NEW HAVEN, Conn.— The Yale men's track and field team will host the Yale Season Opener at Coxe Cage next Saturday, Dec. 9, to begin the 2017-18 season. The Bulldogs welcomed 11 first years to their program this year, and the upcoming meet will serve as the collegiate debut for many of them.
The Elis had six athletes qualify for the 2017 NCAA East Preliminary Round, and four of them will be returning to action for the upcoming indoor and outdoor seasons. Senior team captain Paedyn Gomes is coming off a remarkable junior outing, winning an Ivy Heps Indoor title in the 60 meter hurdles, earning runner-up honors in the 100 meter hurdles at Ivy Heps Outdoors and competing in the 100 meter hurdles at the NCAA East Preliminary Round. Junior Trevor Reinhart was the sole Eli to compete at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships last season, running the 1500 meter run, and has proven himself to be a valuable asset to the distance squad coming off a First Team All-Ivy performance at the 2017 Ivy Heps Cross Country Championships. The other two returnees who competed at the NCAA East Preliminary Round are senior cross country captain Adam Houston and junior pole vaulter Austin Laut.
Below is a preview of the Elis' season, grouped by event:
Austin Laut, who placed 39th at the NCAA East Preliminaries in the pole vault last year, will be a key athlete this season for the jumps squad. Aside from Laut, seniors Mike Koller and Carl Mansson will be looking to lead the jumpers to strong finishes this year, with Koller specializing in the high jump and Mansson in the horizontal jumps. Junior high-jumpers Cody Clements and CJ McCord, and horizontal jumper Jimmy Shih are all poised to provide stiff competition throughout the upcoming seasons after successful sophomore campaigns. Sophomores Bruno Jednacak (horizontal jumps) and Spencer O'Neill (high jump), and first year Kyle Brown (pole vault) will round out the Bulldogs' jumps squad this year.
Senior Jake Hoops will be leading this year's throws squad, comprised of junior Marcus Downs and first year Andrew Rochon. All three of these athletes will likely compete in the weight throw and shot put for the indoor season and the discus, hammer throw and shot put for the outdoor season. Last outdoor season, Jake Hoops placed 6th in the shot put at Ivy Heps Outdoors.
Junior Trevor Reinhart, who was the only Bulldog to compete at the NCAA Outdoor Championships last season, is hoping to carry his recent success into the upcoming indoor and outdoor seasons. Senior cross country captain Adam Houston should be prepared for a stellar year after his strong finish last outdoor season. Along with fellow seniors Ryan Brady, Matt Chisholm (who we might see competing in the steeplechase), Schan Lartigue, Cameron Stanish and Michael Yuan; Houston will be in a position to lead a fairly young distance squad, including sophomores James Lewis, Armstrong Noonan, Peter Ryan, Allen Siegler, Austin Stoner and Kohl Swift; and first years Neil Braganza, Nick Dahl, Charlie Gardner, Will Laird, Patrick Perry and Cameron Wyman. The team will also see three juniors returning to competition in Zach Capello, Casey Celestin and Dylan Lesko. Other Elis on the distance squad who will be looking to make large contributions to the team this year include senior Thomas Gmür, who has shown his speed numerous times throughout his Yale career, and sophomore Jonathan Lomogda, who is coming off of impressive outdoor and cross country seasons.
The sprints portion of the team is still fairly young, but has proven itself to be very talented and successful. Sophomore stand-out Vincent Vaughns was a key component to the Bulldogs' success at important meets last season, and he will likely step up this year to play an even bigger role. With the absence of senior athletes, juniors Gregory Campbell, Jr., Connor Hill and Alex McIntyre will be stepping up to lead the sprints squad after impressive seasons last year. Sophomores Kyle Macauley, Greg Moschella and Fergal Burnett Small will be looking to fill in roles left behind by last year's graduating class, with Moschella specializing in the longer sprints. Lone first year Ekrem Ayhan will be competing in his collegiate debut at the Yale Season Opener.
Team captain Paedyn Gomes is coming off an explosive junior year in which he won an Ivy Heps championship and qualified for the NCAA East Preliminary Round. Expect to see him running the 60 meter hurdles, 100 meter hurdles and the 400 meter hurdles. Sophomore Jonathan Ascher will be handling all three hurdle distances alongside Gomes. They will be joined by first years Jackson Chapman and Ben Shelley who are hoping to race well in their first year of collegiate competition.
The Yale Season Opener will be on Saturday, Dec. 9. This meet will be held at Coxe Cage. Relevant links, including schedules and results, will be updated here as they are made available.
Yale Season Opener Links:
Report by Zachary Capello '19, Yale Sports Publicity