It was an exciting weekend for the Red at the Heps Championship indoor track and field meet at Harvard. The men’s team edged defending champion Princeton by just one point to bring the indoor Heps title back to Cornell for the first time since 2009. The women’s team also had a strong showing but came up short, finishing the meet in second place behind Harvard.
“Most of the people at the meet who are long time Heps people said that that was the most incredible Heps meet they’ve been to in 30 years,” said men’s head coach Nathan Taylor. “The crowd just blew the roof off the venue for eight hours.”
Top individual accolades went to the Red’s athletes who took first in their events. Junior Montez Blair took first in the high jump, and senior co-captain J.D. Adarquah reclaimed his title in the 60m dash. Senior Bruno Hortelano in the 400m and junior Will Weinlandt in the 800m were among top finishers for the Red. Taylor was quick to point out, though, that there were many unsung heroes for Cornell.
“Some of the real … efforts were guys like [junior] Chris Bain,” he said. “He hasn’t been able to really practice or compete for weeks and was able to score with a 4th place finish in the [60m] dash. [Sophomore] Stephen Mozia and [senior] Nick Wade each scored 16 points.”
Wade was more excited about the meet as a whole than just performing as an individual.
“That was pretty surreal,” he said. “It’s really hard to put into words. It was probably the best indoor Heps that’s ever occurred [if you could] measure it in terms of intensity. I don’t think I’ll ever experience that again in my life — it was amazing.”
Although the women’s team finished in second place, women’s head coach Rich Bowman spoke about how proud the squad is despite coming up short.
“I was just so proud of how well they competed,” he said. “We did [the] best job that we could have done. We just got beat by a team that was just a tad bit better than us on that weekend. We held nothing back.”
The loss to Harvard, according to Bowman, will serve as motivation for the squad to get going during the outdoor season.
“It gives us that much more motivation to really take it outdoors,” he said. “I think we’re going to use this as a motivational factor for the outdoor season.”
Senior co-captain Victoria Imbesi defended her title from last year’s Heps meet in the shot put and said she was pleased by her performance.
“It was nice being able to reclaim my title,” she said.Notable performances by the women’s team included a 1-2-3 sweep of the 3K by junior Rachel Sorna, junior Emily Shearer and senior Katie Kellner, and a win in the 4×400 relay of a team consisting of junior Ryan Woolley, sophomore Zena Kolliesuah, sophomore Katie Woodford, and junior Airewele Ebolutalese.Up next for the men’s team is the IC4A finals, and for the women’s team the ECAC finals, both being hosted in Boston this Saturday and Sunday.“As a team we have IC4As,” Wade said. “I’m going to run a last chance meet to try to qualify for nationals. Last year the men’s team won IC4As, so we’re looking to defend that title.” The women’s team is still determining who will represent Cornell at the ECACs, according to Imbesi.“We’re still not sure exactly who’s going yet,” she said. “Last year we won, I hope to win again this year. If our whole team shows up we can definitely win.”Both the men’s and women’s teams will look to defend their titles from last year this weekend in Boston.
Original Author: Juan Carlos Toledo