Archive for April, 2010

No. 10 — Breaking Is Hard To Do

Posted: 27 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized

In more than 200 Heps Championships — men’s and women’s, indoor and outdoor — Cornell’s Jeomi Maduka did something last year that hadn’t been done before (or since). And while it is very difficult to imagine someone even matching her exploits, it would seem that no one can break the mark of winning four individual championships in a single championship like she did at Indoor Heps in 2009.

And it was hardly a fluke as Maduka won the 60- and 200-meter dashes as well as the long and triple jumps by wide margins. Her 60 time of 7.47 was a meet record and she won the 200 by more than a quarter-second (24.51). Maduka won the long jump (20-6 1/2) by a foot and a half and the triple (43-10 1/2) by more than four feet.

Before Maduka’s ground-breaking performance at Gordon Track in Cambridge, Mass., 18 different Heps athletes — including herself — had the audacity to claim three individual events at a single championship. Safe to say that the Heps multi-taskers need to get to a whole new level of achievement to match Maduka’s mark.

We are now at 10 hard-to-break marks and we have just two left. The other figures thus far:
39.59—Penn men’s 4x100m
13.08—Nicole Harrison
51.56—Meredith Rainey
67-2—August Wolf
44-11 3/4—Diana Wills
20—Joslyn Woodard
18-1 1/2—Mamadou Johnson
55.46—Brenda Taylor
7,937—Mustafa Abdur-Rahim

Huyler Reports From Des Moines

Posted: 25 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized



While the Heps teams were competing at the Penn Relays, former Cornell high jumper Garrett Huyler was leaping at the Drake Relays in Des Moines. Here’s his report (and photos):

The first and most obvious difference between these two historic meets for me was the size of the stadiums. There’s nothing like walking out onto Franklin Field in front of the packed, two-tiered stadium in front of thousands of people. While competing at Cornell, the Penn Relays was always one of my favorite meets just because of the size of the crowd, the quality of the competition and how loud the stadium would get for the USA vs. The World relays.

At the Drake Relays, the crowd may not have been as large or as loud, but they were extremely supportive to all events. During the field events at Penn Relays, an athlete would call for a slow clap and it would seem like only 20 people were clapping, just because it would get drowned out by the size of the crowd and the stadium. At Drake the crowd seems to be right on top of you and whenever athletes in the field needed help from the crowd they were there for them. In a field of 14 jumpers, including 4 Olympians, I was ranked 13th and the crowd even had a good cheer going for me for most of my jumps. I’ve never jumped in a meet before where 11 high jumpers cleared 7-1 and it was one of the best experiences I’ve had in track and field. The Drake Relays will always be one of the meets I will try to make it back for despite 95 percent chance of rain for that weekend.

What Garrett failed to say is that he was one of those 7-1 high jumpers, taking eighth in the amazing field of talent. Princeton grad Tora Harris was second with a leap of 7-3. In the women’s high jump, former Harvard star Becky Christensen took fifth with a clearance of 5-10 3/4.

The Penn Relays in Pictures

Posted: 25 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized

The Usain Bolt photo was snapped by Kristen Holzherr. Joe Guty, father of Princeton sprinter Erin, took the images of the Heps runners. And I used my trusty iPhone to get a picture of folks doling out jerk chicken and then a shot of the 54,000 folks in attendance.

No. 9 — Breaking Is Hard To Do

Posted: 21 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized

In honor of the Penn Relays, the next unbreakable record is the amazing 39.79-second 440-yard relay which Penn ran in the the opening round of the 1975 NCAA Outdoor Championship in Provo, Utah. That swift foursome consisted of Bernie Gansle, Ed James, Mike Seitz and Colvin Grannum. Penn lists it as a converted 400m time of 39.59.

How well has that time stood up? It has been more than a decade since any Heps team has been within a second of it. Unfortunately, the Quakers were disqualified in the final, which was won by the Trojans of Southern Cal.

The star of the relay was James, who was an eight-time individual and six-time team champion for the Quakers. A school Hall of Famer, he was also the recipient of the Class of 1915 Award in 1976, an honor given to the top male athlete at the University. James — who held the school record in the 200-meter dash for nearly 30 years — remains the Quaker recordholder in the 100. He competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials in 1976.

