VESTAL, N.Y. – Riding wins in the 10,000m run and javelin competition by freshmen Hassan Omar (Frederick, Md./Thomas Johnson) and Vincent Rentzsch (Oranienburg, Germany), the UMBC men's track and field team took a share of the lead at the America East Championships with 51 points, on day one of the competition at Binghamton's East Gym Complex.
The Retrievers are tied atop the standings with reigning champion Albany, while Binghamton (47 pts.) and New Hampshire (45 pts.) trail by less than ten points. Maine (22 pts.) and Vermont (9 pts.) round out the standings.
The UMBC women sit in seventh after the first day of competition with ten points. The host Bearcats lead with 63 points with Albany (50 pts.), UNH (48.5 pts.) and Vermont (47.5 pts.) just back. Maine (33 pts.) and Stony Brook (13 pts.) occupy fifth and sixth, while Hartford (8 pts.) is in eighth.
Omar led a group of three Retrievers to place in the top-ten in the 10k race. The freshman took the conference title with a time of 31:42.63 while junior Tom Eldridge (Rocky River, Ohio/Rocky River) took fourth and freshman Noah Hutton (Bel Air, Md.) placed sixth.
Entering the conference meet as the top seed and as the UMBC record-holder, Rentzsch earned the gold medal in the javelin by besting the field by 16 feet. The freshman recorded a top throw of 59.11m (193'11) to win the event. He also finished 16th in the long jump and sits in third in the decathlon after five events. Rentzsch won the shot put section of the competition and took second in the long jump.
The Retrievers also received top team performances in the 3,000m steeplechase and hammer throw. Freshman Redatu Semeon (Waldorf, Md./Thomas Stone) paced the distance crew with a second-place finish with a time of 9:19.18. Juniors Vinny DiSalvo (Washingtonville, N.Y./Washingtonville) and Brandan McGee (Hiram, Ohio/Crestwood) placed eighth and ninth, respectively.
In the throwing event, sophomore Thor Serafenas (Olney, Md./Good Counsel/Clemson) missed out on the gold medal by just one foot. Serafeans' heave of 56.78m (186'3") finished just behind that of New Hampshire's Christopher Dupuis (56.80m; 168'4"). Junior Ray Stinsman (Mt. Laurel, N.J./Lenape) finished fifth with a career-best toss of 50.75m (166'6").
UMBC also set itself up in the sprints as multiple athletes qualified for Saturday's finals led by senior Trae Proctor (Brandywine, Md./Thomas Stone) who ran the fastest time in the 110m hurdles (14.75).
Senior Dennison Long (Greenbelt, Md./Eleanor Roosevelt/FIU) and freshman Jenove Blanfort both qualified for the 100m and 200m dash events. Long posted the top time in the 200m event, crossing the line in 21.39.
For the women, sophomore Mercedes Jackson (Huntingtown, Md./Huntingtown) moved on to the finals in both sprint events as the top qualifier. She will be joined by freshman D'Nique Phillip (Elkton, Md.) in both event finals while classmate Ebonique Jones (New Castle, Del./William Penn) and junior Kirsten Jones (Brentwood, Tenn./M.L.K. Magnet) advanced in the 100m and 200m competitions, respectively. Kirsten Jones also moved on in the 400m dash with sophomore Kalane' Abbey (Laurel, Md./Laurel) recording a personal-best of 57.32 to qualify as well.
Ebonique Jones also competed in the long jump and took fourth-place with a top jump of 5.61m (18'5") to match her career-best.
In the 400m hurdles, sophomore Paulette Fogle (Washington, D.C./Bishop McNamara) edged her school-record time down to 1:01.33, the second-fastest time of the day. Classmate Mary Katherine Kulp (Vestal, N.Y./Vestal) also registered a top personal time (1:03.67) to advance.
Sophomore Cody Mezebish (Westminster, Md./South Carroll) ran a personal-best time of 2:14.09 to move on to the finals of the 800m run.
Senior Amanda Deller (Aberdeen, Md./Aberdeen) finished fourth in the hammer throw event with a top throw of 45.78m (150'2").