The Harvard women's track team welcomed rival Yale to McCurdy Track on Saturday. Unfortunately, the hosts were a little too accomodating, allowing the Elis to snatch all the booty in a 87-53 victory.
The Crimson opened the meet in a style that would have made Miss Manners proud.
In the 4x100 relay Harvard broke to an early five yard lead. The Yale runners dropped the baton during the first exchange, immediately disqualifying themselves.
Rather than walk the final 300 yards to a guaranteed victory and five points, the ever-proper Crimson blew the second exchange, disqualifying itself and saving the guests from embarrassment.
"I've seen it (double disqualification) before, on the same exchange, but never when one team knew the other was out." commented a stunned (though privately proud) Harvard Coach Frank Haggerty.
Some of the thinclads, however, seemed intent on casting etiquette to the steady, driving wind.
Erin Sugrue squared off against Yalie Jane Buchen in the high jump, intent on exacting revenge from the only woman to beat her in the event this year.
On her first attempt at 5-ft., 9-in., Buchen stumbled on the approach. Sugrue followed, sailing easily over the standard. Buchen cleared the height on her second attempt, but trailed by one miss.
At 5-ft., 10-in., the Eli jumper's leg brushed the bar without making it fall. Sugrue, under the encouraging eyes of her father, responded by tying her personal record on the next jump.
Both women failed on three tries at 6-ft., and Sugrue was awarded the victory by virtue of Buchen's early miss.
Sugrue continued her winning ways, taking the 100 meter hurdles in 14.56 seconds. The Crimson standout finally regained her sense of decorum, though, placing second behind Buchen in the triple jump.
Harvard's Yamilee Bermingham strode to a two yard victory in the 400, pushing the Crimson to a respectfully small 33-30 lead.
The edge disappeared quickly, however, as Yale finished 1-2 in the 100 (with Harvard's Bamidele Fayemi third), 1-3 in the 800 (Patricia Defries second), and 1-3 in the discus (Mary Lawler second).
Faster than you can blink your eyes, though, the Crimson's three point lead had metamorphosized into a 13 point deficit.
A weary Sugrue placed third behind a pair of Elis in the 400 hurdles, and Harvard could no longer defend its honor against the persistent challengers.
"The outcome was disappointing. That relay [(4x100)] really set the tone for the day." Co-Captain Theresa Moore said. "It should've been much closer."