Track picks up individual wins at Big East meet

Kyle Scudilla

Villanova’s men’s track finished fourth, while the women placed fifth, in the 2005 Big East Conference Championships this weekend.

The meet, held in Syracuse University’s Carrier Dome, did yield some individual successes for the Wildcats. Junior Marina Muncan won two Big East titles for the women’s squad. She picked up a victory in the 1,000 meter run, clocking in at 2:49.13, outpacing her closest competitor by almost three seconds. Her other win on the day came in the mile run, with a time of 4:50.17.

Teammate Ioana Parusheva came in third behind Muncan and West Virginia’s Stephanie Madia, with a time of 4:52.54. Senior Monique Morgan earned her first career Big East title while participating in the 60 meter hurdles. She won the event over Connecticut’s April Garner with a time of 8.42.

The 4×800 meter relay squad teamed up to easily outdistance second-place Georgetown, pulling ahead by six seconds. Their winning time was 8:53.34. Villanova’s women also earned second place finishes in the 800 meter run (Colleen Taylor) and the 500 meter dash (Arusha McKenzie).

On the men’s side, sophomore Drew Eckman came away with first place status in the 500 meter dash. Eckman defeated Rutgers’ runner Ryan Westman, with a time of 1:02.38.

The 4×800 meter relay team duplicated their female counterparts’ accomplishment by taking first place honors, with a time of 7:37.84.

The 4×400 team placed second in their event. Senior Ryan Hayden also earned a second place finish in the 1,000 meter run. Meanwhile, sophomore Mark Korich placed third in the 800 meter run.

Notre Dame was the big winner on the men’s side, scoring 182 points as a team to capture the Big East Championship. The Fighting Irish picked up their second win in three years, having also won in 2003. Rutgers finished second with 168.50 points, ahead of Pittsburgh (98 points), Georgetown (77 points) and Villanova, who placed fifth with 75 points.

In the women’s competition, Pittsburgh earned a total of 161.50 points to win the conference title. The Panthers last two conference wins came in 1989 and 1999. Their top competition on the weekend came from Notre Dame (140 points), Georgetown (90 points) and Villanova’s fourth place effort with a total of 84 points.

The men’s and women’s track and field teams will both be headed to Boston on March 5 to participate in the IC4A / ECAC Championships. The following Monday and Tuesday, Villanova travels to the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. to run in the Alex Wilson Invitational.