Jeffs Compete at D-III, USATF New Englands

Bates Contact: Matthew Hart

PORTLAND, Maine – Naomi Bates '14 notched a trio of top-five finishes and the Distance Medley Relay squad placed second to lead the Amherst College women's indoor track and field team to a ninth-place finish out of a strong 23-team field at the Division III New England Championships hosted by the University of Southern Maine on Saturday.

Competing on Sunday, Sarah Daly '13 was Amherst's lone entrant at the USATF New England Indoor Championships hosted by Harvard University, placing fourth in the women's 5,000-meter run with a time of 18:28.88. Participating in just her second indoor meet of the year after having her cross country season cut short with an injury, Daly's time qualifies her to compete at next weekend's ECAC Championships or the Tufts Last Chance Meet on Mar. 1-2.

Tallying 35 team points, the Jeffs were sixth among NESCAC competitors at the DIII New England meet, trailing overall winner Tufts (116), Williams (88.5), Middlebury (53), Bowdoin (43) and Colby (39).

Comprised of Betsy Black '16, Itai Brand-Thomas '15, Sarah Foster '16 and Keri Lambert '13, the DMR unit notched Amherst's highest point total as it finished second in 12:21.78, trailing only MIT (12:18.87) and beating third-place Bowdoin by over four seconds. 

Bates continued her strong season as the top individual performer for Amherst at the event. Starting the meet off well for the Jeffs, the junior notched a fourth-place finish in the 55-meter dash, placing first among NESCAC competitors in 7.34 seconds. She had similar success in the 200 meters, taking fourth in 25.96 and again besting all conference opponents. Bates' top showing came later in the meet, however, as she took third in the long jump at 5.52 meters, trailing only Wesleyan's Alexis Walker (5.60) and Williams' Tanasia Hoffler, who tied the D-III record at 5.66 meters.

Lambert highlighted the Amherst middle distances, placing fifth out of a powerful field in the mile as she crossed in 4:59.51. Rival Addie Tousley of Middlebury won the event in 4:54.15 while Williams' Brianne Mirecki (4:56.54) took third. Meanwhile, Lauren Almeida '13 was strong for Amherst in the 1000, placing seventh in 3:02.57.

Amherst's remaining points came in the relays, highlighted by 4x200-meter quarter of Abbeh Shirley '15, Jasmine Green '16, Taylor Summers '16 and Bates who placed sixth in 1:46.39, a time which shattered the program record by nearly two seconds. The 4x800-meter group was also strong as the unit of Olivia Tarantino '15, Jaya Tripathi '14, Anna Berglund '16 and Amy Dao '14 took seventh in 9:52.13.

The Jeffs will be back in action next Friday and Saturday, Feb. 22-23, at the NEICAA Championships hosted by Boston University.