The USM men’s and women’s outdoor track and field teams continued their longtime dominance in the Little East Conference and New England Alliance Championships as they both swept the crowns at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth on Saturday. The women’s team won their 11th straight LEC Championship and 10th straight NE Alliance crown, and the men’s team won the two titles for the second straight year.
Each team was extremely well represented as the women’s team featured five first place finishes and the men’s team used six first place finishes to captures both titles.
In the women’s meet, the Huskies scored 234 points to earn the LEC title and 230 points to take number one in the NE Alliance Championships. Sophomore Bethany Dumas (Augusta) led the way as she collected three first place finishes and one second place finish, while also provisionally qualifying for the NCAA meet in the javelin. Dumas took the top spots in the pole vault by clearing 11’1″, the 400-meter hurdles with a time of one minute, 6.57 seconds, and the javelin with her NCAA provisional qualifying mark and personal best of 40.56 meters. She also grabbed second place in the 100-meter hurdles.
Other notable performances by the Huskies included sophomore Hannah Patterson (Londonderry, N.H.) who won the discus with her throw of 38.13 meters, and junior Hilary Hall (Waterboro) who swiped the high jump crown clearing 5’2″ ¼.
Freshman Christina Massey (Winslow) took home tw o second place finishes as she was right behind Hall in the high jump clearing 5’0″ ½, and recorded a personal best in the long jump with a leap of 17’6″ ¼. Seniors Sarah Hale (Naples), Emily Artesani (Orono), junior Tiffany Binette (Biddeford), and freshman Jennifer Durham also brought home second place finishes for the Huskies.
In the men’s meet, USM used 157.50 points in the LEC Championships and 155.50 points in the NE Alliance Championships to bring home both titles. This feat makes USM the only LEC school to win the LEC and NE Alliance Championships in both indoor and outdoor track & field in the same academic year.
USM’s string of first place finishes began with sophomore Alex Gomes’ (Peabody, Mass.) performance in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Gomes ran the steeplechase in a time of nine minutes, 42.72 seconds to take the top spot. Next, was junior Evan Davis (Fair Haven, Vt.) who won the 400-meter hurdles in his time of 56.28, and senior Justin Richardson (Turner) brought home the 800-meter crown by crossing the finish line in a time of 1:56.67.
USM also cleaned up in the field events with sophomore Orion Winkler (Brownfield) and freshman Anthony Stanton (Acton) leading the way. Winkler won the pole vault by clearing the bar set at 14’9″, and Stanton claimed victory in the high jump by clearing 6’4″. Junior Matt Harmon (Auburn) highlighted his day by setting a USM record in the hammer throw with a throw of 45.91 meters while garnering fourth place in the event.
Both the men’s and women’s USM outdoor track and field teams will be back in action starting on Thursday at the New England DIII Championships held on the campus of Tufts University in Medford, Mass.