The University of Rhode Island men’s and women’s track teams both competed in the Mark Young Yale Invitational and it was a successful weekend for both with senior Jalen Young for the men and junior Mariah Claudio for the women among the top performers.
For the men’s team specifically there were quite a few solid performers, but Young’s topped the rest. He once again competed in the 200-meter and the 4 x 100-meter relay, but also ran in the 400-meter race this weekend. Â Young won the 200-meter and 400-meter with times of 21.46 seconds and 48.02 seconds respectively.
“Jalen has really improved steadily the whole time he has been here,” Rhode Island men’s track and field head coach John Copeland said. “He has really done a great job no matter where we put him. We works hard and has been really consistent.”
Continuing his strong performance, he was the anchor on the 4×100-meter team that finished second with a time of 41.62 seconds, which was the second fastest time in school history. Â The other athletes on the 4 x 100-meter relay team were sophomore DeAngelo Berry and seniors Tyler Oliveira and Mike DiMambro.
The pole vault saw senior James Strawderman clear a season-best 5.05 meters and grab first place. Â The Rams were able to snag first, second and third place with sophomores Ondrej Honka and Williams Thibault getting second and third, respectively, behind Strawderman.
Other notable performers were sophomore Mahlik Handley in the hammer throw, who won the event and extended his conference lead by two meters, with a toss of 58.84 meters. In addition to Handley, the 4×400-meter relay team of freshman Jaleel Felton, freshman Nigel Hill, sophomore Jared Gray and junior Aaron Libman won their event with a time of 3:16.77.
“I think we really had an excellent outing,” Copeland said. “We had a lot of fun. You can go right down the list. I don’t know who to even point out. I was very pleased.”
As for the women’s team, Claudio was the story of the meet as she broke a school record in the 400-meter race. Claudio won the event with a time of 55.39 seconds, besting the previous record of 55.84 seconds. Claudio also ran the 200-meter later on, grabbing seventh place with a time of 24.76 seconds. The time was a personal best and gave her the seventh-best time in URI history.
There were also a pair of second-place finishes for junior Karleigh Manfreddi and sophomore Micaela McPadden. Manfreddi’s came in the pole vault with an outdoor personal best of 3.65 meters, which also places her third on the all-time school list in the event. McPadden’s second-place finish came in the 400-meter hurdles with URI and season-best time of 1:04.57.
Additionally the 4×100-meter relay team also ran their best time of the season, posting a mark of 47.77 seconds to give them a third-place finish. The group is made up of freshman Chaslynn Saucier,Â sophomores Brianna Robitaille and Dyshelle Pemberton as well as junior Shellyann Lindo.
The next meet for both teams is Thursday through Saturday in Pennsylvania at the Penn Relays.