Men’s and Women’s Track Make Strong Showing in Season Opener

Both men’s and women’s track logged successful meets on Saturday at the Wesley A. Brown Invitational in Annapolis, Md. 

For the women’s team, the meet at Navy marked its first full meet of the year and saw 17 athletes compete in 10 events. The standouts from the meet were the impressive season debuts of Madison Martinez, Trudy-Ann Williamson and Gloria Donou.

Martinez, a freshman sprinter, kicked off her college career with first place in the 500 meters. Her winning time of 1:14.80 was nearly three seconds faster than the runner-up. Seniors Williamson and Donou also opened their final seasons with first-place finishes. Williamson’s win in the 60 meters with a time of 7.59 was her 18th time finishing first in the event out of 19 races. Donou’s winning jump of 11.71 meters not only won her first in the triple-jump but also marked her indoor personal best. She is now eighth on Villanova’s indoor all-time performance in triple jump. 

Women’s track’s success this weekend continued outside of the three winning performances. Sophomore pole vaulter Ashley Preston finished second with her successful final try at 4.00 meters. She is now the third athlete in Villanova history to clear at least four meters at an indoor competition. Two sprinters, junior Adrianna Letros and freshman Alexis Martin, recorded personal bests in the 200 and 400 meters. Letros recorded a 200 time of 26.59 and a 400 time of 59.25 and Martin ran the 200 and 400 in 25.80 and 59.16 during her career debut.

Men’s track featured several standout season debuts this weekend with athletes competing in seven individual running events and five field events. The Wildcats took first place in the 4x400 meter relay and captured a 1-2-3 sweep of the 500 meters. Freshman sprinter Anthony Brodie, senior Keegan Hughes, junior Amir Brock and junior Richie Bush combined to finish the relay in 3:17.74. Brodie and Hughes also competed in the 500 meters along with senior Konrad Bayer. Brodie came in first, completing the race in 1:04.39 and was followed by Bayer’s personal best time of 1:05.56 and Keegan Hughes’s 1:05.65. 

Distance runners also had a strong showing in Annapolis, with multiple freshman running for the first time as Wildcats. Redshirt freshman Haftu Strintzos’s personal best time in the 3000 meters of 8:27.17 was the fastest of all six Villanova runners in the event and powered him to second place overall. Strintzos was followed by redshirt freshman Ben Sieple in sixth place (8:27.17), redshirt freshman Patrick Spychalski in seventh place (8:36.12, personal best) and redshirt freshman Patrick Craemer (8:36.89, personal best). Junior Paul Nichols placed eighth (8:36.53) and grad student Dylan Tarpey placed 12th (8:45.73). Finally, true freshman Miller Anderson notched his new personal best of 2:27.48 and placed second in the 1000 meters, while redshirt freshman Nick Ackerman finished sixth in the mile with a time of 4:25.30. 

In addition, the Wildcats’ field athletes opened competition featured by junior Jacob Kelley coming in second in the high jump with 2.00 meters while sophomore Jim Keys’s attempt at 4.60 launched him to eighth place in pole vaulting. Juniors Michael Troup and Vincent Senglemann both recorded indoor personal bests in long jump with Troup’s jump of 7.12 meters pushing him to second place at competition and ninth place all-time in school indoor history for long jump. Sengelmann came in seventh place with his 6.75-meter jump.

Both teams return on Jan. 24 at the New York Armory for the Dr. Sander Invitational and the Columbia Challenge which runs from Friday to Saturday.