The men’s and women’s indoor track teams opened the 2008 portion of the season Saturday in style with strong showings both individually and as a team at the Penn State Relays.
On the women’s side, the team posted the fastest time in the Big East this season in the 1,600, 3,200 and distance medley relays. The 4×400 meter relay team composed of freshman Audrey Gariepy-Bogui, sophomore Makalia Griffith and freshmen Kristen Mahon and Jessona McDonald finished second with a time of 3:49.62, 3.5 seconds faster than the previously fastest time recorded by Georgetown earlier this season.
The women’s team finished second in the 4×800 meter relay as well. The quartet of Sarah Morrison, Alison and Callie Hogan and anchored by senior Akilah Vargas posted a time of 9:19.39. The distance medley relay team was led off by Smith followed by Ashlyn Llerandi, Vargas and Hogan placed third out of 11 teams with a time of 12:05.40.
The women also shone individually. Gariepy-Bogui posted a second place finish in the 55 meter hurdles with a time of 8.07 and tied for fourth in the high jump, clearing a height of 1.70m. Llerandi finished second out of eleven entries in the pole vault, springing over a 3.50 m hurdle. Griffith stood out in the 500 meter dash, where she won the event with a time of 1:15.39. She now holds the fourth fastest time in the dash in the Big East this season, and her mark is just one second off of the conference leading time.
The men’s team had a strong outing as well. Like the women, the Wildcats currently have the fastest times in the Big East this season in the 1600, 3200 and distance medley relays. Villanova won the 4×400 relay in a field of 14 entries. The winning quartet comprised of Christopher Giunta, John Wilsman, Garrett Kroner and Elvis Lewis finished with a time of 3:14.08. A second Wildcat team in the race finished seventh with a time of 3:19.62.
In the 4×800 meter relay, the team of freshman Jason Apwah, seniors Mark Korich and Kyle Audi and junior Sean Tully finished second with a time of 7:39.46. The Wildcats’ second entry finished the relay in sixth place less than thirteen seconds later.
Villanova also finished second in the distance medley relay. The race was led off by Korich, followed by Penn State native junior Brandon Eck and Audi and was anchored by freshman Carl Mackenzie. This second place team was closely followed by Villanova’s second entry in the race. The team of Tully, Terence Byrnes, Apwah and Richard Corcoran finished third, less than four seconds after the second place team crossed the finish line.
It was the Villanova freshmen who stood out in the individual events. The Wildcats posted several top finishes to go along with successes in the team races. Brian Tetreault finished third out of 22 competitors in the mile run, finishing the race with a time of 4:20.78. Robert Sainvil finished ninth out of 13 in the triple jump with a leap of 14.03m. This time qualifyies him for the Big East Championship meet set to take place next month. Finally, Giunta took seventh place out of a field of 27 entries in the 300 meter dash with a time of 35.06. Senior John Morse finished eighth out of 26 in the 500 meter dash, recording a time of 1:05.97.
Villanova hopes to continue their successes in their meet tomorrow. Next up for both the Villanova men’s and women’s track and field teams is the New York City Gotham Cup. The event is slated to last the entire day.