NEW LONDON, Conn. - The Wheaton College men's and women's track & field teams combined for 11 all-conference finishes, six event championships and three NCAA qualifying marks during Saturday's New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Championship at the United States Coast Guard Academy.
The Lyon women placed third among nine schools with 103.5 points, trailing champion Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and runner-up Springfield College. The men took fifth out of six with 51 points, with MIT claiming the title.
Wheaton captured four of the 20 event championships on the women's side, with junior Ashley Dell'Aira's (Shoreham, N.Y./Shoreham-Wading River) triple jump of 38' 11 3/4" not only winning but also setting a facility record while reaching an NCAA national meet provisional qualifying standard. Dell'Aira also took second in the long jump.
Junior Didine Jusme (Providence, R.I./Classical) won the 100-meter hurdles in 14.18, classmate Tope Waheed (East Providence, R.I./East Providence) emerged victorious in the hammer throw with a heave of 154' 3 ", while sophomore Sylvia Okoye's (Stanhope, N.J./Pope John XXIII Regional) toss of 125' 2" in the discus was also good for first. Okoye came in second during the hammer throw.
In the 400-meter hurdles, freshman Ashante Little (Seabrook, N.H./Winnacunnet) notched an NCAA provisional mark of 1:03.46 while placing second. Wheaton's 4x100M relay squad also reached an NCAA qualifying standard, as Jusme, senior Laurenmaria Smith (Providence, R.I./Hope), junior Lauren Cardarelli (Cranston, R.I./La Salle Academy) and sophomore Amanda Claflin (Pembroke, Mass./Pembroke) placed second in 48.36.
On the men's side, freshman Michael Read (Barrington, R.I./Barrington) contributed to a pair of first-place finishes, capturing the top mark in the 100-meter dash in 10.90. He also joined senior Raiyan Banaji (Mumbai, India/American School of Bombay), sophomore Ben Miklovich (New Gloucester, Maine/Gray-New Gloucester) and freshman Olufunsho Olagundoye (New York, N.Y./Cushing Academy) on the victorious 4x100M relay team with a time of 42.21.
Senior Colin Fahey (Waltham, Mass./Weston) earned an all-league honor during the 800M run, as he took second. Miklovich and Read went 4-5 in the 200M dash, freshman Ben Dibble (Salem, Mass./Salem) took fourth during the 110M hurdles, while Fahey, junior Miles Ketchum (South Lee, Mass./Monument Mountain Regional), sophomore Howard Manly (Ayer, Mass./Lawrence Academy) and freshman Brad Mattocks (Sharon, Mass./Sharon) placed fourth in the 4x400M relay.
Wheaton travels to Cambridge for the two-day NCAA New England Championship beginning on Friday at MIT.