The Boston University men’s and women’s indoor track and field team gave its all against local rivals Harvard University, Boston College and Northeastern University in the third annual Battle of Beantown meet at the Gordon Track and Tennis Center this past Saturday.
The men’s team finished with a score of 119 points, nudging out BC (117) and Northeastern (102) for the second-place spot, while the women dropped to last place, fighting key injuries and a lack of depth.
“On the men’s team, we have come so far &- last year we were last in [The Battle of Beantown] by a lot, and to be second, though clearly we wanted to win but it just wasn’t our day,” said BU coach Robyn Johnson. “They all competed really well and you could tell that it was an entire team effort.”
The men’s team finished with five first-place victories and 11 top-three finishes and qualified for the IC4A championships in six events at the Boston University Track and Tennis Center in March.
Redshirt freshman R.J. Page had an excellent meet for the men’s team. He took first in the 60-meter and 200-meter dashes, and in the process, qualified for the IC4A championships in both events.
Junior Joel Senick gave BU a win in the 400-meter dash, which qualified him for the IC4A championship meet and also broke a meet record. Senick also had a strong finish in the 200 dash, placing fourth with a time of 22.52 seconds.
Even though the Battle of Beantown is not a conference meet, it still has a strong meaning for Senick.
“We wanted to come out today and actually show that we are not the laughingstock of the Northeast, and today we are kind of proving it. We are doing well,” Senick said. “So actually this meet means quite a lot.”
Senior Jeff Moreau contributed to the remaining two victories, taking first in the 800 dash and helping the BU relay team squeeze out a win in 4-by-800 relay.
“Even though the score may not reflect it at the end, it was a very good team effort,” Johnson said of the women’s indoor track team. “We had a lot of team injuries. One key injury is [senior] Whitney Ford, she is sitting in the stands. She competes in four events for us, and she is in the top of the conference for two of them.”
“Unfortunately, we are in fourth place, but we have been doing well,” junior Laura Martin said. “We have a lot of wins compared to everyone else, but we just don’t have the depth that they do. So we’ll get first and second, and they will get everything else.”
Despite not being able to compete in the 1-mile and 500-meter dash, the women’s team still walked away with the most first-place finishes in the meet, taking first in six of the 17 events.
Freshman Nikko Brady set two meet records in her victories in the 60 hurdles and the long jump.
In the 60-meter preliminary race, Brady qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships (8.34). Her long jump performance also qualified her for the Eastern College Athletic Conference championships with a mark of 6.05 meters.
The BU women’s team gave a stellar performance in the 200 dash, sweeping the top three spots.
The Terriers were lead by Martin (24.86), who set a meet record and also qualified for the ECAC championships. Sophomore Jackie Dim finished behind Martin (25.77) and freshman Catherine Milledge took third (25.98).
Sophomore Shelby Walton took first in the 60 dash (7.74), with teammate Milledge behind in fourth (7.92).
In the high jump, junior Karly Neveu leapt into first-place (1.65) and teammate freshman Allison Barwise took third (1.60).
Sophomore Katie Matthews took the long road to a victory in the 3,000-meter race.
Saturday was the best finish the Terriers have ever had in the Battle of Beantown, but eyes are ahead for this BU track team.
“[The men and women] did well and showed a very good promise going into the conference meet in two weeks,” Johnson said.