NE-10 Indoor Track & Field Championships Preview

NE-10 Indoor Championships Preview with head coach Karen Boen

Skyhawks look for continued success in conference championships

2012 NE-10 Indoor Championships Meet Program

EASTON, Mass. (February 16, 2012) – The Stonehill College men's and women's indoor track and field teams will be competing in the 2012 Northeast-10 Conference (NE-10) championships on Saturday, February 18 at the Reggie Lewis Track & Athletic Center beginning at 4 p.m.

The men's squad had an impressive showing in last season's NE-10 championships with a second place finish behind nine-time defending champion Southern Connecticut State University. The Owls, in search of their tenth-straight NE-10 indoor championship on Saturday, scored 158 points to hold back the Skyhawks to a second place showing with 105 points. American International College finished third overall (103 points) while the University of Massachusetts Lowell placed fourth (89) and The College of Saint Rose finished fifth (41) to round out the top five.

On the women's side, Stonehill placed fourth overall in last season's conference meet with 78 total points breaking up a string of six-consecutive seasons with at least a top-three finish. Southern Connecticut State University captured its first indoor title since the 2007-2008 season scoring 155 points total. The University of Massachusetts Lowell narrowly edged the University of New Haven for second place overall by one point (113-112) while American International College finished fifth (55).

Skyhawks To Watch – Men

Corey Thomas is favored to win in both the
55 meter hurdles and the high jump on Saturday.

Junior All-American Corey Thomas (Brookline, Mass./BC High) will look to defend his titles in both the 55 meter hurdles and the high jump on Saturday. Thomas, who is also the two-time defending NE-10 Championship Most Valuable Athlete and Indoor Athlete of the Year, will be the favorite in his two events ranking first in the 55 meter hurdles (7.48) and the high jump (7-feet and 0.25-inches). Thomas has a chance to break Ivan Schmidt's (Southern Connecticut State University) high jump record of 7-feet and 2-inches, which was set at the 2004 championships, if he can match his indoor career-best mark of 7-feet and 2.25-inches. Thomas will also look to better his current meet record of 7.48 in the 55 meter hurdles set at last season's indoor championships.

Along with Thomas, sophomore Xavier Harris-Dixon (New Bedford, Mass./New Bedford) will try to complete it second-consecutive 1-2 finish in the 55 meter hurdles after claiming second place in the 2011 NE-10 championships with a time of 7.73 seconds. Harris-Dixon is currently ranked second on the NE-10 performance list in the event with a time of 7.77.

Freshman Nicholas Staley (Medway, Mass./BC High) will try and provide a 1-2 finish with Thomas in the high jump as he is ranked tied for second at 6-feet and 10.25-inches with Matthew Jeune of the University of New Haven.

The Skyhawks will also rely on their distance runners to compile plenty of points in the meet. Junior All-American Sean Hanlon (Georgetown, Mass./St. John's Prep.) highlights the group as he ranks third overall in the 800 meters in 1:55.52 and is also the anchor leg of Stonehill's 4x800 meter relay team which is currently ranked first in the NE-10 by 15 seconds. Daniel Zawalich (Paxton, Mass./St. John's of Shrewsbury), the newly minted NE-10 Track Rookie of the Week, will provide depth in the 800 for Stonehill as he is ranked fifth in 1:57.41.

In the 3,000 meter run, senior Stephen Polito (Worcester, Mass./Doherty Memorial) is ranked first among all entrants with a time of 8:29.69. At last season's conference meet, Polito finished fourth overall behind Craig Robinson of Bentley University who is currently ranked second overall among all entrants in the field in 8:37.91.

Stonehill has strength in the field events as well with senior Daniel Kincade (Brookfield, Conn./Brookfield) coming off a New England Championship qualifying and school record setting performance at the Boston University (BU) Valentine Invitational in the weight throw with a toss of 55-feet and 2.00-inches. Kincade is ranked first in the event almost two inches ahead of Kevin Peter from the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

In the pole vault, junior Luke Byrnes (Glen Head, N.Y./Chaminade) will look to break his own school record in the event for the third-straight week after improving his mark at the BU Valentine Invitational with an eighth place finish in 14-feet and 7.25-inches. Byrnes is currently ranked third in the event for Saturday's conference meet with teammates Kevin McCann (Monroe, Conn./Masuk) and Ryan Perkins (Shrewsbury, Mass./Saint John's) ranked fourth and fifth, respectively.

Skyhawks To Watch – Women

Freshman Maria Curit (Biddeford, Maine/Biddeford), who is ranked third in two events for Stonehill, enters the NE-10 championships coming off of a stellar performance at the BU Valentine Invitational provisionally qualifying for the NCAA championships while shattering an eight-year-old school record in the 400 meter run with a time of 57.46. Curit's leap of 17-feet and 6.25-inches at the Joe Donahue Invitational earlier this season puts her tied for third in the long jump headed into Saturday's meet.

Maura Ferrarini is looking to better her
third place finish in the mile from last
season's indoor championships.

Senior Maura Ferrarini (Springfield, Mass./Cathedral) will look to add onto her already successful senior campaign with a strong finish in the one mile run. Ferrarini ranks third in the event with a time of 5:08.61 and will try to better her third place finish from a season ago.

Senior Jill Alves (Whitman, Mass./Whitman-Hanson) enters Saturday's conference meet as the defending champion in the 1,000 meter run. Alves captured the 1,000 title last season with a time of 3:00.28, but currently ranks eighth overall in 3:08.17. Alves has only competed once in the 1,000 meter run this season at the University of New Hampshire Tri-Meet. Kelly Walton of UMass Lowell ranks first in the event with a time of 3:02.63.

Freshman Sarah Wilson (West Suffield, Conn./Suffield) is ranked third overall in the 800 meter run behind Amy Varsell of Bentley University and Titilayo Vanriel of Southern Connecticut with a time of 2:16.67. Varsell is looking to break her own meet record in the event set at last season's indoor championship in 2:15.35. Varsell is currently seeded first with a time of 2:12.58.

Senior Kristen Mahoney (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth), freshman Emily Anderson (Manchester, Conn./Manchester) and junior Caroline McBride (North Reading, Mass./North Reading) round out Stonehill's strong distance crew ranking second, third and fifth among all entrants in the 3,000 meters.

The tandem of junior Katie Bernazzani (Norwood, Mass./Norwood) and sophomore Katie Polakowski (Essex Junction, Vt./Essex Junction) will be looked upon to score points for Stonehill in the 55 meter hurdles as the duo is ranked fourth and fifth, respectively, in the conference.

Senior Christen Carrier (Manchester, N.H./Manchester Central) is seeded sixth overall on the NE-10 performance list but third among all entrants for Saturday's conference championship in the 500 meter run. Carrier has shined in the event so far this season taking first place in 1:19.09 at the Jay Carisella Invitational and second at the UNH Tri-Meet with a time of 1:20.56.

The Northeast-10 Championship is open to the public and tickets will be sold at the Reggie Lewis Center's ticket booth the day of the event. Ticket prices are $5 for adults and $3 for Students/Senior Citizens.

The Reggie Lewis Center seats 3,500 and contains a state-of-the-art 200-meter Mondo Super X track, an 8-lane 55-meter dash runway, and provisions for high jump, long/triple jump and pole vault. It has also been the site for a number of track & field collegiate events, including the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships.

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