BOSTON, Mass. - The Wheaton College men's and women's track & field teams combined for five NCAA Championship cuts during the two-day All New England Championship that finished up on Saturday at Boston University's Track and Tennis Center.
The women tied three other schools for 27th place with four points out of 34 scoring teams, while the men tied for 34th place with one point among 35 scoring squads. The University of Connecticut captured both team titles.
Wheaton's 4x400-meter relay team turned in an impressive performance, as juniors Lauren Cardarelli (Cranston, R.I./La Salle Academy) and Didine Jusme (Providence, R.I./Classical) and freshmen Ashante Little (Seabrook, N.H./Winnacunnet) and Meredith Scannell (San Marino, Calif./San Marino) combined for an NCAA provisional qualifying time of 3:54.45, which ranks as the fifth-fastest mark in the country entering the weekend. Placing fifth in the meet, the Lyons were the top Division III quartet.
Jusme and Little also recorded provisional times during individual events, with Jusme twice exceeding marks during the 60M hurdles event. She took 11th in the trials in 9.07 and 11th during the semifinals with a time of 9.13. Little came in 13th during the 400M dash with a provisional qualifying standard of 58.06. Cardarelli finished 15th in 58.56, which was a mere 0.32 seconds shy of a provisional cut.
Rounding out the provisional marks for the women was junior Ashley Dell'Aira (Shoreham, N.Y./Shoreham-Wading River), who landed a distance of 37' 2 1/2" in the triple jump, good for ninth overall. Returning from injury, freshman Charmine Bien-Aime (Cambridge, Mass./Cambridge Rindge & Latin School) placed ninth during the 60M dash trials in 7.96 and 11th in the semifinals with a time of 8.00.
On the men's side, senior Colin Fahey (Waltham, Mass./Weston) exceeded a provisional qualifying time in the 800-meter run for the first time in his career in 1:53.77. His time earned him a 15th-place standing in the event.
Freshman Michael Read (Barrington, R.I./Barrington) provided the Lyons their point by finishing as the top Division III runner in the 60M dash in 7.12. He took seventh in each the trials and semis with times of 7.07 and 7.08, respectively. Read was also the top Division III runner during the 200M dash, placing 12th overall in 22.52.
Wheaton heads to New York next weekend for the two-day Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Championship at the NYC Armory beginning on Friday.