Black Bears tackle the Valentine Invitational

The University of Maine men and women’s track and field team traveled to Boston University on Friday to compete in the David Hemery Valentine Invitational, where over thirty different teams were represented.

Though there weren’t a large number of Black Bear athletes competing in the meet, it was important for those who were as the invitational was the final meet before championships. With just two weeks to go before conference championships, it was a chance for runners, jumpers and throwers to build some momentum before heading to Boston for America East bragging rights.

Fourth-year Jesse Orach led the Black Bears on the men’s side, setting a new school record for the 5000 meter run with a time of 14:13.96 — good for fifth place in the event. Orach continues to lead the Black Bears’ distance effort and is someone to watch in two weeks, as he is a favorite to stand atop the podium in the conference championships.

In the 60-meter dash, third-year Benjamin Davis finished in 27th place with a time of 7.11. Stephen Headley of Boston-North won the event with a time of 6.74. Davis also finished 83rd in the 200 meter dash with a time of 22.62. Carrington Akosa of Princeton came in first with a time of 21.39.

On the women’s side it was second-year Ariel Clachar leading the Black Bears in the 60-meter dash. Clachar finished in 19th place with a time of 7.92. Clachar was followed closely by two teammates, second-year Lauren Magnuson and first-year Cassidy Hill, who finished in 29th and 31st place respectively. Nikia Squire of Queens won the event with a time of 7.47.

Magnuson finished in 17th place in the 200-meter dash with a time of 25.07 — less than two seconds behind first place Carly Muscaro of Merrimack.

In field events, Clachar finished in seventh place in the long jump with a top jump of 5.68 meters. Squire again topped the event with a jump of 6.14 meters.

Maine third-year Rachel Bergeron finished in 28th  place in the shot put with a throw of 11.78 meters. In the weight throw, Bergeron finished in 8th with a throw of 16.78 meters. Tynelle Gumbs of the University of Findlay won the weight throw with a toss of 21.32 meters — over three meters further than the second place finisher.

Fourth-year Jeremy Frantz led the men’s team with a 12th place finish in the shot put. His best throw tallied 15.26 meters. First-year Isaiah Brooks finished in 24th place with a 14.05 meter throw. Ben Hahler of the University of Findlay won the event with a throw of 17.59 meters.

In the weight throw, Maine saw an 18th place finish and a 27th place finish as first-year Shane Corbett had a throw of 16.02 meters and Brooks had a 15.40 meter throw. Owen Russell of Brown University won the event with a throw of 19.56 meters.

The Black Bears return to action on February 24th for the America East Championships, which will be held in Boston.

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