Emily Wernig etched her name into the record books this weekend as she set the new school record, and personal record for the discus event at the George Davis Invite in Lowell, Massachusetts. The sophomore had a monster heave of 145 feet, 10 inches. This new record is a significant 1-3 over the old record of 144-7 set by Carol Weston in 1989.

The men and women’s track and field team traveled to Lowell, Massachusetts this past Saturday to compete against UMass Lowell, Bryant University, University of Rhode Island and Brown University. The Women’s team finished in second place with 199 points. UMass Lowell took first place with 217. Wernig’s performance was certainly the highlight of the meet.    

“It’s a big accomplishment in that the record stood for a quarter of a century,” head coach Casey Carroll said on Wernig’s performance Saturday. “There are athletes on our team who wait all four years to break a record or to qualify for a championship meet, they finally do it or sometimes it never happens.  So for her to be accomplishing that at the end of her second year is remarkable.”

In order to keep Wernig more focused in her event, the coaching staff held back some information.  After having broken the record on her second throw, Wernig did not know, due to the record being recorded in standard measurement while the throws measured during the meet were in metric units. 

“She (Wernig) thought she had to hit the 44.8 meters and so on her last throw she had thrown 44.46 meters, and she was disappointed. So we finally told her ‘Emily you did get it, you converted it wrong.’ She was very happy when she discovered that,” Carroll said.

The ‘Cats were just as strong in many other events on Saturday.  UNH continued its success in the field events with the top three finishes in the high jump. Shelby Strickland and Rachel Morrison each recorded a height of 5 feet 5 inches and Jeannette Mara jumped 5-3. Sabrina Anderson cleared 11-1.75 in the pole vault for a first-place finish as well.

Lauren Perrodin and Sydney Kay continued to hold down the sprints with first-place finishes from Perrodin in the 100-meter, and Kay in the 200.  The wining times were 11.99 seconds and 26.46 seconds respectively. Other great performances came from Laura Rose Donegan, who finished first in the 1,500 with a time of 4:30.57.  The 4×400-meter relay came out strong for a first-place finish as well. 

“Overall a great contribution from all parts of the team.  They’re really progressing well into the post season which will be in two weeks.  For the America East meet we’re definitely shooting for top two and I think we have an outside shot to win it,” Carroll said on the team’s status. 

On the men’s side, freshman Brandon Allen stood out as he collected two first-place finishes to help his team achieve second place at UMass Lowell. UNH ended the day with 202 points, falling shy of first by 44 points to UMass Lowell. 

Allen proved to be an effective sprinter as he ran the 100 in a time of 11.10 seconds, and the 200 in 22.60, both for first place. A walk-on from the soccer team, Allen has proven to be good asset to the team this year.    

“[Allen] has just kept improving since he came to us in December and yesterday he had a really good solid meet.  It was a nice day, windy, so very happy and he’s a great competitor so it felt that that was really important yesterday.  He was on the 4×100 as well which I think had their fastest time of the year,” head coach Jim Boulanger said of his sprinter.

Drew Piazza had a successful day as well. He started and finished in first place in the 800.  William Ulrich also ran a strong time in the 1500 of 4:00.75 which placed fourth.  Andrew McFarland and Ryan Maney fared well in the 400-meter hurdles coming in second and third place respectively.  Michael Shanahan threw 143 feet to take fourth place in the discus and 202 feet in the hammer throw for second.

“I’m always satisfied with them. They all like to give their best, they’re a little tired and we were showing some signs of just sickness happening, [tiredness] and getting towards the end of the year and exam time and everything. They came out and supported each other and really did a good job,” Boulanger said on his team.    

Aside from last Saturday’s meet, the ‘Cats sent Daniel Johnson and Joel Nkounkou to compete in the Holy Cross Decathlon meet last Wednesday and Thursday.  With 20 athletes that competed, Johnson placed fifth with 6,215 points and Nkounkou seventh with 5,973 points. The twoday meet covered a variety of 10 events and showed how versatile these athletes are. 

Some from the men’s athletes are tentatively competing this Tuesday at Holy cross at 2 p.m., while a select group from both teams will take part in the Penn relays from April 27-29.  The ‘Cats will host a seven-team meet this upcoming weekend at home, so be sure to check out one of their last meets at home this season. 

Executive Editor