His son Brent ran for Penn in the mid-2000s.

Other hard-to-break figures to date:
13.08—Nicole Harrison
51.56—Meredith Rainey
67-2—August Wolf
44-11 3/4—Diana Wills
20—Joslyn Woodard
18-1 1/2—Mamadou Johnson
55.46—Brenda Taylor
7,937—Mustafa Abdur-Rahim

Higginson Making An Epic Run At History

Posted: 20 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized

Thanks to Joe Guty for the photo of Princeton’s Ashley Higginson, who has been tearing up the track the last two weeks.

Columbia — Graduate Loretta Kilmer was the top Heps’ finisher at the Boston Marathon, finishing 19th in 2:40.07 … That was just one place ahead of Princeton graduate Catha Mullen.

Cornell — Former Heps’ 800m powerhouse Morgan Uceny, who won the U.S. 1,500-meter indoor championship earlier this year, claimed the second annual Boston Athletic Association Invitational Mile … Olympian Erin Donohue controlled the pace, until Uceny went after the lead on the last turn … Uceny explained to LetsRun, “I was trying to be positive. I was trying to save some energy in the first couple of laps, just relax.  In the last lap I was kind of antsy and I wanted to push it, just make sure just coming around one of those turns nobody could make a move.” … Former Big Red runner Sage Canaday finished 33rd at the Boston Marathon on Monday, completing the course in 2:24:07.

Harvard — Despite cold and rainy conditions, the annual Harvard-Yale duel resulted in a number of strong performances, including a number of season bests … The Crimson men had their closest finish in eight years, getting edged out by just nine points in the 86-77 loss … The majority of these points came from the field events as captain Jack Brady scored 11 points on the weekend, winning the shot put (54-4) and placing second in the discus (156-11) and hammer throws (169-2) … Eric Clayman won the hammer with a throw of 176-0, a season’s best, while Aaron Palmer led the only Crimson men sweep of the meet by leading a 1-2-3 finish in the javelin, winning with a throw of 198-2 … Andrew Bocskocsky (177-7) and Matt Polega (165-1) finished out the Crimson scoring in the jav … Other men event winners were Brian Paison (800m, 1:50.68, season best), Justin Grinstead (400m hurdles, 53.59, season best), Blaine Bolus (triple jump, 46-8 3/4, season best) and Chas Gillespie (5k, 14:39.75) … The Crimson women won their dual meet, beating Yale 93-69 … Claire Richardson (3k, 9:40.62, season best), Melissa Bellin (400m hurdles, 1:03.29), Mary Hirst (high jump, 5-5, season best), Syndie Leroy (pole vault, 11-9 3/4, season best) and Olivia Weeks (triple jump, 38-3 1/2) led the charge with event wins … Ashtynn Baltmore and Shannon Watt were the only dual winners of the weekend; Baltimore won both the 100m hurdles (14.49) and long jump (19-5 1/2) in season bests while Watts won the shot put (45-9 1/4, season best) and discus (131-11) … In fact, both Baltimore and Watt led 1-2-3 finishes in the hurdles and shot put … Meghan Ferreira (14.97) and Christine Reed (15.54) scored in the 100m hurdles while Lauren Barber (40-9 3/4) and Brianne Holland-Stergar (40-3 1/2) placed in the shot put … Harvard also swept the points in the womens’ hammer throw, led by Holland-Stergar (139-5), Chelsea Gilbert (131-10) and Ariana Saxby (125-10) … The womens’ javelin was not competed because of the weather conditions … Harvard grad Samyr Laine, who recently competed in the indoor worlds in Doha, Qatar, won the triple jump competition at the Mount Sac Relays with a large bound of 55-6 1/4. (Report filed by Mary Boggs)

