PHILADELPHIA -- The Columbia track & field program racked up four more individual/relay titles on Sunday at the 2012 Ivy League Heptagonal Outdoor Championships at Penn’s Franklin Field.
Columbia totaled five titles over the course of both days of competition with the Lions’ middle distance men accounting for three and the women’s jumpers earning two. The Columbia men finished fifth with 58 team points and the Lions’ women took seventh with 66 points.
IVY LEAGUE INDIVIDUAL/RELAY CHAMPIONS
4x800m Relay - Mark Feigen, Brendon Fish, Kyle Merber, Harry McFann
With a time of 7:20.53, the 4x800m championship squad of Mark Feigen, Brendon Fish, Kyle Merber and Harry McFann broke the Ivy League record set just last week at Penn Relays by the quartet of Connor Claflin, Fish, Liam Tansey and McFann. That time also smashed the old Heps record of 7:25.36 set by Penn in 2011. Fiegen ran a great first leg, pulling to the front of the pack as he made the final two turns. Fish stayed in front then added a burst midway through his second leg to give Merber a nice cushion on the handoff. Merber raced ahead, widening the gap between first and second before McFann ran a strong anchor, maintaining Columbia’s big lead to fend off Cornell anchor Rutger Admirand.
Men's 4x800m Relay: Fish to Merber handoff (Columbia University Athletics | Mike McLaughlin)
1,500m Run - Kyle Merber
Merber added another Ivy League title to his storied Columbia career with a first-place finish in the men’s 1,500m with a time of 4:02.85. Remaining near the front of the pack for the entire race, the senior turned on the jets in the final 200m to seize the lead and the title. The Columbia men scored 15 points in this event alone as sophomore Byron Jones pulled outside in the final turn for a late surge and finish fourth with a time of 4:04.55. First-year Daniel Everett was sixth with a time of 4:04.94.
Merber in the 1,500m (Columbia University Athletics | Mike McLaughlin)
800m Run - Harry McFann
Like Merber, McFann was a double-winner on Sunday as he won the men’s 800m finals not long before running anchor for the 4x800m relay. McFann stayed in the front three for the entire race and his final push coming out of the last turn allowed him to cross the line first in a time of 1:49.31. Claflin scored points in this race as well, taking fourth with a time of 1:50.03.
McFann in the 800m (Columbia University Athletics | Mike McLaughlin)
IVY LEAGUE INDIVIDUAL CHAMPIONS
Triple Jump - Nadia Eke
Eke, who had finished second in Saturday’s long jump, took the Ivy league outdoor triple jump crown with a leap of 12.67m on her third try. The first-year sensation has swept the Ivy League indoor and outdoor triple jump titles this year -- a possible sign that the road to an Ivy League women’s triple jump title over the next few years goes through Columbia. The Lions’ women scored 15 points in this event as junior QueenDenise Okeke took fourth place (12.04m) and sophomore Tara Richmond took sixth (11.74.m).
Eke in the triple jump (Columbia University Athletics | Mike McLaughlin)
Long Jump - Uju Ofoche (Saturday)
On Saturday, Ofoche defended her Ivy League long jump title with a leap of 5.89m on her sixth try. She has established herself as the conference’s dominant long jumper as she has won the indoor and outdoor crowns in each of the last two seasons. Eke took second place with a leap of 5.88m.
John Gregorek, Lucie Cincinatis and Kevin Boyd posted some impressive individual performances on Sunday. Gregorek took second place in the men’s 3,000m steeplechase with a furious finish to finish in 9:00.06, just seven hundredths of a second better than Princeton’s Eddie Owens. Cincinatis beat her top-seed time from Saturday in the women’s 100m hurdles, crossing the line in 14.13 to take second place. Boyd ran a great men’s 400m dash, clocking in at 47.88 to take third place.