Centennial Conference Track & Field Championship Preview
By Dennis Young
(Collegeville, Pa.) - The Dickinson College women's track & field team is gunning for its first Centennial Conference championship since 2002. They will be facing stiff competition from rivals Johns Hopkins, indoor champions and two-time defending outdoor champions, and Haverford.
Among the key athletes for the Red Devils will be:
Senior Catherine Campbell (Carlisle, Pa./Trinity), running the always tough 5k/10k double. Campbell is ranked in the top 15 nationally, but so are Holly Clarke and Hannah Eckstein of Johns Hopkins, which should make for exciting races. (10k, 6:00 PM Friday; 5k, 3:05 PM Sunday)
Seniors Ellie Mackintosh (Dallas, Texas/Highland Park) and Hannah Leahey (Mercer Island, Wsah./Mercer Island). Both have held the indoor and outdoor school records in the pole vault, where they are the top two seeds. Mackintosh also looks to score points in the long and triple jumps. (Pole vault, 1:00 PM Friday; long jump, 11:00 AM Saturday; triple jump, 1:00 PM Sunday)
Junior Vivian Butali (Fairfax, Va./National Cathedral) has never shied away from the bright spotlight of the conference meet. Butali is seeded second in the triple jump and third in the 100, and may even contribute a relay leg or two. (100 trials, 2:05 PM Sunday; triple jump, 1:00 PM Sunday; 100 finals, 1:10 PM Sunday)
First-year Olivia Schumann (Manorsville, N.Y./Bishop McGann Mercy) will be doing the difficult 200/400/4x100 triple. She comes in with season bests of 60.45 in the 400 and 27.30 in the 200. (400 trials, 1:35 PM Saturday; 200 trials, 3:55 PM Sunday; 4x100, 11:10 AM Sunday; 400 finals, 12:50 PM Sunday; 200 finals, 2:10 PM Sunday)
Junior Mary Nolte (Laurel, Md./Atholton) came out of nowhere to grab 5th in the 1500 last year; this year, she will be running the 4x800, 1500, and 5000. (4x800, 4:30 PM Saturday; 1500, 11:50 AM Sunday; 5k, 3:05 PM Sunday)
On the men's side, the Red Devils will be looking to win their third straight conference title. However, they were third indoors behind Haverford and Johns Hopkins. It will take points from everywhere to leapfrog those two teams, but here are a few likely sources.
Seniors Mike Tucker (Pottstown, Pa./Pottstown) and Corwyn Gordon (Hanover, Pa./South Western) went one-two indoors in the shot put. Gordon is entered in all three throws (shot put, discus, and javelin) this weekend, while Tucker is throwing the shot and the disc. (Discus, 3:00 PM Saturday; Javelin, 11:00 AM Sunday; Shot put, 1:00 PM Sunday)
Scoring in the 1500 and steeplechase last spring was something of a coming-out party for sophomore Ryan Steinbock (Pittsburgh, Pa./Chartiers Valley). This year, no one will be surprised if he scores in both, and maybe even the 5k. (3000 steeplechase, 12:00 PM Saturday, 1500, 11:20 AM Sunday)
Joining him in the steeple will be seniors Sean Galiczynski (Ivyland, Pa./Holy Ghost Prep) and Dave Breen (Bolton, Mass./Nashoba), who are seeded second and third. (3000 steeplechase, 12:00 PM Saturday)
Sophomore Aaron Pannell (Trenton, N.J./Notre Dame) is the top seed in the long jump, 100 meters, where he is the defending champion, the 200, and will likely anchor the 4x100.
Peter Rice of Muhlenberg is the defending Track Performer of the Meet whiel Pannell looks to possibly unseat him. (Long jump, 1:30 PM Saturday; 100 trials, 1:50 PM Saturday; 200 trials, 3:40 PM Saturday; 4x100, 11:00 AM Sunday; 100 final, 1:00 PM Sunday; 200 final, 2:00 PM Sunday)
Seniors Dylan Straughan (Bethesda, Md./Bethesda-Chevy Chase) and Paul LeFrancois (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton Academy), junior Andrew Fine (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood), and sophomore Henry Mynatt (Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest) will have their work cut out for them in the 5k and 10k. Haverford has three runners ranked in the top 20 nationally in both events; Straughan is the defending champion and meet record holder in the 5000, at 14:47.17. (10k, 6:45 PM Friday; 5k, 2:20 PM Sunday)
Finally, first year Mu Mu (Trenton, N.J./Trenton Central) will look to become the second runner in conference history to win the 110 and 400 meter hurdles. He is the first seed in the longer race, second in the shorter, and the indoor conference champion in the 60 meter hurdles. (110HH trials, 12:50 PM Saturday; 400IH trials, 3:00 PM; 110 HH finals, 12:20 PM Sunday; 400 IH finals, 1:40 PM Sunday)
All of the exciting track & field action kicks off at Ursinus College on Friday afternoon around 1:00 PM with the decathlon and heptathlon.