Wildcats perform well in New York

Jamie Augustinsky

After competing in the NYC Gotham Cup at the Armory Track in New York City two weekends ago, the men’s and women’s track and field teams traveled to the Big Apple again this past weekend to take part in the Albany Great Dane Classic.

The ‘Cats competed against numerous other schools in the meet, which featured 18 scored events for both the men and the women. The men’s team finished 27th of 29 teams with a final score of two points, while the women earned 13.75 points, a score good enough to rank them 16th out of 30.

Scoring for the women’s team got started in the 55-meter hurdles where freshman Shericka Ward finished fourth in the finals with a time of 8.31 seconds, earning five points for the Wildcats. Her time of 8.29 seconds in the preliminaries was just good enough to qualify her for the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships.

In the 55-meter dash, it was Ward again who accumulated a few more points for the team. Her time of 7.28 seconds in the preliminaries qualified her for the finals, where she ran 7.37 seconds and gained two points in her seventh-place finish.

Sophomore Kaitlin O’Sullivan and senior Logan Schrader finished 22nd and 27th in the women’s one-mile run with times of 5:31.58 and 5:40.33, respectively.

In the women’s 400-meter run, freshman Christie Verdier finished 25th with a time of 1:00.42, and senior Elliot Whaley finished the men’s 400-meter run with a time of 53.12.

Sophomore Christopher Kearney missed qualifying for the men’s 500-meter run finals by only a few 10ths of a second, as his time of 1:05.59 placed him 12th in the preliminaries.

In the women’s 800-meter run, sophomore Meaghan Higgins finished with a time of 2:25.72 to put her in 18th place in the event, while senior Brandon Eck’s time of 2:01.78 placed him 25th in the same event on the men’s side.

The men’s team got on the board in the 1000-meter run when sophomore Mark Hogan finished in 2:32.86, a time good enough for seventh place in the event and two points.

Four Villanova women ran in the 200-meter dash. Ward placed 11th, junior Mary Kate Phelan finished 14th, freshman Verdier ran to an 18th place finish, and freshman Ashley Dunbar earned a 22nd place finish. In the same event for the men, Whaley finished 24th and sophomore Stefan Goodridge earned a 32nd place finish.

The women gained the rest of their points in the pole vault, where sophomores Ashlyn Llerandi and Kelly Hannan earned five points and 0.75 points, respectively. Llerandi cleared 3.60 meters, a vault good enough to put her in a fourth place finish and qualify her for the ECAC Championships. Hannan cleared 3.45 meters in her result and tied with three other athletes for seventh place in the event. Freshman Melissa Meggiolaro finished 11th in the event. Their performances were considered promising signs with the Big East Championships now less than a month away.

The remaining athletes to compete were senior Bryan Harris in the men’s pole vault, sophomore Erica Reijula who finished 27th in the women’s long jump, senior Jacqueline Christi who finished 22nd in the women’s triple jump, and junior Matt Ratigan who cleared 14.08m in the men’s shot put to earn a 14th place finish.

Both teams will travel to State College, Pa., to compete in the Penn State National Invitational on tomorrow. It will be their next to last meet before the Willdcats will compete in the Big East Championships on Feb. 21-22.