Southern Maine Men Win Fourth Straight LEC Indoor Championship
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- The University of Southern Maine men's track and field team pulled away late win its fourth consecutive Little East Conference indoor championship Saturday at the Providence Career and Technical High School.
The Huskies held off a challenge from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth to take the team title, 170-136. Plymouth State University edged the University of Massachusetts Boston for third place in the seven-team field, 89-83.
Winning LEC individual titles were junior Jared Marshall (Gloucester, Mass.) in the 200 meters (22.50), junior Hany Ramadan (Portland, Maine/Deering) in the 400 (50.35), freshman Zach Hoyle (Sidney, Maine/Messalonskee) in the 800 (1:58.66), freshman Chandler Vincent (Pownal, Maine/Freeport) in the 5,000 meters (15:24.33), and junior Drew Gamage (Sabbatus, Maine/Oak Hill) in the triple jump (indoor personal best 14.32 meters/46-11.75).
The Huskies' 4 x 400-meter relay combination of sophomores Donivyn Harms (Westbrook, Maine/Rochelle (Ill.) Township) and Cam Labrie (Tamworth, N.H./Kennett), senior Justin Pierce (Standish, Maine/Mt. Ararat) and Ramadan took the top spot with a time of 3:25.53.
Earning runner-up finishes were Harms in the 400 (51.38), junior Colin Jones (Scarborough, Maine) in the 800 (season best 1:59.71), junior Michael Aboud (Waterboro, Maine/Massabesic) in the mile (season best 4:25.79), freshman Cam Meier (Bowdoinham, Maine/Mt. Ararat) in the 3,000 meters (8:55.86), and the 4 x 800 relay (8:15.70) foursome of freshmen Josh Bloom (Bar Harbor, Maine/MDI) and Masho Gebremikael (Portland, Maine/Deering), Hoyle and Jones.
Bringing home valuable third-place finishes were senior Trey Rogers (Auburn, Maine/Edward Little) in the 60-meter dash (personal best 7.13), Labrie in the 600 (1:24.97), Bloom in the 800 (2:00.77), freshman Trent Dexter (New Gloucester, Maine/Gray-New Gloucester) in the pole vault (3.65 meters/11-11 ¾), and freshman Kyle Farrar (Rumford, Maine/Mt. Blue) in the long jump (season best 6.65 meters/21-10).
Rogers also picked up a fourth-place finish in the 200 (personal best 23.20), as did Aboud in the 1,000 (2:40.13), Vincent in the 3,000 (9:04.27), Gebremikael in the 5,000 (16:54.70) and sophomore Connor Goodall (Gorham, Maine) in the pole vault (3.50 meters/11-5 ¾). Gamage and Pierce tied for fourth in the high jump (1.88 meters/6-2).
Needing to overcome UMD's big advantage (30 points to 1) in the two throwing events, the Huskies turned the meet in their favor with Hoyle, Jones and Bloom's 1-2-3 finish in the 800 for a 20-point swing.
USM got another big boost outscoring UMD, 14-0, in the 3,000 meters. Meier combined with Vincent and sophomore Nick Harriman (Lisbon, Maine; 5th place, 9:06.70). Gamage combined with freshman Ben Musese (Auburn, Maine/Lewiston; 5th place, 13.10 meters/42-11 ¾) and Farrar (6th place, 12.69 meters/41-7 ¾) in the triple jump to add to the Huskies' lead.
The two relays put the final punctuation mark on the Huskies' fourth straight LEC title, and eighth in the last 10 years. Since the LEC added indoor track and field to its list of championships in 1999, Southern Maine has won 13 titles.
In the New England Alliance meet that features schools from the Little East Conference and the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference, USM was edged out for the team title by Bridgewater State University, 138.50-124. UMass Dartmouth was third with 103 points, followed by Westfield State University with 86 and Worcester State University with 83.
In addition to their LEC titles, Ramadan, Hoyle and Gamage also won Alliance titles.
Qualified competitors will journey to Middlebury College on Friday and Saturday (February 16-17) to compete at the New England Division III Championships.