark of 24.00, .02 away from her school record (23.98) set last season.
Beeman made it two school records in two days, capturing the conference title and top UMBC height in the high jump after bettering her school-best pentathlon score on Sunday. Already the Retriever record holder after clearing 1.71m (5'7.25") at the Terrapin Invitational back in January, Beeman pushed past the field at the 1.70m (5'7") mark. She kept going and raised the UMBC bar to a record height of 1.74m (5'8.5").
Senior Andrew Smith (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley), the school record holder in the 800m run, grabbed a gold in the event in New York. Smith outclassed the America East field by posting a time of 1:51.17.
In the men's one-mile race, senior Jake Albino (Hampton, N.Y./Minisink Valley) placed third. Later, he led off for the Retrievers' 4x800 relay of sophomore Nick Johnson (Olney, Md./Sherwood), junior Charles Bolinger (Bowie, Md./Eleanor Roosevelt), and Smith, which also won a bronze with a time of 7:41.31, which meets the IC4A standard.
In the 3,000m run, sophomore Hassan Omar (Frederick, Md./Thomas Johnson) bettered his own school record time to win a bronze medal. Omar set the previous record and qualified for the IC4A meet with a 3k time of 8:23.50 at the NYU Team Challenge on Jan. 24 but bested it at the conference meet on Monday by crossing the line at 8:22.56.
Sophomore Vincent Rentzsch (Oranienburg, Germany/Elite Sportschule Potsdam) finished third in the heptathlon. After scoring 2,695 pts. on the first day of the seven-event competition on Sunday, Rentzsch added 2,194 pts. for a personal-best total of 4,889 pts. The sophomore finished second in the 60m hurdles (8.57) on Monday while finishing sixth in the pole vault (3.95m; 12'11.5"), as well as the 1,000m run (2:51.65).
Last Time Out:
The women were led by the distance medley team, who broke their own school record, as well as Mercedes Jackson who won the 60m dash on Saturday. The quartet of Angelina Oputa, Essence Fredericks, Mary Katherine Kulp and Sarah Daly took third in the race, but in the process, broke their own school record. The team set the mark last weekend with a time of 11:53.55. On Saturday the foursome crossed the tape in 11:42.27.
Jackson continued her success this winter in the 60m dash. In the prelims, Mercedes was the top qualifier with a time of 7.50. In the finals, Jackson would cross the line first with a time of 7.43, a season best for her. Mercedes Jackson, who won the 200m dash at Penn State. Jackson ran a 24.24 to take the gold on Saturday. Paulette Fogle earned a top ten finish for UMBC on the day. Fogle placed seventh with a time of 56.57 in the 400m, moving her into sixth place on the all-time list.
Sarah Daly took home fifth in the 800m run with a time of 2:13.53, while Mary Katherine Kulp placed eighth in the event finishing with a time of 2:14.04. Both Daly and Kulp earned a spot at the IC4A meet with the runs. Sophia Cologer moved up to seventh on the all-time list with a run of 5:09.93 in the mile. Senior Julie Gesslermoved into fifth on the all-time list for the 3,000m with a time of 10:16.22.
On the men's side, Daryian Miles paced the Retrievers in the 60m dash. Miles ran a 6.93 in the prelims to qualify for the finals. In the finals, Miles ran a 6.89 to finish in seventh place.
Hassan Omar led the charge for the men, setting a new school record with his second place finish in the 3,000m. Omar ran an 8:18.07, just .02 behind winner David Taylor of Cornell. Nick Johnson earned himself a spot at the IC4A meet with a tenth place finish in the 800m run. Johnson finished with a time of 1:53.03, which is also good for number three on the all-time list.
Yao Adantor led the Retrievers in the field events, finishing fifth in the shot put. Yao tossed a 16.90m (55-05.50) in the event.
The men's distance medley team had a strong day, qualifying for the IC4A meet with a third place finish on Saturday. The team of Nick Johnson, Ty Thronson, Charles Bolinger, and Eric Schuler finished in a time of 10:08.47.
Following the America East Championships, both teams will head to the IC4A/ECAC Championships in Boston, Mass. The meet will span two days, March 7-8.