March 2, 2014

Meet records fall for Fords at Centennial championship

HAVERFORD, Pa. – The two day Centennial Conference 2014 Indoor Track & Field Championship concluded Sunday at Haverford College's Gary Lutnick Tennis & Track Center, and the host Fords finished in second place in the team race while winning gold in several events including three championship-meet records.

Johns Hopkins University won the team title accumulating 204 points with runner-up Haverford registering 138 points. Dickinson College was third with 104 points.

The day began early with the final three events of the two-day men's heptathlon. The Fords' Jeffrey Ainsley got the ball rolling -- quickly -- by racing to a school record in the 60-meter hurdle event in the heptathlon, posting a first-place time of 8.42 seconds.

Ainsley was second in the final two events, the pole vault and the 1,000-meter run, finishing with a two-day total of 4,482 points which breaks the school record he set earlier this season. Ainsley's record numbers fell just shy of a heptathlon victory Sunday as Hopkins' Michael Spadoro earned the gold with 4,552 points.

Ainsley's day wasn't over, though, as he also competed in the high jump, 60m high hurdles, and the 200-meter dash. The sophomore won the hurdles in 8.61 seconds and was fourth in the high jump, clearing a best height of 1.85 meters (6 feet, 0.75 inches). He finished sixth (23.44) in the 200.

The distance medley relay opened the afternoon portion of the schedule and Haverford's quartet of Soren Rasmussen, Cormac Rada, Chris Gardner and Sam Fujimori powered to a winning time of 10 minutes, 29.87 seconds, breaking the first of three meet records on the day for the Fords.

Shortly thereafter, Charlie Marquardt set a meet record in winning the mile run for Haverford. Marquardt clocked a first-place time of 4:14.03 and was joined in the top eight by teammates Michael Brier (sixth, 4:28.24) and Brian Sokas (seventh, 4:28.70).

Jonathan Yellets kept the winning ways going for the Fords as he won the 400 in a time of 51.52 seconds.

After Ainsley's hurdles win Marquardt was back on the oval, this time in the 800 where he and Gebby Keny earned top-eight places to add to Haverford's point total. Marquardt was fourth (1:56.38) and Keny was sixth (1:58.99).

Yellets joined Ainsley in the 200 with Yellets edging out his teammate for a third-place time of 23.16 seconds.

Haverford fell 0.02 seconds away from sweeping the final individual event on the schedule, the 3,000.

Christopher Stadler -- Saturday's winner of the 5,000, in meet-record time -- made it two in a row, winning the 3,000 with a meet-record time of 8:33.12. Avi Bregman (8:35.27) gave the Fords a 1-2 finish with the Fords' David Roza coming in fourth, a hair's breath behind Hopkins' Max Robinson who was third in a time of 8:38.88.

The final two events of the day were a pair of relays, the 4x800 and 4x400.

Marquardt anchored the 4x800 for Haverford and made a pass entering the final turn of the race to take over the lead, then held off Franklin & Marshall College's anchor to win the event in a meet-record time of 7:55.59. Keny, Rada and Rasmussen preceded Marquardt in the gold-medal winning relay.

Dorvil Gabriel, Gardner, Alex Frost and Sam Callon closed out the meet for the Fords with a sixth-place finish in the 4x400.

Several of Haverford's athletes look to continue their season at the NCAA Division III 2014 indoor championship on March 14-15 at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, Neb.