Dec. 1, 2017
By Megan Golden
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — The University of Notre Dame track and field team opened its season with the annual Blue & Gold Invitational on Friday.
Graduate student Jacob Dumford‘s performance in the 1,000m highlighted Friday’s action at Loftus Sports Center, where he ran to first place and a school-record time of 2:21.45. Dumford was led by fellow graduate student and Tulsa transfer Elijah Silva, who served as the rabbit for nearly two thirds of the race. Dumford’s time broke Jeremy Rae‘s school record of 2:22.07 (set in 2014) and also topped his previous personal record of 2:24.17.
“Jake’s new school record is a great start to the indoor season,” Irish assistant coach Sean Carlson said. “I am excited to see him continue to progress going forward.”
The race marked the third time Dumford has run in the 1,000m and the first since he ran alongside Rae — in the race that set the previous school record.
“Having a fall without cross country, this was really something to look forward to,” Dumford said. “Having this to train for all fall was great for me to have something to keep my eye on. I knew what the record was, and my freshman year idol, Jeremy Rae, held the record. I thought that I had it in me to break it because I had a really good fall of training.”
Senior Samantha Murray was victorious in the women’s 600m race, recording a personal-record time of 1:32.26. Murray finished in the front of a 10-person field. On the men’s side, Patrick O’Mara (1:23.45) raced to third place in the 600m.
In the mile, a trio of Irish runners finished in second through fourth place, including seniors Kaitlin Frei (5:08.95) and Stephanie Knight (5:13.78) and sophomore Madison Ronzone (5:16.61). Sophomore Clayton Goldman (4:23.28) finished in second overall in the mile, and fellow sophomore Dustin Macuiba (4:25.51) placed third. The time marked a personal record for Goldman.
Notre Dame senior Jordan Shead ran to first place in the women’s 400m, recording a time of 54.65. Shead was followed by teammates Payton Miller (56.15) in third and Rachel Rhodes (58.21) in seventh. Senior Drake Stimson led the Irish men, finishing in 49.62 (third), while junior Edward Cheatham concluded the race in fifth (49.72). Junior Zachary Zajdel (50.44) and sophomore Carter Sorenson (51.85) finished in eighth and 13th, respectively.
Former Irish sprinter Jade Barber ran in the 60m hurdles final, picking up first place and an 8.25 mark. Sophomores Summer Thorpe (8.66) and Grace Cronin (8.83) wrapped up in third and fifth, respectively.
Junior Kyla Lewis opened the season with a victory in the 60m dash, tallying a personal record of 7.52. Sophomore Michaela Butler ran to fifth place with a time of 7.71, just .01 away from equaling her personal best time.
In the 800m, senior Alexis Daugherty notched another first-place finish for the Irish (2:15.07). Daugherty’s win was immediately followed by freshman Matt Fraizer‘s victory on the men’s side. In his Notre Dame debut, Fraizer raced to a time of 1:55.50. Freshman Evan Radomoski placed third overall with a time of 1:58.26.
Barber tallied her second victory of the night in the women’s 200m. Several Irish sprinters followed, including Hunter (24.91, third), Lewis (25.17, fourth), Cronin (25.46, sixth), Bartoszewicz (25.49, eighth) and Butler (25.74, 14th). Both Hunter and Cronin recorded personal records in the race. Zajdel ran to a time of 22.45, finishing in second place in the men’s 200m.
Numerous Irish distance runners competed in the 3,000m. A freshmen duo of Parker Jones (8:22.67) and Kelly Koehnen (10:26.39) finished in first place in their Irish debuts. Graduate student and Georgetown transfer Conor Sheryak (8:26.77), sophomore Peter Monahan (8:27.87), and freshmen Brendan Fraser (8:42.51) and Kyle Fulk (8:58.38) rounded out the top five. Mary Clare Leonard (10:41.34) and Brooke Trossen (10:42.53) finished third and fourth, respectively.
The Irish wrapped up the running portion of the night with the 4x400m relays. The men’s relay squad of Cheatham, Zajdel, O’Mara and Goldman came in second overall (3:21.41). The Irish relay of Allison Bartoszewicz, Miller, Hunter and Shead finished first with a time of 3:45.22.
In his collegiate debut, Antonio Villegas led the Irish in the long jump, recording a mark of 6.48m (12th place). The freshman was followed by Carter Sorenson, who finished in 15th with a 6.03m jump.
Three Irish throwers competed in the women’s shot put, and sophomore Abbey Kapitan led Notre Dame finishers in second place with a 14.86m throw. Graduate student Indi Jackson (14.78) and freshman Rachel Tanczos (13.12) placed third and fifth, respectively. Junior Daniel Hardiman was victorious on the men’s side, throwing 16.19m. Sophomores Shae Watkins (15.80m, second) and Logan Kusky (15.47m, fourth) and freshman John Stefan (15.41m, fifth) rounded out the top-five Irish finishers.
Graduate student Nate Richartz finished at the top of the men’s pole vault field with a 5.20m jump. Sophomore Landon Shank (4.40m) finished in sixth.
Junior Matthew Birzer jumped to second place and a 2.14m mark in the high jump, while senior Hunter Holton came in fourth (2.00m). In the women’s high jump, Libby Parsons and Rhodes each tallied 1.55m jumps.
Kusky threw 17.82m in the weight throw, recording third place overall. Kusky was followed by Watkins (15.84m) and Stefan (14.74m), who finished in sixth and eighth. For the women, Kapitan finished first with an 18.01m throw, while Tanczos (15.38m) concluded in fifth. Kapitan and Stefan each recorded personal records in the event.
“I was very happy with Abbey’s PR performance in the weight today,” Irish assistant coach Adam Beltran said. “The way she improved each round was especially impressive. I am excited to see her progress this season.”
Coming Up Next
Notre Dame returns to the track at 10:30 a.m. ET on Jan. 13, when it competes at the Wolverine Invitational (Ann Arbor, Mich.).
For more on the Irish track and field program, follow @NDXCTF on Twitter and ndxctf on Instagram.
Megan Golden, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since August 2016. In her role, she coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame women’s soccer and cross country/track and field programs and is the secondary contact for women’s basketball. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Golden is a 2014 graduate of Saint Mary’s College and former Irish women’s basketball manager. Prior to arriving at Notre Dame, she worked in public relations with the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox.