The PSUC track and field team had a standout weekend at the Ithaca Bomber Invitational last weekend.
There was no team scoring, but the Cardinals did manage to get seven ECAC qualifying marks across the board.
Head Coach Nick Jones was happy overall with the team’s performance.
“We had some pretty good performances,” Jones said. “Some people still need to improve on some things before we head into the championship part of the season, but it went pretty well.”
On the men’s side, some veterans picked up the slack this week. Senior Ethan Vinson picked up his ECAC qualifying time while finishing 5th in the 800 meters. Senior Kyle Jones finished 4th in the 400 meters to snag his first ECAC time, while also getting one in the 4×400 meters as part of the combination of himself, junior Ben Wells, sophomore Brian Fabian, and junior Sobaan Ayub who finished 5th in that event.
But the story of the weekend on the men’s side was undoubtedly senior Eric Denny. While competing in the heptathlon on day one, he got his first ECAC qualifier in the long jump with his 3rd place finish in that event. Then his 5th place finish in the heptathlon as a whole was good for another ECAC qualification, as well as his score of 4,703 points being the new record for the PSUC track and field program.
Coach Jones was extremely impressed with Denny’s performance.
“Denny had a great weekend, I think his mark is now 9th in the country (in the heptathlon),” Jones said. “He’s still got the conference championship to improve his point total, so we’ll see what happens.”
On the women’s side, it was much of the same, with several more veteran runners having good weekends.
Senior Stephanie Boucher snagged her ECAC qualifying time in the 800 meters, finishing 2nd out of 67 runners. It was her best time of the season, and the 7th best in Division III.
Fellow senior Lauren Perschetz was the women’s other ECAC qualifier, with her 3rd place finish in the 3000 meters.
Jones was happy with both seniors’ performances.
“It was good, Steph (Boucher) improved her mark in the country,” Jones said. “It was a good tune-up going into this weekend at Boston University, and Lauren also did very well.”
Perschetz was also satisfied with her times.
“I was happy with it,” Perschetz said. “I ran (the same time) in NYC a few weeks ago but the track was banked so I had some time added, so to run basically the same time again and not get time added was nice.”
Junior Lindsey Davenport also had a strong weekend, slotting in as the 8th finisher in the mile, while also getting 25th in the 800 meters.
Her thoughts on the team overall echoed those of her coach.
“The meet lasted a bit longer than we all expected, but everyone kept it together,” Davenport said. “Everyone still did their best, and we got some really good results.
Now, PSUC swings into the final days of the indoor season with two invitational meets before SUNYACs. Davenport was confident in the team’s mindset as the meets get tougher though.
“We’re just going to keep getting stronger, and keep doing what we’re doing,” Davenport said. “Boston’s coming up this weekend, and there will be a lot of good competition there.”
Jones’ thoughts lined up with those of his runner.
“It’s time to run fast,” Jones said. “We’re focusing on quality, and not spreading anybody too thin by doing too many events. We should have a pretty good weekend, we usually have good performances at this meet.”
The Cards’ next meet will be the Valentine Invitational, hosted by Boston University on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 10-11.
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