Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Collects Six Individual Heps Titles, Both Teams Place Second

relay

ITHACA, N.Y. – The Harvard track and field teams collected another five individual Ivy League Heps Champions today to add on to a first-place finish yesterday from senior Kieran Tunitvate, as well as two relay first-place finishes. The men's and women's teams competed in the final day of the Ivy League Heptagonal Championships, both placing second. The women fell short by seven points, finishing behind defending champion Penn 133 to 126, while the men finished second to the defending champions Princeton. The men finished with 116 points, their highest point total in program history, and best indoor finish since they last won in 1985.

In the field events, first-years Chet Ellis and Sarah Omoregie took home second place in their respective events, Ellis clearing the 2.08m (6'09.75") mark in the high jump, while Omoregie threw 15.23m (49'11.75") in the shot put. Sophomore Chelsea Offiaeli followed right behind Omoregie, placing fourth with a throw of 14.20m (46'07.25"). Three different Crimson athletes placed third in their events; Alexander Kolesnikoff, Kyle Murphy and Simi Fajemisin. Kolesnikoff threw 17.43m (57'02.25") in the shot put, while Murphy (15.18m / 49'09.75) and Fajemisin (12.73m / 41'09.25") both placed third in the triple jump. First-year Mayi Hughes jumped 12.57m (41'03.00") to finish fifth in the triple jump, a new personal-best.

On the men's side, Jovahn Williamson, Ryan Thrush and Tuntivate took home individual titles. Williamson crossed the line at 47.53 in the 400m, finishing first and winning the 400m for the second year in a row at Heps, while also breaking the facility record at Barton Hall. First-year's Aaron Shirley (48.60) and Gregory Lapit (49.54) also contested in the final 400m, placing third and sixth, collecting 17 points for the team between the three runners. Running behind Thrush, junior Charles Lego finished fifth with a time of 1:04.77, while Jacob McLennan placed seventh with a time of 1:05.11. David Melville notched a personal best in the 5000m run, crossing the finish in at 14:37.18. Closing out the meet, the 4x400 relay placed first (Shirley, Lapit, Lego, Williamson), crossing the finish line in 3:13.85. The relay's effort moved them into the all-time record books in sixth.

Two Harvard runners recorded points for the Crimson in the 60m hurdles, highlighted by Samuel Bennett's fourth-place finish in 7.98, a new personal-best. With Bennett's new time, he stays in third in the all-time record books, but is now just .02 away from second. Tré Hollingsworth tallied a point for the team with a sixth-place finish (8.16), while Shirley placed eighth (8.27). Senior Mike Kolor garnered a fifth-place finish in the 1000m run, with a time of 2:28.19.

In the distance medley relay, the squad's efforts placed them second, with a time of 9:59.22 (Acer Iverson, Kahlil Wassell, Kaeo Kruse, Will Battershill). Battershill had a great race, bringing the team from sixth to second in the last leg, with a time of 4:05. His anchor-leg time was the fastest time in the field. Another top-five finish was recorded in the 4x800 relay, as the group (Michael Alber, Kolor, Will Crisp, Thrush) placed fourth with a time of 7:44.28

On the women's side, sophomore Katina Martin took home both women's individual titles, winning the 60m dash (7.47) and the 200m dash (24.05). Martin's time in the 60m tied her personal best, while she was closely followed by Olivia Okoli (60m/7.53, 200m/24.44), who placed second in the 200m and third in the 60m dash.  Three Crimson athletes placed second in their respective events, including sophomore Sharelle Samuel in the 500m run. Samuel's time of 1:14.61 was a new personal best, moving her into 10th in the all-time record books. Junior Anna Juul placed second in the mile, with a time of 4:46.61, while Abbe Goldstein placed second in the 800m (2:10.13). Karina Joiner and Livia Gauntlett tallied three points for the women in the 60m hurdles, placing fifth (Joiner/8.48) and sixth (Gauntlett/8.49). In the 5000m run, Harvard went 4-5-9. Gillian Meeks led the Harvard runners in the event placing fourth (16:43.78), while Brooke Starn placed fifth (16:45.09) and Judy Pendergast placed ninth with a time of 17:26.87. Starn's time marks a new personal-best.

In the relays, Juul, Joiner, Tessa Medrano and Goldstein placed first in the distance medley relay with a time of 11:28.47. The groups time places them fifth in the Harvard all-time record book, and also marked a new facility record. The 4x400 relay placed second, with a time of 3:45.10 (Zoe Hughes, Okoli, Martin, Samuel).

Highlights

  • Between the men and the women, the teams collected six individual championships throughout the course of the meet, along with two relay first-place finishes.
  • The men and the women both placed second, the women only falling short to Penn by seven points.
  • Tuntivate and Martin each collected two titles over the course of the weekend (Tuntivate, 3000m/5000m, Martin, 60m/200m), while Martin was the runner-up in the 4x400 relay.  Tuntivate also collected the male track performer of the meet award.
  • Williamson won the 400m for the second year in a row, as well as the 4x400 for the second year in a row.

What's Next
The team will stay local to compete at the IC4A/ECACs hosted by BU March 7-8.