The UConn men’s and women’s track and field teams kicked off their outdoor season at the Black and Gold Invitational this past weekend at the University of Central Florida.
After a weeklong spring break trip to the sunshine state, the Huskies got in a full week of training before closing out the week at their first outdoor meet of the season.
In women’s competition, team captain Mia Nahom was the sole winner for UConn after clocking 6:44.35 to earn the stop spot in the 2000 meters steeplechase. The 5000 meters saw freshman Chloe Thomas and junior Celia Chacko make an impressive debut in the event after they finished second and third respectively. Thomas crossed the line in 17:24.36, while Chacko clocked 17:24.52.
Freshman Jenna Zydanowicz was the front runner for UConn in the 3000 meters, producing a personal record performance for third place. The West Hartford, Connecticut native clocked 10:10.75, ahead of teammate Emma Krebbs who was fourth in 10:11.23.
In the sprints, sophomore Brianna Davis lowered her PR in the 200 meters, clocking 24.43 seconds for 23rd overall.
In the field junior Patricia Mroczkowski was the top finisher for the Huskies, after she cleared 1.72 meters for second place in the high jump. Teammate Taylor Pannell cleared 1.62 meters for sixth. Following a decent indoor season, captain Emma Chee continued to display consistency outdoors with a third place finish in the pole vault, clearing 4.00 meters. In the triple jump, sophomore Jasmine Barrow produced a career best 12.51 meters to finish fifth.
In men’s competition, junior James Maniscalco and sophomore Kevin Cawley produced two wins on the track for UConn. Maniscalco led UConn to a 1-2 finish in the 3000 meters, clocking 8:36.90 ahead of teammate Joshua Bedard, who registered a 8:38.47 PR for second. The next victory for the Huskies came in the 2000 meters steeplechase, after sophomore Cawley led teammate Christopher Lepore for another 1-2 finish. Cawley crossed the line in 5:59.58, while Lepore clocked 5:54.39. In the quarter mile, the Huskies produced two PR performances. Sophomore Connor Mahony and senior Aaron Hackett, placing 13th and 16th overall, clocked 49.63 and 49.70 seconds respectively. The 1500 meters saw junior Joseph Pearl bettering his old PR, clocking 3:55.18 for 12th overall.
In the field, Junior Travis Synder began his outdoor campaign in the pole vault with a second place finish and a 5.11 meters clearance. Sophomore Joseph Venables finished fourth with a 60.66 meters PR, in the javelin, of head teammate Gabriel Fountain whose best throw was marked at 59.97 meters. The high jump saw reigning Big East outdoor champion Daniel Claxton clearing 2.02 meters for fourth place. Teammate Kasey Savage was eighth with a best clearance of 1.97 meters, before returning in the triple jump to take sixth with a 14.58 meters PR outdoors. Sophomore Richard Kwaateng was fifth in the long jump with a 7.35 meters attempt.
The Huskies now have their sights set on competition at both the Raleigh Relays at North Carolina State in Raleigh, North Carolina and the Texas Relays in Austin, Texas next week.