Men’s Track Comes Within Four Points of MAC Indoor Title

By Tim Anzovino
and Paul Rakszawski

The Minstrel

The men’s track team had a fantastic performance on Saturday at the Indoor MAC Championships, where they fell painfully short of their first MAC Championship in program history, taking second place to Widener University by a meager four points.  
“It came down to the last event,” said men’s head coach, Al Weiner. “This was the closest we’ve ever been to winning the MAC Conference [in Track and Field].”The meet, which took place at Lehigh University’s indoor track and was hosted by the Bulldogs, included such teams as Elizabethtown College and Messiah College.
“It’s kind of upsetting that we came so close and didn’t win,” said junior Brent Clauser. “But then again, we beat a strong team in E-town, and we were very close to beating Widener. I think our guys put in a great effort and gave it all they had today,” Clauser said.

Many athletes stepped up with their best performances of the season for the championship meet.

Sophomore Neal Fox was the leading scorer for the Bulldogs, as he took first place overall in the pentathlon with a school-record breaking effort of 3,336 points. Fox placed third overall in the 55-meter high hurdles with a new school record time of 7.98 seconds, and also took third place in the high jump with a leap of six feet, four inches.

Senior Mike Curry was the other first place finisher for the Bulldogs, running away from the competition in dominant fashion in the 5,000-meters. His finishing time was 15:23.

“It was a championship race, so [my race] was pretty tactical,” explained Curry of his first-place finish. “I just sat back and then made my move with two laps to go.”

Clauser placed fifth in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:00.20 and fourth in the one mile race with a fast time of 4:25.12. Junior Andrew MacNiven tied the indoor school record in the high jump, placing second overall with a jump of 6 feet, 6 inches. Freshman Wendell Phillips, a recent transfer to DeSales, also had a good day, taking third place in the 55-meter dash with a time of 6.66 seconds.

The Bulldog throwers also had a big day, with senior Ken Devens taking second place in the weight throw with a throw of 55 feet, 1 ½ inches and sophomore Jon Langton taking third place in the shot put, with a heave of 45 feet, 7 inches.

Several Bulldog relay teams also had fantastic performances, including the Distance Medley Relay (DMR), which took third place, the 4×200-meter relay, which took second, and the 4×400-meter relay, which took second place overall.

The Bulldog DMR team finished with a time of 10:44.45. The relay team was made up of senior Andrew Ferretti, freshman Matt Brice, senior Brian Filanowski, and senior Jack Tarpey.

The 4×200 relay team finished with a time of 1:33.94, and was made up of sophomore Eric Altpeter, senior Pete Moreni, Phillips, and sophomore Ben Badilla.

The Bulldog 4×400-meter relay team, which kept the team in the race for the overall team title until the very end, finished with a time of 3:33.22. The team was made up of Altpeter, Badilla, Phillips, and Clauser.

“Four points? That’s as close as it gets,” commented Curry on the final results. “Everyone did their best today, so we have nothing to be ashamed of.”

The men will be competing individually at the ECAC Championship meet in New York City this coming weekend. Following this race, the 2011 outdoor season begins. From then on, the team’s focus will be squarely on winning the outdoor MAC Championships, held in April.

“Once outdoors starts, we’re going to be able to actually practice outside, on a real track,” explained MacNiven. “We’ll be able to do full workouts, and not have to share the gym with three different teams anymore. If we lost by 4 points today, we’re definitely going to improve on that… Now we’re set up to win outdoor MACs,” MacNiven said.

Tarpey shared that positive attitude regarding the team’s ultimate goal.

“After our performance today, I think we’re definitely going to win outdoor MACs.”








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