|Manhattan Wins 2012 MAAC Menís Outdoor Championship|
LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. - The Manhattan College men's track & field team entered the 2012 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Outdoor Championships with one goal in mind: regaining the MAAC title they lost for the first time ever last season. Mission accomplished. The Jaspers outdistanced the second-place Broncs by more than 50 points, compiling 226 points during the two days of competition at the Rider University Track & Field Complex to bring the MAAC title back to Riverdale. The Manhattan women finished second behind Saint Peter's for the second straight year.
The Jaspers had a 30-point cushion after day one, and they increased that margin in Sunday's first event-the shot put. Led by Roman Ewald (Olching, Germany), who was named Most Outstanding Performer for Field Events, Manhattan went 1-2-5 in the event. Ewald's winning throw was 16.47 meters (54 feet, ½ inch), while Rokas Kirlys (Kamaji, Lithuania) took second (15.92 m, 52'2¾) and Anastas Papazov (Balchik, Bulgaria) was fifth (14.58 m, 47'10). The trio then swept the top three places in the discus. Ewald won with a toss of 51.47 m (168'10), Kirlys finished second with a best effort of 48.35 m (158'7), and Papazov's 45.87 m (150'6) throw was good enough for the bronze.
Manhattan also had a good day in the pole vault, scoring 27 of the available 31 points in the event. Brian McGovern (Yonkers, N.Y.) broke his own meet record with a winning clearance of 5.06 m (16'7¼). With that effort, McGovern moved into a position to qualify for the NCAA East Regional. Felix Siljeback-Larsen (Vasteras, Sweden) and Savio Paul (Yonkers, N.Y.) both cleared 4.50 m (14'9) to take second and third, while Yardley Keshinover (Wappingers Falls, N.Y.) was fifth (4.35 m, 14'3¼) and Matt Waldron (Lyndhurst, N.J.) took sixth (4.20 m, 13'9¼).
In the first individual running event of the day, Kevin D'Emic (Rockaway Point, N.Y.) set the tone with a gutsy second-place finish in the 1500 meters (3:53.20). Manhattan also got a surprise victory in the 800 meters, where Greg Perrier (Dix Hills, N.Y.) notched a time of 1:50.63 to edge Iona's Mitch Goose. Mikael Rojeras (Sala, Sweden) grabbed third place in the event, finishing just behind Perrier and Goose in 1:51.01.
The Jaspers also enjoyed success in the sprints. Albert Johnson III (Painted Post, N.Y.) grabbed second in the 200 meters (22.18) and fifth in the 100 meters (11.14), while Abdias Myrtil (Wheatley Heights, N.Y.) was third in the 100 (11.05) and sixth in the 200 (22.39). Johnson and Myrtil were also part of Manhattan's 4 x 100 meter relay squad that finished third in 42.42 seconds. Tyrek Barney (Hempstead, N.Y.) and Greg Hodge (Brewster, N.Y.) rounded out the 4 x 100 squad. With the team title already secured, Barney and Perrier joined with Carlos Petrovich (Yonkers, N.Y.) and Dimitri Mobley (Abington, Pa.) to grab second place in the final event-the 4 x 400 meter relay (3:18.48).
On the women's side, the Jaspers were led by their sprinting corps. Heidy Palacios (Yonkers, N.Y.), Ashley Bowman (Elmont, N.Y.), Cara Rostant (Valley Stream, N.Y.) and Ieva Vitola (Jekabpils, Latvia) started the day by winning the 4 x 100 meter relay in a time of 47.03 seconds. Manhattan then took three of the top four places in the 200 meters. Rostant won the conference title in a time of 24.61 seconds, while Bowman was second (24.66) and Palacios finished fourth (25.05). Bowman then became the MAAC champion over 100 meters, posting a time of 12.25 seconds. In the 400 meters, Rostant (55.39) and Palacios (55.68) grabbed second and third.
Manhattan also ended the track events with a relay win. Palacios, Vitola, Janie Turek (Mt. Sinai, N.Y.) and Emmy Koskinen (Sodertalje, Sweden) won the 4 x 400 meter relay by more than two seconds, posting a time of 3:53.17. Turek and Koskinen also finished fourth in their individual events. Turek registered a 1:04.30 clocking in the 400 meter hurdles, while Koskinen's time in the 800 meters was 2:13.15.
Doreen Horschig (Lumpzig, Germany) and Andrea Nyback (Koping, Sweden) both contributed points in a pair of events. In the 100 meter hurdles, Horschig was third (14.66) and Nyback placed fifth (15.21), while Nyback grabbed second place (1.65 m, 5'5) and Horschig finished third (1.60 m, 5'3) in the high jump. Jordan Rand (Colorado Springs, Colo.) earned the silver medal in the triple jump with a leap of 11.26 m (36'11½).
With the rest of the meet concluded and second place in the team standings already wrapped up, the entire Manhattan squad moved over to the pole vault runway, where the Jaspers took the top three places in the competition. Karolin Wagner (Ribbesbuettel, Germany) ended up one centimeter shy of the meet record, winning the gold medal with a leap of 3.55 m (11'7¾). Melissa Yap (Orchard Park, N.Y.) and Sarah Moore (Irvington, N.Y.) both cleared 3.40 m (11'1¾), but Yap was awarded second place because she reached the mark first.
As a team, the Manhattan women earned 181 points. Saint Peter's defended its MAAC title with 278.5 points.
The MAAC All-Academic Teams were also announced on Sunday. On the men's side, Carroll, Ewald, Johnson, Keshinover, Kirlys, Rojeras, Waldron, Tom Daly (Smithtown, N.Y.), Joe Pluhowski (East Patchogue, N.Y.), Pat Porteus (Uniondale, N.Y.), Tom Voorheis (Syracuse, N.Y.) and Billy Wilkens (Kenmore, Wash.) were named to the MAAC All-Academic Team. Among the Manhattan women, Koskinen, Moore, Nyback, Yap and Maria Jangsten (Gothenburg, Sweden) were recognized for their success in the classroom. To be eligible for the MAAC All-Academic Team, student-athletes must have completed two semesters at their institution and have a cumulative GPA of 3.20 or higher.
In addition, Head Coach Dan Mecca was named MAAC Men's Outdoor Track & Field Coach of the Year.