April 19, 2009
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – In its final meet before next weekend’s New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship, the MIT men’s track and field team took first place out of 13 teams at the Springfield Invitational on Saturday. The Engineers had a strong showing in the distance events and won seven events overall en route to the team title.
The Cardinal and Grey secured one-two finishes in the 1500, 3000m Steeplechase and the 10,000 meters and earned 62 of its 199.50 team points in those three events. Yermie Cohen and Hemagiri Arumugam raced each other right to the wire in the 1500, with Cohen crossing the finish just 0.52 seconds faster with a time of 4:01.00. Paul Welle captured the 3000m Steeplechase in convincing fashion, finishing in 9:34.73, almost 14 seconds faster than second-place teammate Richard Prevost. Jake Ruzevick then earned first-place points at 10,000 meters with a time of 32:52.51.
Junior All-American Stephen Morton swept the triple and long jumps while reaching the provisional qualifying distance for the NCAA Championship in the latter. Morton had his best showings of the spring in both events, jumping 23-6.00 feet in the long jump, more than 10 inches better than the runner-up. He also took first in the triple jump with a 46-3.50 foot effort.
Tech’s other event winners were Greg Tao in the pole vault and Vladimir Sobes with the javelin. Tao led a sweep of the one through four positions in the vault, clearing 14-2.75 feet. Cyrus Vafadari, Nate Sharpe and Davey Hunt rounded out the top four. Sobes won his event with a throw of 176-8.00 feet.
MIT’s overall depth was too much for second-place Westfield State to overcome, as the Engineers outscored the Owls 199.50-129. Host Springfield College finished in third with 98.50 points.
The Cardinal and Grey will look to secure its ninth straight NEWMAC Championship next Saturday. The meet, hosted by Mount Holyoke College, begins at 11:00 a.m.