A cold, windy day complete with snow flurries held down quality performances and did not prevent the Blue Jay men and women from sweeping Swarthmore on the Garnet's home track last Saturday.
"This was the first time in recent memory that Hopkins won both the men's and women's side against Swarthmore and we are all pleased," said Head coach Bobby Van Allen.
Van Allen added that the coaching staff and team were concerned that injuries and school commitments that prevented some athletes from competing would hurt the team's performance. However, according to Van Allen, "The team rose above the tough conditions," and no one walked away disappointed. The men won 83 to 49 while the women won with a score of 78 to Swarthmore's 69.
"It was complete domination," commented freshman Mike Shumski. "We embarrassed Swarthmore. It was a proud day for Hopkins track and field."
The throwers led the women as junior Kathy Darling continued her impressive defense of her national championship in the discus. Junior Jackie Evans also posted solid numbers. Darling recorded the best Division III discus throw in the country to date and, of course, broke her week-old school record by over two feet with a toss of 152'4.5''. Darling also won the javelin and placed second to teammate Evans in the shot put. Evans returned the favor by placing second to Darling in the discus and javelin. Evans and Darling combined to outscore their Jays opponents 24-3 in their events.
Senior captain Moky Cheung held up the Jay's men's side in the throws with second in the shot put and discus throw and a third place finish in the javelin. Van Allen commented that the team was lucky that the discus was the first event of the day, as the athletes' hands were still warm. Afterwards, as the meet progressed, "Performances dropped in quality along with the temperature."
There were also a number of good running performances despite the weather. Sophomore Alex Gochal won the 800m in 2:01.32, anchored the 4 X 400m relay to victory and also managed a second place javelin toss. Senior captain John Apperson won the 1500m, finished just behind Gochal in the 800m and started the 4 X 400m relay with an impressive run to break open the Jays' lead. Blue Jay sprinters also ran well with junior Kevin Johnson finishing first in the 100 and 200m and contributing a 4 X 100m relay leg.
Sophomore Ben Stopper and Shumski placed first and second, respectively, in the long jump. Stopper was also third in the 200m dash and ran on the winning sprint relay. Freshman Jesse Fulton won the 400m dash and led off the winning relay. Freshmen Brian Wolcott and Pete Dixon finished first and second, respectively, in the pole vault. Junior Rajeev Mahajan won the high jump. Sophomore Dan MacNeil was 2nd in the 400 meter hurdles.
Sophomore Aline Bernard easily won the 3000m in 11:04.6 while junior Hilary Knipe dominated the 5000m run in 19:25.53, followed by senior captain Mary Stahley. Freshman sprinter Jessica Bylander ran on the winning 4 X 100m relay, won the long jump with 14'7.25'' and then fell victim to the cold conditions when she experienced a muscle cramp just as she pulled even with Swarthmore star Imo Akpan half way through the 100m dash.
'The injury appeared to be slight and we hope she'll be back into action in a few days," Van Allen commented.
In her absence, fellow freshman Hannah Bracken dominated in the 200m with a personal best time of 28.48. Bracken had also ran on the winning sprint relay and was second in the 400 meter dash with a finish of 62.48, 4th best all time by a Blue Jay. Sophomore Megan Carr won the pole vault and junior Tricia Quartey, returning from injury, was second in the high jump at 4'6''. Freshman Maureen Kimsey and sophomore Annie Colabella also finished second and third, respectively, in the 800m run.
"We hope the weather will heat up because the competition sure will," concluded Van Allen.
The teams will travel to Western Maryland for a small meet on April 10, and are preparing for their next major invitational, April 20 at Widener.