By P.J. Wright, news staff

The Northeastern University (NU) track and field teams split up and competed in two separate meets over the weekend. A majority of the student athletes took part in the University of Massachusetts Leap Year Tri-Meet in Amherst on Saturday, while the rest trekked down to Alabama for the Auburn University Tiger Track Classic on Friday and Saturday.

The men took home first in the Leap Year Tri-Meet, finishing the day with 160 points, including 11 first-place performances. The women left with second, backed by 136 points of their own.

The Huskies hurdle squad dominated the field with four golds.

Top finishers included freshman Shawn Bleichert in the 110-meter hurdles (14.92), junior Betsy Garnick in the 100-meter hurdles (14.48) and freshman Hayden Kilpatrick (55.92) and sophomore Audrey Weyand (1:03.90) in the men’s and women’s 400-meter hurdles, respectively.

After the indoor season, Garnick said the members of the hurdle team have stuck together and maintained their chemistry that they cultivated in the winter.

“My relationship with the group is awesome,” Garnick said in an email to The News.  “We all know each other very well, and if one of us is having an off day, the other members know exactly how to lighten the mood.”

Sophomore Jordan Samuels agreed that the team has gotten very close.

“They are some of the funniest people I know, and I wouldn’t want to work with anyone else,” said Samuels, who competed in the triple-jump on Saturday, finishing top-10 (14.52 meters).  “We are constantly bringing the best out of each other.”

Another hurdler, redshirt senior Jared Lane, who was also a part of a silver 4×100 team on Saturday, came away with a fourth place finish in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 14.04 in the Auburn Tiger Track Classic.

His performances in the two events earned him CAA Men’s Track Athlete of the Week.

“It was great to see Jared run so well this weekend,” head coach and director Cathrine Erickson told GoNU. “He has done a fantastic job preparing to compete this year and is bound to have a great season.”

Senior Nicole Genard took the CAA women’s honors with her silver in the javelin (47.43 meters) and her 11th place mark in the long jump (5.70 meters) at Auburn.

“I was pleased to see Nicole hit 47 meters once again. She is doing a great job as a student of the sport and really making technical adjustments to the throw,” Erickson said. “I anticipate big throws from her this year.”

Next up, the team goes on the road again for the Connecticut Decathlon, which will take place on Thursday April 14 and Friday April 15, then will stick around for the Northeast Challenge on Saturday in Storrs, Conn.
Photo courtesy Jim Pierce, Northeastern Athletics