The Central Connecticut men's track and field team wrapped up day one of the 2014 NEC Indoor Track and Field Championships tied for second place with 22 team points on Saturday in Landover, MD. In addition to the five Blue Devils who scored for CCSU, Central also posted 11 performances that qualify for tomorrow's finals.
The Blue Devils dominated the 3,000m run on Saturday, earning 17 of CCSU's 22 team points in the event. CCSU was led by senior Craig Hunt who earned the silver medal with his time of 8:31.47.
Hunt, who was last year's individual champion in the event with his time of 8:31.83, crossed the finish line faster than last season and was followed by junior Andrew Hill in fourth (8.38.96) and sophomore Matt Walker in fifth (8:40.30).
The 3,000m trio was joined in the scoring by freshman Kendall Walker and junior Jamie Tobias. Walker finished sixth in the long jump with a career-best leap of 6.58 meters while Tobias cleared 1.92 meters in the high jump, good for seventh.
In the one mile run prelims, CCSU claimed three of the top four spots. Freshman Derek French led in the event, finishing first overall with his time of 4:31.50. He was followed by junior Patrick Hubbell in second (4:43.27) and junior Brian Biekert in fourth (4:43.87). All three have qualified for tomorrow's finals.
Biekert, who broke the CCSU record in the mile earlier this season (4:06.05), also qualified for the finals in the 800m, finishing fourth with his time of 1:55.40. Freshman Thomas Lupoli finished just before Biekert with his time of 1:56.52, claiming second overall and a spot in tomorrow's finals.
Junior Jordan Watkins, who has consistently broken his own CCSU record in the 60m hurdles this season, finished second in Saturday's prelims with his time of 8.29 seconds. Though his time is short of his record, he has earned the opportunity to compete in tomorrow's finals. He will be joined by freshman Dan Baum who finished eighth, crossing the finish line in 8.59 seconds.
In the 400m dash prelims, junior Jamal Fruster raced a qualifying time of 49.84 seconds, landing him in second place. He was followed by freshman Zach Andrews in ninth (51.33) who will be joining him in tomorrow's finals.
In addition to tomorrow's returning finalists, CCSU will also look to score in the 5,000m run as Hunt looks to defend his 2013 title.
Sacred Heart currently leads the scoring with 46 points, followed by CCSU and LIU Brooklyn tied for second with 22. Robert Morris and Wagner are tied for fourth with 17 points while Mount St. Mary's (15), Saint Francis U (10) and Bryant (7) currently rank sixth, seventh and eighth, respectively.