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Pless leads Bates to third straight ECAC outdoor crown

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. -- The Bates College men's track and field team won its third consecutive ECAC Division III Outdoor Championship on Friday, while senior David Pless launched the seventh-farthest shot put in Division III history and junior Jarret McKallagat established a team record as well in the 110-meter hurdles.

The Bobcats scored 76 points to easily outdistance runner-up Oneonta State (55), with Tufts (45.33), Cortland State (43.33) and MIT (40) rounding out the top five teams.

Pless (Atlanta, Ga.), the three-time NCAA indoor shot put champion and eight-time All-American, saw his third attempt of the day travel 61 feet, 10.5 inches, 18.5 inches beyond his own personal and team records set earlier this season. Pless's mark stands as the seventh-best single shot put in Division III history.

Pless also won the discus throw, at 166-10. Excepting NCAA Championship meets, he hasn't been beaten by a Division III athlete since his sophomore year.

Sophomore sensation Sean Enos (Lynnfield, Mass.) nearly pulled off the feat himself, placing second in the hammer throw at 164-10, only two feet shy of event winner Pless. Enos also placed third in the shot put, at 53-5.5.

Running in the 110-meter hurdles finals as the eighth and final seed following Thursday's preliminary heats, McKallagat (Atkinson, N.H.) finished sixth overall in 14.81 seconds, tying the Bates record established by Adam Macbeth '07 in 2005. McKallagat also placed 25th in the 400 hurdles, in 57.52.

In Bates' other big highlight of the day, senior Nick Barron (Kirkwood, Mo.) won the ECAC title in the 1,500 meters, crossing the finish line in 3:52.68, .27 ahead of Middlebury's Patrick Hebble. Junior Noah Graboys (Glencoe, Ill.) was close behind in fifth place, at 3:53.33. Junior Mike Martin (Slatersville, R.I.) placed 13th in 3:55.81 and sophomore John Stansel (Newburyport, Mass.) was 17th at 3:58.71.

Scoring three more points for the Bobcats, sophomore Eric Wainman (Glastonbury, Conn.), meanwhile, finished the decathlon with 5,841 points, good for sixth place. Wainman was third among 14 decathletes in the 110 hurdles (16.07) on Friday, after finishing fifth or sixth in four of five events on Thursday.


Thursday Recap

Pless won the hammer throw as the Bates men's track and field team scored a hearty 25 points on the first day of ECACs.

Pless launched the hammer 197 feet flat, the second-best effort of his career, to remain undefeated against Division III competition this season. Enos placed seventh in the hammer with a career-best effort of 180-2.

Other Thursday highlights:

  • Junior Tully Hannan (West Hartford, Conn.) placed third in the 5,000-meter run, crossing the finish line in 14:57.40. Senior Ken Whitney (West Hartford, Conn.) finished 10th in 15:23.87.
  • Bates placed fifth in the 4×400 relay, as senior David Hardison (South Portland, Maine), junior Adam Spencer (Wellesley, Mass.), senior James LePage (Cumberland, Maine) and junior Ben Levy (Belmont, Mass.) finished in 3:18.13, just .05 behind fourth-place Rowan.
  • Senior Andrew Wortham (Newton, Mass.) took sixth place in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, in 9:36.75. Senior Graham Pearsall (Guilford, Maine) finished 13th in 9:54.35.
  • McKallagat finished his preliminary heat in the 110-meter high hurdles in a career-best 14.82 seconds.
  • Junior John Wisener (Ridgewood, N.J.) tied for 12th in the pole vault, at 14-9.5.
  • Hardison placed 15th in the 110 hurdles, in 15.09.