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Men's track and field finishes all-time best fifth at Open New Englands









NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- The Bates College men's track and field team had an all-time high finish at the all-divisions Open New England Track & Field Championships, held at Southern Connecticut State University on Friday and Saturday.

With 44 points, the Bobcats outscored all other Division III teams, and trailed only the host Division II Owls (110) and the Division I Northeastern (86.5), Division I University of Rhode Island (82) and Division I UMass-Lowell (77). Springfield was the only other Division III team in the top 10, in 10th place.

Bates sophomore David Pless (Atlanta, Ga.) took another leap forward in his breakout season, taking first place in the shot put with a stunning top effort of 58 feet, 10.25 inches, more than two feet beyond his own team record in the event. The reigning NCAA indoor shot put champion, Pless's put sailed 28.5  inches past second-place Jacob Keeling of URI.

Just two weeks ago, Pless had broken the former Bates team record in the event at the NESCAC Championships, with a winning mark of 56-6.75.

Bates senior Chris Murtagh (Rowley, Mass.) also posted a personal record in the shot put, taking third place out of 22 competitors at 55-5.0. Murtagh's provisional qualification for the NCAA Division III Championships improved by nearly two feet and would rank sixth in the country entering this weekend. Murtagh was also third in the hammer throw on Friday (195-4), seventh in the discus (153-9), and ninth in the javelin throw (185-0).

Senior Ethan Waldman (Playa del Rey, Calif.) took fifth place in the shot put at 53-10.25, giving Bates 20 team points in the event. Waldman also was fifth in the discus (156-7).

Pless also took third place in the discus throw (162-4) and 12th in the hammer (171-0).

Friday's highlight for the Bobcats was first-year Noah Graboys' (Glencoe, Ill.) personal-record performance in the 5,000 meters, where he took third place at 14:51.73.

Bates also took 10th place in the 4x100 relay, at 43.50, 14th place in the 4x400 relay, at 3:24.31, and 11th in the 4x800, at 8:03.73.

First-year Michael Martin (Slatersville, R.I.) took 11th place in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, at 9:36.53.

First-year Jarret McKallagat (Berkeley Heights, N.J.) was 13th in the 110 hurdles, at 15.42.

Sophomore Ken Whitney (West Hartford, Conn.) was 15th in the 10,000 meters (32:27.39).

Saturday Results

Friday Results