February 3, 2012

Engineers Compete at Beantown Classic

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – MIT's nationally-ranked No. 6 women's track and field team took on Division I rivals from Harvard University, Boston University and the University of Northeastern in the Battle of Beantown on Friday, finishing third out of the four squads. The Engineers managed to post some impressive individual performances among the competitive field.

Perhaps the most impressive performance of the meet belonged to the MIT pole vaulters, as junior Lauren Kuntz (Pittsburgh, Pa.) and freshman Joanna Chen (Richland, Mich.) achieved season-best marks in the event. Kuntz cleared the bar at 11-11.75 feet to earn second place in the event and improve upon her own sixth-best mark nationally. Chen recorded a new personal best by vaulting 10-11.75 feet, finishing fifth overall.

At 800 meters, three Tech runners were able to set a personal best, posting three of the top seven times in program history. Freshman Cindy Huang (San Jose, Calif.) was the first across the finish with an MIT rookie record time of 2:17.84. Sophomore Alexandra Taylor (Harbor Springs, Mich.) was right behind Huang in 2:19.79 and freshman Margaret Coad (Arlington, Va.) rounded out the group with a personal-best time of 2:20.20.

Senior Portia Jones (New York, N.Y.) ran a pair of solid races taking second in both the 200m with a time of 25.17 and the 400m with a time of 57.13 seconds. While not even a season best, her time in the 400 would be good for the third best in Division III this season.

The 4x400 relay squad made up of Jones, senior Jamie Simmons (Carlsbad, Calif.), sophomore Jacqueline Brew (Amherst, N.H.) and freshman Madeleine Bairey (Pebble Beach, Calif.) posted a season-best time of 3:57.26, good for third best in the NCAA on the year.

The distance medley relay also recorded a season-best time, as Huang, sophomore Brooke Johnson (Shoreham, N.Y.), senior Martha Gross (Short Hills, N.J.) and junior Marie Burkland (Almont, Mich.) finished in third place with a time of 12:42.07, this year's third fastest in Division III.

Tech will compete at the Valentine Invitational next weekend at Boston University while also hosting its second Coed Invite of the season. The pair of invitational meets mark the final competition for the Cardinal and Gray before the New England Division III championship in two weeks.