A heptathlete, a decathlete and the relay teams headlined a meet full of strong finishes by the Plattsburgh State track and field team at the two-day Cortland Classic last weekend.
“It was a great meet all-around, which I think was partly due to the weather, but we had a lot of really good performances. I’m really happy with how it went,” said Nicholas Jones, head coach.
Day one saw the relay teams for both the men and women dominated the weekend overall, with the 4×400-meter and 4×100-meter teams finishing within the top five all around.
“Having everyone healthy and having better weather helped a lot,” Jones said about the relay teams’ success. “Having a higher level of competition and seeing some more SUNYAC teams definitely helped us to do a bit better this weekend.”
The women’s 4×100 team of State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) female track athlete of the week and sophomore Elisabeth Plympton, sophmore Marissa Jones, freshman Janyll Barber and senior Ashlee Estes took second place at the meet qualifying for the All-Atlantic Region Track and Field Conference meet with a 49.99-second time, while the 4×400 team of Barber, Marissa Jones, sophomore Taylor Canet and senior Stephanie Boucher won with 4:05.68 time.
“I always love relays,” Boucher said. “It was cool that all of us could come together and do really well.”
Boucher also won the 800-meter event with a 2:15.88 time and third place in the 1500-meter run with a 4:52.20 time while Plympton won the 100-meter dash with a personal record 12.22 seconds.
For the men, seniors Sobaan Ayub and Zach Grandy, junior Brian Fabian and freshman Michael Warchol ran a 3:26.57 time in the 4×400-meter relay to win, while Fabian and Ayub were joined by freshman Jordan Kane and sophomore Anthony Ciccarelli in finishing fifth in the 4×100-meter event.
Warchol also ran a second-place finish in the 800-meters with a 1:57.38 time.
Junior Matt Jenkins ran a 32-second personal record en route to finishing second in the 10,000-meters with a 32:52.00 time.
Day two’s standouts for the Cardinals were Ciccarelli and freshman Mikayla Rossier.
Ciccarelli finished his weekend of decathlon events with a final score of 5609 points — good enough to earn himself third place and an AARTFC regional qualification, while Rossier finished her heptathlon events with a final score of 3208 points, which was good enough for a SUNYAC conference championship meet qualification.
Also on the women’s side of things, senior Heather Chapman threw 39.04 meters in the discus finals, good for third place and a personal record.
Chapman, a veteran of the team, was happy that this performance finally came around.
“It was duly waited for,” Chapman said regarding her personal best. “I’ve been here for four years, and I’ve never thrown that far. I’m pretty excited to go into St. Lawrence this weekend, and of course SUNYACs and Regionals now that I’ve qualified.”
Chapman went on to elaborate on how the improving weather helped at Cortland, and will continue to help as the season continues.
“When you live up here, it’s cold pretty much all year-round,” Chapman said. “We finally see some sun, our mood perks up and, in the same breath, our muscles get firing and everyone runs better, throws better. With the implements, you’re not holding cold metal against your skin. Everything just goes a lot smoother when the sun’s out.”
Now PSUC will head on the road one last time before SUNYACs to the Saints Twilight Invitational at St. Lawrence University this Saturday.
For athletes who have already qualified for conference and regional meets, it will mark a chance for a rest. For those still on the outside looking in, it marks one final meet to get it right.
“Those who have already qualified [for conference, regionals] will be trying to get those who haven’t to qualify,” Chapman said. “It’s really a team effort going into this last chance. We’re trying to get as many people on that SUNYAC bus as we can.”
Email Ben Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org