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Friday, February 25, 2011

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Baseball preview

Championship Preview
track and field teams ready
for conference championships

For the Muhlenberg track and field teams, their most disappointing moment of the indoor season was also the one that showed they were on the right path.

The Mules were all set to travel to East Stroudsburg the first weekend
Erica Bash
Sophomore Erica Bash is scheduled to run on the 4x800 team that has the third-fastest seed time. The following members of the women's team are seeded in the top 10 in their events:

Lexie Daniells 400 4th
Erica Bash 800 9th
Samantha Mayden mile 2nd
  3000 4th
Nicole Cronin mile 5th
Stephanie Carnevale 55 hurdles 4th
  triple jump 10th
Colette Faust high jump 3rd
Tara Keegan long jump 8th
Sarah Gadomski long jump 10th
Erin Saucier pole vault 1st

of February for what was to be an important meet. When the athletes were informed at the last minute that the trip was cancelled due to icy road conditions, the disappointment that showed on their faces was a sure sign that they were serious about the team and committed to its success.

Tomorrow, Muhlenberg hopes that commitment will pay huge dividends when it travels to Haverford for the Centennial Conference Championships.

The men will be looking to continue their upward climb after placing sixth in 2008, fourth in 2009 and third last year, while the women seek to finish in the top three for the sixth time in seven years.

“It’s a short season, so any competition you miss is a big loss,” said senior Chris Dolan of the East Stroudsburg meet. “But we were able to take
Marc Brookland
Junior Marc Brookland is the defending CC champion in the long jump and has the top mark this season. The following members of the men's team are seeded in the top 10 in their events:

Isaiah Vaughn 55 4th
  200 9th
Peter Rice 200 1st
  400 1st
Bobby Torphy 800 7th
  mile 4th
Michael Baer 55 hurdles 7th
  high jump 7th
Marc Brookland long jump 1st
  triple jump 5th
Seth Hershman shot put 7th
Ryan Hellings pole vault 4th

the positive from it. The distance runners met later that evening and had one of our best workouts of the season.”

The results since the cancelled trip have been very positive, culminating with the Mules sweeping the CC athlete-of-the-week awards last week.

On the men’s side, junior Peter Rice was honored for the second week in a row, and he will play a big role in Muhlenberg’s placing. Rice has the fastest time in the CC this season in the 200 and 400 and is scheduled to run those races twice each, individually and in the 4x200 and 4x400 relays.

“Pete’s amazing,” said Dolan. “He definitely brings a huge level of talent, and he’s one of the hardest workers on the team. He’s the kind of guy who’s willing to sacrifice winning an event to run four events instead of two and score as many points as he can for the team. He really has an understanding of the big picture.”

Rice heads up a group of sprinters that may be the best in the CC and will look to score as many points as possible to offset 14th-ranked Haverford’s expected dominance in the distance events. Sophomore Isaiah Vaughn is seeded in the top 10 in both the 55 and 200; he, Rice, freshman Darnell Davis and senior Derek Yates have the fastest seed time in the 4x200, which the Mules won last year.

Dolan will run on the 4x800, on which he won gold medals in 2008 and 2009. Last year, Muhlenberg’s four-year streak of winning the 4x800 was snapped by Haverford.

“That’s always kind of been our race,” he said. “It’s important that we win it back.”

The women’s athlete of the week was freshman Erin Saucier, who is tied for the top seed in the pole vault and will look to give the Mules their fifth straight gold in that event. The lone returning gold medalist on the women’s team is sophomore Colette Faust in the high jump.

Sophomore Samantha Mayden is the only Muhlenberg runner besides Rice seeded in the top five in two events (the mile and 3,000). She is one of several young Muhlenberg runners striving to establish themselves in the CC on a team that was dominated by a pair of seniors last year.

“We’re all really excited,” said Dolan. “We know we have a really good opportunity to place high.”
Click here for the championship website.

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