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Men's track and field takes second place at ECAC Indoor Championships

Chris Murtagh '11 blew past the auto qualifying mark to ensure his first trip to the NCAA Championships. (File photo by Tom Leonard '78)

NEW YORK -- Competing at the old New York Armory, Bates senior Chris Murtagh automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships for the first time on Saturday at the ECAC Division III Indoor Track and Field Championships, as Bates finished second out of 53 scoring teams at the meet.



The Bobcats scored 49 points, trailing only Buffalo State (77) for the team's best finish at the meet since 2004, when they also placed second. Rounding out the top five were The College of New Jersey (45.50), Amherst (43.50) and Ithaca (43).


Murtagh (Rowley, Mass.) won the ECAC title in the 35-pound weight with a career-best 19.43 meters, or 63-09.00, 68 centimeters beyond the automatic qualifying mark for next weekend's NCAA Division III Championships, to be held March 12-13 at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. Murtagh, who ranked 10th in the country in the weight throw entering this weekend, would rank third in the country with his latest effort.

Barron

Quinn

LePage

Hannan

Waldman

Pless

Epler

Hardison

Graboys

Esponnette

Sophomore David Pless (Atlanta, Ga.) was 10th in the weight, at 16.71, followed by seniors Elliot Foster (Coral Springs, Fla.) in 24th at 49-05.00 and Ethan Waldman (Playa del Rey, Calif.), who won the shot put title on Friday, in 26th at 48-09.00.


In another Saturday highlight for Bates, sophomore Nick Barron (Kirkwood, Mo.) placed third out of 32 runners in the 1,000 meters in a time of 2:29.37, nipping Steven Corsello of Amherst by .03 seconds.

Bates finished the meet by taking sixth place in the 4x800 relay. Junior Peter Corcoran (Stillwater, Minn.), senior Tom Esponnette (Auburn, Maine), senior Kevin McDonald (Stewart Manor, N.Y.) and Barron finished the race in 7:56.74.

Also in Saturday's action, first-year Tully Hannan (West Hartford, Conn.) placed ninth in the mile at 4:15.99. And first-year Ben Levy (Belmont, Mass.) took 12th place in the 400, in 50.11 seconds.

Friday Recap

The Bates men's track and field team had a big first day at the ECAC Division III Track and Field Championships en route to taking first place among 31 scoring teams.

Bates' distance medley relay team broke its own school record and neared the automatic qualification mark for the NCAA Division III Indoor Championships. The quartet -- Barron in the 1,200-meter leadoff leg, senior Ryan Quinn (Watertown, Mass.) in the 400, sophomore James LePage (Cumberland, Maine) running the 800 and Hannan in the 1,600 -- finished fourth overall in a time of 9:57.02, breaking the team record of 9:58.10 the same four runners set last month at Boston University. The NCAA auto time on a banked track, like the one at the Armory, is 9.56.00.

Waldman won the ECAC title in the shot put, with a top effort of 53-01.75, which he accomplished on two separate attempts. Waldman also won the State of Maine title in the shot earlier this season. Pless, who has already automatically qualified for NCAAs, finished seventh in the 24-man field at 50-05.25. Murtagh was 12th at 47-09.00.

Bates also went 3-4 in the indoor pentathlon, with senior captain Brett Epler (Wellesley, Mass.) earning third place with 3,354 points, and sophomore David Hardison (South Portland, Maine) in fourth with 3,219 points. Epler's total met NCAA Championship provisional qualifying standards. Entering this weekend, his total would tie for 20th in the country. Epler was second in the 12-man field in the shot put, at 36-09.50, and third in the 1,000 meters, at 2:43.57. Hardison was fifth in the 55-meter hurdles (8.22) and sixth in both the long jump (19-07.50) and the 1,000 (2:51.61).

Also scoring points for Bates, and thus earning All-ECAC honors, was first-year Noah Graboys (Glencoe, Ill.), whose time of 14:54.62 in the 5,000 was seventh best out of 37 runners. Sophomore Andrew Wortham (Newton, Mass.) finished 22nd in the race at 15:15.88.

Meet Results

Video of all Events (on delay)