Penn — USA Track & Field has announced the relay pools for this week’s USA vs. the World races at the Penn Relays and fans will definitely want to get a look at this … The men’s 4×100 lists Darvis Patton, Mike Rodgers, Walter Dix, Travis Padgett, Rae Edwards, Mark Jelks, Ryan Bailey, Shawn Crawford, Leroy Dixon and Ivory Williams … The women’s 4×100 includes Carmelita Jeter , Alexandria Anderson, Allyson Felix, Mikele Barber, Lisa Barber, Rachelle Boone-Smith, Virginia Powell and Tiffany Ofili … The men’s 4×400 will consist of the likes of Kerron Clement, David Neville, Angelo Taylor, Jamaal Torrance, Bershawn Jackson, Justin Gaymon, LeJerald Betters, Xavier Carter, Ryan Bailey and Jordan Boase while the women four-lappers has an array of talent that includes Sanya Richards, Allyson Felix, Debbie Dunn, Natasha Hastings, Dee Dee Trotter, Lashinda Demus, Sheena Tosta, Ebony Collins, Nicole Leach, Shana Cox and Ebony Floyd … The men’s DMR lineup could include any of the following: Nick Symmonds, Will Leer, Leo Manzano, Jacob Hernandez, David Torrence and Duane Solomon … And the women’s sprint medley lists Christin Wurth Thomas, Anna Willard Pierce (woot woot!) and Alysia Johnson.

Princeton — Most Tigers competed in the Larry Ellis Invitational over the weekend, but the three female distance runners who flew to California for Mount Sac made the biggest noise … In the 10k, Sarah Cummings ran 33:55.91 (No. 3 all-time for the Tigers) to win the fast heat, though Mexican Olympian Karina Peréz ran faster in the slow heat to capture the overall victory … The following night, Alex Banfich and Ashley Higginson ran 16:00.40 and 16:02.32 to take the top two spots in the Olympic Development heat of the 5K, both faster than the previous school record and among the top 10 in all-time Heps marks … Last week Higginson broke the Anna Willard Pierce’s League record in the steeplechase while running completely alone … Back at home, the men’s distance squad turned in some top performances of their own Friday night … Trevor Van Ackeren finished third in the 1,500m with a time of 3:45.29, followed by Peter Callahan and Kyle Soloff in sixth and seventh in 3:46.54 and 3:46.65 … Later in the night, Donn Cabral turned in a League-leading 13:58.24 to win the 5k, followed by Mark Amirault in fourth with a time of 14:04.61 … In the Friday night field events, Conor McCullough tossed the junior-weight (6kg) hammer 243-9, two and a half meters shy of Walter Henning’s American junior record … Keep in mind that this was with a lighter implement than the college hammer, so it did not break the 24-year-old Heps record of Yale’s James Driscoll … But that is certainly in jeopardy … Craig Pearce was the top collegiate finisher in the collegiate/open-weight hammer with a throw of 198-11 … George Abyad finished second in the discus in 168-2 … On Saturday, Adam Thayer broke 15 in the 110m Hurdles for the first time, running 14.98, followed closely by freshman Ricky Sheldon in 15.17 … Mike Eddy won the 400m in 47.76 … Austin Hollimon won the 200m in 21.46, while Sebastian Steffen finished sixth in 21.79 … Eric Plummer’s winning toss of 54-4 3/4 led four Tigers (George Abyad, Joel Karacozoff, and Pat Park) over 50 feet on the day … Dion Lehman jumped 23-10 1/4 in the long jump … Justin Frick cleared 6-11 1/2 in the high jump … For the women competing at home Saturday, K.C. Wade cleared 5-5 in the high jump while Dani Glaeser ran 57.80 in the 400m … Freshman Lauren Lewis ran 1:05.66 in the 400m hurdles and Isabel Von Loga threw the shot put 43-4 1/4. (Report filed by Tyler King)

