With several key performers resting for training reasons or not running their main events, Georgetown track and field still rose to the occasion this weekend at William and Mary’s Colonial Relays, with several athletes and relay teams turning in promising times.
“We were really using this weekend as a primer for the coming weekend at George Mason, and I really think that some of our athletes showed that they were ready to go,” Director of Track & Field and Cross Country Patrick Henner said.
The women’s squad delivered two championship performances — the distance medley relay and the 1600-meter relay — in a highly competitive meet that hosted over 25 teams on each side.
The DMR was run by an all-sophomore squad consisting of Kristen Walsh, Natalie Englese, HannahNeczypor and Kelsey Smith. Walsh ran a middling time in her leadoff 1200m leg, handing off toEnglese in a decent mid-pack position. Englese moved up slightly, and then Neczypor really made a move for the Hoyas in her 800m leg, putting them towards the front with a 2:11 effort. Anchoring with the mile leg was Smith, who brought home the win with a 4:53 mark for an overall time of 11:52, edging out the William and Mary squad by two seconds.
The 1600m relay was also a promising success, with Georgetown taking the lead early and never really relinquishing it from there. Sophomore Deseree King led off, followed by senior TenilleStoudenmire, junior Chelsea Cox and then finally freshman Mirabel Nkenke.
The Hoyas’ overall time was 3:43, good for a win by one second, but Henner believes his 1600m relay squad is ready to go faster.
“Nobody really had an incredible leg here. … I think they all did a nice job. Though,” he said. “Once we get some better competition and better weather, I think we’ll be able to run a lot faster. However, a win is a win.”
Individually for the women, Cox has really started to show her versatility in the past few weeks, having run a very quick 4:21 1500m at Stanford last week and posting a :55 split in the 400 this week.
The men’s side was equally as promising for the rest of the outdoor season, with several young athletes stepping up in major ways.
In the 400m dash, freshman Mike Andre took fifth place out of 52 competitors, clocking in at 49.25. Andre, who struggled with an illness late in the indoor season, appears to be back in good shape and ready to be a major threat for the Hoyas this year.
“I think that the 400 guys did a pretty good job, but I was really proud of Mike Andre in his open 400 and 400 relay leg,” Henner said. “It was not a great day, weather-wise, to run a 400, but he did well, and I’m expecting a significant drop in time to come in the next few weeks.”
The longer distance events for the Blue and Gray showed sparks of similar promise from the younger athletes, especially in the 5000m.
Running unattached in the 5000, sophomore Colin Leibold turned in a new personal record (PR) of 14:08, which was good for seventh place of 32 athletes; he was followed by junior Bobby Peavey, who was right on his heels in 14:09.
Senior All-American Andrew Springer did not feature this past weekend for Georgetown, making the team’s strong showing all the more impressive. Therefore, while there may still be plenty of room for improvement, the Colonial Relays should definitely bring optimism for the rest of the season.
“We’ve got a lot of potential and a lot of young athletes, so it’s a very promising thing right now. Hopefully we get some good weather in the next few weeks, and times should start dropping,” Henner said.