The Tufts men’s and women’s track teams had an excellent weekend as the hosts of the Snowflake Classic, held at the Clarence “Ding” Dussault Track and Field Complex. While some athletes raced over spring break in San Diego at the Point Loma Nazarene University Collegiate Invitational, this weekend was the first all-team meet and the official season opener for the men and women.
The men’s team finished second out of the 16 schools competing, with several individuals winning events and placing high nationally. Junior Alex Lemieux came in first in the 100-meter event, with a time of 10.83 seconds and achieving a national ranking of 26. Senior Sam Gatti attained the 32nd place national ranking, finishing first in the 10,000-meter event with a time of 31:44.12. The long jump event was also a shining spot, with junior Carter Rosewell finishing first with a 22’3 3/4” jump. His jump gave him the 42nd placement nationally.
The women’s team placed first out of 18 teams and many athletes also won their events. Junior Campbell Devlin won the 400-meter hurdles event with a time of 1:04.15, earning the seventh national place. The Jumbos also won the high jump and 1,500-meter events, with junior Jaidyn Appel achieving 5’5 3/4 and a No. 7 national ranking and senior Tara Lowensohn finishing in 4:45.63 and reaching 35th nationally, respectively.
Junior Kate Bidgood placed third for the Jumbos and eighth overall in the 1,500-meter event with a time of 4:54.85. Bidgood was incredibly happy with the race. Seven other athletes from the Tufts women’s team participated in the event.
“I always like racing alongside my teammates,” Bidgood said. “It’s really a confidence boost to race with the people you practice with every day.”
Bidgood mentioned how the Snowflake Classic was met with both anxiety and excitement as the official spring season opener.
“Everyone was really excited about how we started the season,” Bidgood said. “The first meet is always a little nerve wracking, … [especially] if you’re coming back from an injury or you didn’t race well during indoor season, but … the positivity and excitement was infectious.”
The event was also notable as it was the first Snowflake Classic hosted at Tufts since 2019.
“I like hosting meets,” Bidgood said. “When we’re home, the team spirit is really awesome. ... Friends and family come to watch, so the atmosphere and vibe is really encouraging and positive.”
Bidgood noted that while hosting may be stressful for coaches, she appreciates how the team creates a great ambiance at home meets.
Now that the first official meet — dubbed a rust buster by the track community — is over, the athletes want to ramp up their performances in future races.
“People rode the high wave from cross [country] into track, and that’s been going really well,” Bidgood said.
Looking toward the rest of the season, Bidgood reflected on some of her personal and team goals.
“I [want] to be more confident with racing and take risks,” Bidgood said. “Our team goal is to always do well at the NESCAC meet, and we have a really good chance of being competitive at that meet.”
Tufts will race next at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute against Bates and MIT this weekend.