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Women's Track and Field | Tufts shines at Bowdoin, shows early season promise at BU

Published: Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2014 02:01

The women’s track and field team entered the weekend hoping to qualify runners for postseason meets, and they did not disappoint.

The 29th ranked Jumbos rode a 152-point score to victory on Saturday at the Bowdoin Invitational, held at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine.

Sophomore Alexis Harrison led the Jumbos domination of the short sprinting event, breaking the 8-second barrier in the 60-meter dash to win the event in 7.96 seconds. In total, the Jumbos posted 16 points in the event: 10 from Harrison, four from junior Christina Harvey (fourth, 8.12), and two from senior Anya Kaufmann (fifth, 8.13). 

“[The sprinters] trained all fall to prepare for this season, and especially increased the distance in our workouts.” Kaufmann said. “This week, we had two hard workouts on the track and recently, we have been keeping up with base work to prepare for a peak at the end of the season.”

In the 400-meter dash, senior Colleen Flanagan (63.27) and junior Lauren Gormier (63.77) finished 3rd and 4th for the Jumbos, giving the Jumbos 10 points from the long sprinting event. 

Racing the day after they competed in the 800-meter run at the Boston University John Thomas Invite, sophomores Sydney Smith (1:42.11) and Hanako Shigenobu (1:42.24) scored 14 points for the Jumbos with their 2nd and 3rd place finishes in the 600-meter run. 

The Jumbos also added 14 more points from a 2nd place finish by the 4x200-meter relay team, and a 3rd place finish in the 4x400-meter relay.

“I’d say we had an ‘ok’ day on the track.” Kaufmann said. “We have a stronger group this year and although we put four girls into the 60-meter dash final, nobody set a personal best. However, we still competed well and scored a lot of points.”

In the distance events, the Jumbos displayed the depth they had shown in the cross-country season, as they scored 28 points in three events. Freshman Kelly Fahey placed 3rd overall in the women’s 1-mile run with a time of 5:26.74, adding 6 points to the Jumbos’ tally. Sophomores Alex Kiesling (5:30.79) and Lily Corcoran (5:31.92) followed closely behind, adding six points in the competition.

In the 1000-meter run, senior Grace House (2nd, 3:09.19) and freshman Alice Wasserman (3rd, 3:13.60) ran gutsy races to add 14 more points. Freshman Lindsey Atkeson added two more points in the 3000-meter run with a 5th place finish.

“So far, we’ve been doing workouts on the indoor track as compared to our usual outdoor, ‘hilly-terrain’ type workouts that we usually do in cross-country,” sophomore Olivia Beltrani, who competed at BU over the weekend, said in an email to the Daily. “However, our goals are still the same. Like in [cross-country], we always set high expectations for ourselves, and it certainly helps motivate the distance squad and the rest of the team to compete at the same level.”

The Jumbos dominated the field events, as freshman Keren Hendel won the pole vault with a 11’1.75” foot jump. Senior Jana Hieber took the long jump by storm, winning with a leap of 18’1.75,” almost a foot better than her closest competitor. Harrison and Kaufmann took 3rd and 6th place.  

Junior Grace Demyan added a win to her resume with a first-place finish in the shot put, heaving the ball 40’3.25”, and also took 2nd in the weight throw with her toss of 47’11.75”. 

On Friday night, a few Jumbos competed at Boston University’s annual John Thomas Invite, a meet featuring teams and professional runners from around the country. Sophomore Audrey Gould and Beltrani placed 8th and 9th on what has been called “the fastest indoor track in the nation” with times of 10:05.47 and 10:06.24. The two placed among the top 10 Div. III runners in the event this year. 

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