Men's Track And Field Freshmen Impress At Yale
Jan. 12, 2014
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - UMass Men's Track and Field opened up its indoor season at the Yale Invitational on Saturday morning in an unscored contest. Despite just a week of practice prior to their first meet, many of Coach O'Brien's Minutemen appear to be ready for the grind to come. Out of nine top eight performances, seven included freshmen.
The Minutemen showed off their strength in distance events with five top eight finishes in an 800 meter race or longer. Freshmen Cooper Rudin and Cory Thomas scored back-to-back in the mile. Rudin completed the event with a time of 4-minutes, 28.40-seconds while Thomas was sixth finishing in 4-minutes, 28.76-seconds.
Cross Country standout Ben Thomas would then go on to take a fourth place finish in the 3,000 meter run. Completing the race in just 8-minutes, 38.61-seconds. Another Minuteman to find success individually on the track was Stephen Bigelow. The senior hurdler finished fourth in the 60 meter hurdle finals with a time of 8.30-seconds.
One place UMass has always been able to display its depth and have success is in relays. Coach O'Brien managed to put together a top eighth quad in each of the three relay events on Saturday.
Michael Fitzpatrick made the most of his first meet. He, Antony Taylor and Hayden Frechette-McCall each assisted in top eight performances in two of the three relays. The freshman, Fitzpatrick, teamed up with Ben Groleau, Frechette-McCall and Antony Taylor in the distance medley relay for a sixth place finish. Fitzpatrick ran the final leg of the event crossing the finish line at 10-minutes, 36.54-seconds.
Fitzpatrick and Taylor were then joined by fellow freshman Alex Finestone as well as Tom Mullen for a fifth place effort in the 4x800 meter relay. The quad completed the relay race in just 8-minutes, 10.17-seconds.
Frechette-McCall grabbed his second top eight performance anchoring the seventh place 4x400 meter relay team consisting of Youssef Elkorchi, Zack Hildenbrandt and freshman Deion Arneaud. The quad finished the race in 3-minutes, 26.43-seconds.
In the field it was a pair of first year Minutemen who grabbed eighth or better in their respective events. Springfield, Mass. native Lamont Gooden had the best finish of the day with a leap of 46-feet in the triple jump landing him second in the meet. Coach Jackson's newest multi Adam Bonifilio tied for eighth in the high jump with a height of 6-feet, 0.5-inches.
On January 18 the UMass will head to the University of Rhode Island for the Sorlien Invitational. The meet is slated for 12 p.m. in Kingston, R.I.
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