Jan. 21, 2012
BOSTON, Mass. – Army track and field enjoyed another solid team performance on Saturday as the Black Knight faced Colgate, Harvard and Brown at the Harvard Challenge. With 67 points, Army edged out the host Crimson (60 points) for the men’s team title, while the Bears followed in third with 22 points and the Raiders took fourth with five. On the women’s side, Harvard tallied 86 points for first place, followed by Brown (40), Army (23) and Colgate (10).
Highlights of the day included four postseason-qualifying marks and four times that rank on Army’s all-time top-10 list.
For the Army men, the jumping contingent proved to be the major point earners, tallying 29 of the Black Knights’ 67 points. Senior Tom Wagner continued his strong senior campaign by winning the triple jump and high jump. Wagner added the triple jump to his postseason invite list after recording an IC4A-qualifying distance of 14.36 meters.
A week removed from recording Army’s second-best high jump mark in school history, Wagner passed the bar at 2.03 meters – the only competitor to eclipse the bar above the 2-meter mark. Classmate Michael Hutchins placed second with a height of 1.98m.
The Black Knights placed 1-2-3 in the pole vault, as junior Justin Harris won the title with a height of 4.65m, followed by sophomores Christian Young (4.35m) and Mark Van Benschoten (4.20m) in second and third, respectively.
Freshmen combined for seven points in the long jump as Eliot Knotts won the belt with a distance of 6.58m, while Michael Nelson placed third with his jump of 5.71m.
Rounding out the men’s IC4A qualifiers was senior captain Taylor Kensy. Kensy placed runner-up in the 500m, crossing the line in 1:04.77 to become Army’s second qualifier in the event, following classmate Chris Jones.
On the women’s side, Army’s distance unit continued to pound the record book as four Black Knights etched their names in history.
In the 3,000-meter run, senior Chelsea Prahl and sophomore Liz O’Donnell both earned sub-10 minute finishes to crack the record pages. Prahl earned the sixth-best mark in Army history with a time of 9:56.66, while O’Donnell’s finish of 9:57.10 ranks seventh all time. Both times met ECAC-qualifying standards.
A week removed from recording Army’s 10th-best time in the 500m, freshman Katrina Donarski earned the Black Knights’ eighth-fastest finish in the 1,000-meter run by crossing the line in 2:58.95.
Freshman Lisa Junta, who ran the second-fastest 5K in Academy history last week, added her name to the mile record list, running the sixth-best time with a finish of 5:02.64.
Army also had athletes competing in a two-day pentathlon and heptathlon, with senior Christie Johnson earning the Black Knights’ top finish. Johnson placed fourth with 3345 points, highlighted by a fourth-place mark in the high jump (1.62m).
“We definitely had some high points in terms of individual performances,” said Army head coach Troy Engle. “On the men’s side we have guys like Taylor Kensy qualifying in the 500 meters and our sprints group with Jason Wilkes and Michael Hoffman. Overall our team had a great performance.
“For the women, we were up against some very, very strong teams and I felt out team scores didn’t reflect our efforts. We had an amazing performance in the 3,000 meters with Chelsea and Liz, while Krystal Onyema threw and jumped really well. She was one of many freshmen that really stood out.”
Army returns to competition on Jan. 28 when the Black Knights travel to New York City for their first meet of the season at The Armory.