Men's track finishes 5th in New England
Bowdoin finished fifth out of twenty-four teams at Saturday's
New England III track and field championships, defeating rivals Colby,
Bates and Middlebury but falling to strong squads from Williams, MIT,
Wheaton and Tufts. The meet, which was held at Bates College's Slovenski
Arena, was a showcase of the region's top talent in a myriad of track
and field events and provided excellent competition for Bowdoin's elite
runners, throwers, and jumpers.
The sprints were especially strong for the Bears. In the
200-meter dash, sophomore Brian Laurits finished second overall and broke
the Bowdoin College indoor record. His time of 22.38 was nearly half a
second faster than his previous best. In the 400-meter run, sophomore
Phil Webster clocked 50.28 en route to a third place finish. Though both
runners have been strong all season, their powerful performances in this
meet solidified their standing among the region's top runners.
In the middle distance events, Bowdoin received All-New
England performances from junior Byron Boots (2:00, 800-meters) and senior
Mike Pesa-Fallon (2:35, 1,000-meters). Both runners finished eighth in
their respective individual races. Boots, Webster and Laurits teamed up
with sophomore Greg Bangser to guide the 4x400-meter relay squad to a
third place finish. Pesa-Fallon also contributed to Bowdoin's seventh
place distance medley relay team.
Pat Vardaro's convincing victory in the 3,000 meter run
was the highlight of the distance events for the Polar Bears. Pursued
by MIT All-American Dan Feldman, the Bowdoin junior kicked into high gear
with two laps remaining in the race. His time of 8:33 was almost certainly
one of the fastest recorded in school history. Vardaro was followed by
first year Ben Peisch, who concluded a stellar season with a fifth-place
finish and a time of 8:48. In the 5,000 meter run, junior Conor O'Brien
dropped 18 seconds from his personal best as he finished seventh. Despite
entering as the sixteenth seed, O'Brien (who ran 15:27) set a cautious
pace and steadily moved past higher-ranked opponents as the race progressed.
Sophomore James Wilkins continued to shine as he finished third behind two of the nation's best high jumpers. Wilkins, who has already qualified for the NCAA championship meet, cleared a height of 6'09". In the pole vault, freshman Jon Todd and senior Mike Butler both earned All-New England honors with vaults of 4.14 meters and 3.97 meters. Todd finished sixth while Butler was eighth. Sophomore Tim Mathien was the first non-robot finisher in the pentathlon as he finished eighth behind seven multi-event athletes from co-champions MIT.