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Another weekend for the Harvard track and field team, another opportunity to break records.
The Crimson has made a habit of setting new records throughout the season, and this weekend was no different, as the squad turned in record-setting performances at the Crimson Elite Meet, New Balance Indoor Grand Prix, and Scarlet and White Invitational.
“It was a good weekend for us overall,” Harvard coach Jason Saretsky said. “There’s also some things that we look to identify that we need to tighten up and work on as we prepare for the championship part of our season.”
SCARLET AND WHITE INVITATIONAL
Harvard wrapped up its weekend with a solid performance at Boston University, as various athletes set top-10 program finishes.
The performances were highlighted by the women’s 4 x 400 meter relay as the team clocked in at 3 minutes, 43.78 seconds – good for second in Harvard history.
In the 800 meter run, senior Gabrielle Scott finished with a time of 2:08.13 to place fourth in Harvard history while classmate Ashley Collinsworth set a personal best in the 200 meters with a time of 24.43.
Junior Allison Morrison finished second in the high jump with a mark of 1.65 m, while freshman Floriane Kameni’s 11.67 meter hop gave her a fourth-place finish.
On the men’s side, senior Nephat Maritim finished sixth in the 1,000 meter race with a time of 2:28.99. Classmate Connor Reck placed fifth in 800 meter run with a 1:51.64 finish.
NEW BALANCE INDOOR GRAND PRIX
The Crimson sent one team to Roxbury, Mass., to compete in the women’s 4,000 meter distance medley. The Grand Prix is an event primarily geared to international competition, with only one collegiate race.
The Harvard women would set a new school record with a time of 11:22.53 – good for the fastest collegiate finish in a field which set a new world record.
“It was an incredible experience, all of us were very excited to be there,” captain Erika Veidis said. “The energy in that meet was pretty outstanding.”
CRIMSON ELITE MEET
The weekend would get off to a quick start, as the Crimson would set two Ivy League records and three school records on the Gordon Indoor Track.
Danielle Barbian saw her Ancient Eight record in the 60-meter dash fall, as the senior clocked in at 7.41, .03 seconds faster than her previous mark en route to the title.
The senior was joined in the Ivy record books by sophomore Nikki Okwelogu, who continued her dominating season with a 16.39 meter throw, besting her previous record by .3 meters. Okwelogu would take home the title, finishing almost three meters ahead of the second place finisher.
The female athletes wouldn’t be the only ones to get involved however, as senior Jarvis Harris broke his school record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.96. The mark was good for a second-place finish in his first race of the season.
While the athletes’ performances were outstanding, Saretsky believes they have the potential to do even better.
“For all three of those athletes, the most exciting part, at least in my perspective, is how much room there is for those records to continue to drop,” Saretsky said. “I know that they’re focused and not satisfied with where they’re at.”
The day would not stop there for Harvard however, as the team continued to take home titles and personal bests.
In the field events, the Crimson would sweep the high jump, as sophomore Reagan Nizdil and junior Spencer Lemons would take the titles with jumps of 1.70 meters and 2.04 meters, respectively.
Sophomore Josh Whitener and senior Taylor DuPont both placed third in the weight throw, with throws of 18.60 meters and 16.86 meters in the male and female competitions, respectively.
The action wouldn’t stop there, as sophomore Andrew Roney and rookie Matthew Miller both reached a height of 4.50 meters to tie for third in the pole vault.
On the track, Autumne Franklin finished third in the 60-meter hurdles in her best performance of the season with a time of 8.54. Rookie Fiona Davis would clock in at 5:13.58 in the mile – good for a second place finish.
On the men’s side, freshman Tomoya Hasegawa and sophomore David Fan would place second and third in the 200 meter race, respectively, while rookie Malcolm Johnson would claim third in the 60-meter dash.
The performances by Harvard look good as the team prepares for H-Y-P, one of the biggest meets of the year for the Crimson.
“I think the team as a whole feels confident heading into the coming weekend,” Veidis said. “We’ve had some great performances so far and I think that everyone feels there is so much more there.”
Harvard returns to action next weekend as the team hosts Yale and Princeton at the annual H-Y-P meet at the Gordon Indoor Track.
—Staff writer Julio Fierro can be reached at email@example.com.
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