Track and field competes for conference title

Jake Ulrich ’17 practices hurdles at a recent outdoor track and field practice. Union recently competed in the Liberty League Championships, and will close out the season on May 6 and 7. (Anna Klug I Concordiensis)

Last weekend, the men’s and women’s track and field teams wrapped up their regular season competition and will compete in the New York State Collegiate Track Conference Championships this weekend. So far, in this spring season, they have competed in four meets.

They started off their season on April 2 when Union hosted Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Mount St. Mary, and Hamilton for a meet. Overall, both the Dutchmen and Dutchwomen performed very well at their first meet of the season.

Noemie Bechu ’17 and Natalia Ciesielska ’17 got first and second place, respectively, in the 200-meter dash with times of 23.13 and 26.49. Justin Zorn ’17 finished first in the 800-meter run while Jesse Coull ’16 earned second place in the 1500-meter run.

Amy Provost ’17 and Maddie Samuell ’17 got third and fourth place, respectively, in the 800-meter run. Molly McDonald ’17, Saragrace Magre ’19, Bechu and Ciesielska worked together to dominate in the 4×100-meter relay.

The Dutchmen earned second place in their 4×400-meter relay with the quartet of Claude-Luvier Bonnet ’17, Logan Fine ’16, Keegan Guinn ’19 and Tim Woods ’18. Additionally, Magre and Bonnie Deyo ’17 also went 1-2 in the triple jump. Bonnet placed first in both the long jump and triple jump events.

Connor Hurley ’17 added to the team’s success by placing first in the javelin and second, right behind Bonnet, in the long jump and triple jump.

After a great start to their season in Schenectady, the teams competed at RPI, where they continued their solid performances. The Dutchwomen placed first in the 400-meter dash and the 400-meter relay, and they placed second in the 4×100-meter relay.

Bechu had an incredible performance in the 400-meter dash and succeeded in running an ECAC Championship qualifying time. The men struggled in this meet. Coull earned fourth place for the men in the 5000-meter run. The Dutchmen performed better in the field events, finishing fourth in both the shot put and the discus with Benjamin Mountain ’17 and Christopher Marina ’18 performing strongly for the team.

On April 23, the men and women competed in the Liberty League Championships hosted by St. Lawrence University. The women’s team wrapped up the competition earning fifth place and the men’s team earned sixth place. The women finished with a total of 27 points. Bechu and Ciesielska continued to perform well and earned second and sixth place, respectively in the 400-meter dash.

The women’s team placed fourth in the 4×100-meter relay and the 4×400-meter relay. The Dutchmen earned a total of 38 points by the end of the meet. Coull finished second in the 10,000-meter run. Additionally, the men’s team placed fifth in the 4×400-meter relay. Overall, both the women’s and men’s track and field teams worked very hard throughout the meet.

On April 30, both teams will be headed to crosstown rival RPI to compete in the Capital District Classic. The Dutchwomen dominated on the track, placing first in 400-meter dash, 3000-meter steeplechase and the four time 400-meter relay. Again, Bechu performed extraordinarily and earned a spot at the ECAC Championships with her performance in the 400-meter dash with a time of 57.09.

Bechu’s success is nothing new to the Dutchwomen; she has been an essential component of the women’s team for nearly three years. Since her first year, she has earned Co-Rookie of the Year for the Liberty League Indoor Season, the Liberty League Indoor Track Performer of the Year and was named the Union College Sophomore Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

On the men’s side, Union athletes placed first and second in the 3000-meter steeplechase and second in the 1500-meter run. The team next competes n in NYSCTC Championship on May 6 and 7.


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