Yale — In spite of the cool and wet conditions, both the men and women turned in some superb performances in what turned out to be one of the most exciting Harvard-Yale duals in recent years … The men recorded their eighth consecutive win in this event by a score of 86 to 77 … The men’s meet kicked off favorably with Yale running away with the 4x100m relay in an IC4A qualifying 41.64 … The momentum on the track continued as senior Alex Harris ran an 80-second PR in the steeplechase to lead a sweep in the event in an IC4A qualifying 9:09.53 … In the 1500m, sophomore Conor Dooney led the field  in a personal best 3:52.47 … Junior Marty Evans won both the 400m and the 200m in 48.63 and 21.67 respectively … In the 200m, soph Matt Bieszard was just .01 behind Evans as the two qualified for IC4As … Bieszard also won the 100m in 10.91 … In the 800, Heps 1k champion Chris Labosky, a senior, placed second with a time of 1:50.74, which was just off his season’s best time of 1:50.10 recorded the night before at Princeton … Senior Ted Galligan placed second in both hurdles events and ran a solid 53.89 in the 400m hurdles … In the 4×4, Yale won by nearly four seconds in 3:16.93 …On the field, senior Reynolds Holmes won the long jump by less than an inch with a mark of 22-8 1/2 … Freshman Mike Levine won the discus throw in an impressive IC4A qualifying 169-7 … Junior David Smith also qualified for IC4As with a shot put of 51-5, but perhaps the most impressive performance of the meet came from senior pole vaulter Eric Depalo, who won his usual event in an IC4A qualifying 15-9 … He then won both the 110m hurdles and the high jump; two events that he had never competed in during his four years at Yale … The women fell to Harvard, 93-69, yet outscored the Crimson, 55-34, on the track with eight wins in those 11 events … Senior Claudia Duncan led a Yale sweep in the  200 and the won the 400 recording excellent times of 24.76 and 56.26 respectively … Her 200 qualifies her for the ECAC championships … Yale also swept the 100m with freshman Adele Jackson Gibson, who also placed second in the 200m (24.99) and long jump (18-4 1/2), leading the charge in 12.36 … Junior Kate Grace impressed as usual, kicking away from the field in the last 200 of the 1500m to win by four seconds (4:34.50) and then returned in the 800 to win in 2:11.53, ahead of high-school-teammate-turned-rival Carlyle Davis … In the 3000m steeplechase, sophomore Anne Lovelace won the two-woman race in a strong time of 10:50.51 … Yale also won both of the relays in ECAC qualifying times of 47.92 and 3:47.59 … Yalie Lucas Meyer was also the first Hepster across the line at Monday’s Boston Marathon, finishing in 2:21:29 for 24th place … That was nine places and roughly two-and-a-half minutes faster than Cornell’s Sage Canaday … Below are video highlights from the Yale-Harvard duals. (Report filed by Murat Kayali)

Join The Movement!

Posted: 19 April by Brett Hoover in Uncategorized

This isn’t really about Heps Track, but it is one of our Schools Building Communities initiatives and it might certainly appeal to some of the students who read this blog. If you know students who would qualify or be interested in such a program, please let them know about this new program. It promises to be unlike anything out there in the education reform movement.

My organization — Schools Building Communities — is pleased to announce a new education Fellowship that will connect students attending Indianapolis-area early college high schools with a “new breed” of urban educator at a one-of-a-kind summer initiative at Indiana’s Vincennes University in June.

But we need all hands on deck to help spread the word to potential Fellows. The positions, which will likely number between 12 and 15, will last from June 2 to June 19 and will pay a $1,500 stipend plus room, board and a travel stipend if necessary.

“We are looking for select applicants who exhibit relentlessness, perseverance, and a deep understanding of what it takes to work effectively in racially and ethnically diverse, low-income communities,” said program director Patricia Melton (ed note: a former Heps superstar at Yale).

“Successful candidates will be energetic, reflective, curious and hard working,” she continued. “They will have multiple talents to offer, the ability to connect with adolescents and a passion for social justice. We certainly value the necessary characteristics of any successful teacher — zest, grit, hope, gratitude and enthusiasm — but we also are looking to attract those who are drawn to the education reform movement and the ground-breaking early college model.”

With the unique experience of serving multiple roles as teacher, curriculum designer, leadership coach, tutor, college advisor, mentor and residential advisor, the Fellows will gain valuable insight into urban education reform and earn a leg up in applying for selective graduate schools and teacher training programs such as Teach for America and New Leaders for New Schools.

X-Mester will be searching for applicants, of all majors, who are either recent college graduates or will be college seniors in 2010-11. For much more about the Fellowship and to download the application, please click here.

There is also more to learn about the program, including its highlights, its participating early college high schools, Vincennes University and beyond at http://www.x-mester.com.