Bulldogs Set to Resume Competition Saturday at Yale Invitational

Mike Levine. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Mike Levine. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – After a long holiday hiatus, the Yale men's track and field team will return to action this Saturday when the Bulldogs host the 31st Yale Intercollegiate Track Classic at Coxe Cage. The team has not competed since the Yale Season Opener on December 8, also held at Coxe Cage.

Saturday's invitational is a friendly and, like the season opener, will be unscored. Last year, the invitational matched Yale up against talented teams from Central Connecticut, the University of New Haven, Sacred Heart and UConn, among others. A similar field of competitors is expected this year. 

Despite the long break from competition, the Bulldogs hope to build off an outstanding performance in their season opener. This Saturday's action will open at 9:00 a.m. with the men's weight throw, an event in which Yale senior Mike Levine—an NCAA Nationals qualifier last year—is tentatively scheduled to compete. Levine excelled at the weight throw in the Bulldogs' season opener, coming in first place by more than 10 feet.

The Bulldogs will also feature a variety of talented runners in the middle distance and relay events. In the season opener, Yale posted three of the top four mile times, with senior Michael Pierce, freshman Max Payson and junior Michele Gama Sosa placing first, second and fourth, respectively. This weekend, Pierce and Payson are tentatively scheduled to run the 4000-meter distance medley relay and the 4x800-meter relay, and Payson also plans to run the 800-meter race. Gama Sosa is tentatively scheduled to compete in the mile and 3000-meter runs. 

Yale also seeks to match or even improve on its dominating season-opening performances in the 60-meter hurdles and long jump. Freshman Adam Lundquist and senior Daniel Kemp placed second and third, respectively, in the 60-meter hurdles in the opener, while a pair of seniors—Dana Lindberg and Tommy Winger—similarly took second and third in the long jump.

Senior Daniel Jones and sophomores Dylan Hurley and Mario Kranjac will lead the Elis in the sprint events after solid showings at Coxe Cage in the December opener. 

Junior James Shirvell, coming off a first-place finish in the 1000-meter run in the season opener, is tentatively scheduled to compete in the 4000-meter distance medley relay and the 4x800-meter relay.

Many of Yale's distance runners—such as seniors Sam Kirtner, Kevin Lunn and Matthew Thwaites—will get their first chance of the year to shine after not competing in the season opener due to the recent end of their cross country season. Kirtner, Lunn, and Thwaites are all tentatively scheduled to run the 3000-meter race, the longest non-relay event of the day. 

This Saturday's field events will begin at 9:00 a.m., while the running events are slated for a 12:00 p.m. start time. The final event of the day will be the men's 4x400-meter relay, scheduled for 5:20 p.m. and featuring a Yale team that took first place in the event in the season opener. Full results will be available after the meet at www.yalebulldogs.com and coolrunning.com.

Report by Zach Schloss '15, Yale Sports Publicity