Most Recent Meet
Penn Relays & NESCAC Championships
Performers of the Meet - Vernon Espinoza, Brent Harrison, Chris Butko and Thomas Matthew
Last week was certainly one of the busiest and most exciting times for Amherst Track & Field, as we had the great responsibility of putting on the 2016 NESCAC Outdoor Championship. In addition, we would also send Mohamed Hussein down to the famous Penn Relays to go up against a strong field of collegiate and post-collegiate athletes in the 10,000m. Starting off a big and exciting weekend on Thursday night, Mohamed would line up on Franklin Field against a large, competitive field for the Men’s 10,000 shortly before midnight. A little over twenty-four hours later, we would be kicking off the 2016 NESCAC Championship under gorgeous skies and at our home track. Our day would begin with the trio of Dan Crowley, Justin Barry, and Tucker Meijer in the 10,000m. Crowley would be the top finisher for the squad, as he sat in the lead pack for a majority of the race and finished in 5th place with a time of 31:23.1. Justin would take 19th with a time of 32:56.6 and Tucker was right behind 20th with a time of 33:14.7. Moving down to the 100m trials, Thomas Matthew would lead the way with a PR of 11.20 in the trials and an 11.24 in the finals to place 6th overall. Aziz Khan clocked in at 11.31 to take 13th and Hasani Figueroa ran 11.64 for 24th. Later on in the day, we would see Aziz run 22.64 in the 200 and Harrison Haigood clock in at 23.56. Closing out the morning portion of the meet would be Jeff Seelaus in the steeplechase. Getting out well and smoothly, Jeff would remain on the leaders shoulder for a large portion of the race. Despite falling off the lead, Seelaus hung tough and came home to finish 3rd in a new PR of 9:30.80.
Our afternoon would get underway with some 4x100 action and the quartet of Khalil Flemming, Aziz Khan, David Ingraham, and Thomas Matthew, who would get the baton around the track in 43.55 and earn a 7th place finish after they won thier section of the relay. In the 1500m, our crew would be lead by Jesse Fajnzylber’s performance of 4:04.98. Jack Wesley was right behind in 4:05.21 and Steven Lucey closed it out with a 4:10.62. Moving on to the 400m, Vernon Espinoza would throw down a quick personal best of 50.20 to finish 12th overall. David Ingraham was not too far back with his season best of 50.94 and Jay Drain rounded it out with a 54.9. Next up on the track would be the 800m and we would have Ermias Kebede, Jacob Silverman, Kristian Sogaard, Chris Butko, and Brent Harrison all chasing after fast times. In the early sections, we would see Ermias and Silverman put up times of 1:59.3 and 1:59.7 - with Ermi coming through the first 600 in a blazing 1:24 before the bear jumped upon his back in the homestretch. In the second fastest section, Brent Harrison would throw down in the final 200m to put up a new personal best of 1:52.71to win his heat and eventually finish 7th overall. Kristian Sogaard finished in 1:57.3 to take 16th overall. In the loaded seeded section, Chris Butko would have the difficult task of defending his home track against some of the nations best 800m runners. As the race came through the 400m in 54, Butko would bide his time behind the two leaders until the final 150m. At that time, Chris swung wide to try and secure a victory. Despite a valiant effort down the homestretch, Butko would come just short of the win to take a very hard fought 4th place and put up a big new personal best of 1:51.98 which also currently sits him at 15th in the country. While those on the track were getting it done under ideal conditions, Khalil Flemming was taking his final jumps on the home pit as he would hit 6 meters in the long jump and then made the finals in the triple jump with his 12.98 jump that would earn him a 9th place finish. In the shot put circle TMatt would finish in 13th place with a throw of 12.43 while Sam Amaka just missed breaking the 12 meter mark en route to his 16th place finish.
Nearing the end of the day, Mohamed Hussein would return from his 10K on Thursday night to run 14:50.9 in the 5K and finish 3rd overall. Joining Mo in the 5000m, was Craig Nelson and Cosmo Brossy who both fought well in the crowded, competitive field and ran times of 15:08 and 15:11 for 9th and 10th. Peter Horton also competed in the 5,000m and ran 16:00.9. Closing out our 2016 NESCAC Championship would be strong efforts from both our 4x400 and 4x800 relay squads. In the 4x4, we would have David Ingraham, Ermias Kebede, Vernon Espinoza, and Kristian Sogaard, put up a respectable 3:24.38 to take 6th overall. Our 4x8 consisted of Jesse Fajnzylber, Jeff Seelaus, Chris Butko, and Brent Harrison, which resulted in a 7:47.49 and 4th place finish. At the end of the day, the Amherst men would put up a total of 36 points to finish in a respectable 6th place overall. We were certainly pleased with the effort displayed by the team and we definitely enjoyed the fruits of our labor post meet with the wonderful spread provided by all the parents and family members. We now shift our focus to another week of working hard and getting ready to put up fast times and big marks at next weekend’s D3 New England Champs at Springfield College!
In addition to preparing for the hosting of our conference championships here at home, we would also send Mohamed Hussein down to the famous Penn Relays to go up against a strong field of collegiate and post-collegiate athletes in the 10,000m. Starting off a big and exciting weekend on Thursday night, Mohamed would line up on Franklin Field against a large, competitive field for the Men’s 10,000 shortly before midnight. Getting out comfortably, Mo would latch onto the lead pack and begin to click of 71s for the first half. Coming through halfway in 14:55, Mo would continue to look strong until around 7,000m where he would lose the lead pack and fall slightly off pace as he came through the 8k in a 23:56 and still on pace for a sub 30 minute finish. He would continue to make strong moves in the last mile and eventually come home in a big PR of 30:05.88 to easily secure a ticket to NCAAs at the end of this month. No rest for the weary though, as he finished his race right around midnight and then was time to focus on the 5k on Saturday at NESCAC's