Rus and Thomas Garner Accolades as Men's Track & Field Second at NEWMACs

Alex Rus and Oliver Thomas

Springfield, MA --- Sophomore Alex Rus (Newton, MA) was named the NEWMAC Men's Track Athlete of the Year and freshman Oliver Thomas (Goffstown, NH) was selected as the NEWMAC Rookie of the Year as WPI placed second at the 2018 NEWMAC Track & Field Championships Saturday. Champions are also named NEWMAC All-Conference first team members while the runners up are named to the second team.

MIT retained the team title with 274.5 points while WPI tallied 221.5. Host Springfield was third (108) followed by Coast Guard (107), Babson (48) and Wheaton (12).

Rus set two school records, one NEWMAC championship record and won a pair of events. He began by teaming with Thomas, junior Antoine Harris (Southington, CT) and classmate Nick Fleury (Hopkinton, NH) to secure the first victory of the day with a 42.48 in the 4x100-meter relay. Both Rus and Fleury were a part of last year's runner up foursome.

Next up was the 400-meter dash where he handed in a NEWMAC and WPI record of 48.17. It is also currently 11th on the NCAA Division III leaderboard. Senior Warren Staver (Centreville, MD), last year's champion, was second for the third time in his career with a 48.89 to rank 37th on the national leaderboard. Classmate Paul-Henry Schoenhagen (Cleveland Heights, OH) finished fourth (49.30) for the Engineers.

The sophomore then wrapped up his day with a school-record 21.83 in the 200-meter dash as Harris added a seventh-place time of 22.27.

Thomas also paced four Boynton Hillers in the 110-meter hurdles with a runner up time of 15.20 and was fifth in the 400-meter hurdles (58.11). Sophomore Fabian Gaziano (Wilbraham, MA), the defending champion, was .09 seconds behind to claim third in the 110mH. Freshman Mark Bray (Shrewsbury, MA) and sophomore Quinton Schimmel (Monroe Township, NJ) secured fifth (15.82) and seventh (16.03), respectively. Gaziano led the way in the 400 hurdles with a third-place 57.06 and Schimmel was fourth (58.11).

Schoenhagen, freshman Ben Steeves (Hollis, ME), freshman Yossef Naim (Marlboro, MA) and Staver closed out the afternoon with a second-place 3:21.34 in the 4x400-meter relay. Senior Tristam Winship (Bedford, NH) was second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:43.78. He was followed by sophomore Jake Scarponi (Barrington, NH) in sixth (10:02.72). The 5,000-meter run saw junior Michael Brady (Medway, MA) repeat as the runner up in a time of 15:34.05. Scarponi crossed the finish line fifth (15:55.41) while sophomore Avery Ingegneri (Warwick, RI) and freshman James Kahn (Los Angeles, CA) were seventh (16:11.76) and eighth (16:16.38), respectively.

In the field events, senior Jack DeVine (Wilbraham, MA) earned silver in the long jump with a distance of 22-8.5 and classmate Aaron Weeks (Pittsfield, MA) did the same in the javelin with a toss of 183-9. Fleury and sophomore William Kopellas (Needham, MA) both landed 21-1.25; however, they were fifth and sixth in the long jump. Sophomore Mike Corace (Spotswood, NJ) took fourth (167-5) while junior Evan Bossio (Pittsfield, MA) and senior Brandon Hoghaug (Douglas, MA) were 7-8 in the javelin with distances of 150-11 and 138-1.

Sophomore Matt Jankowski (Burlington, MA) took third (44-7) and senior Patrick Wang (Beijing, China) was fourth (42) in the shot put while Hoghaug, the 2017 champion and 2016 runner up, claimed third and DeVine was fourth in the high jump with clearances of 6-4. Sophomore Garth Hull (Arlington, MA) tied for fifth at 6-2. Freshman Johann Bradley (Slidell, LA) tied for third in the pole vault with a successful height of 14-5.25 to go with a seventh-place 12-11.5 by freshman Nathaniel Shimkus (Hope Valley, RI). Wang, last year's runner up, placed third in the hammer throw with a 142-7 as freshman Sullivan Boyd (Woolwich, ME) was eighth (129-10).

A quartet of Engineers picked up points in the 100-meter dash as Harris, Kopellas, freshman Matt Adiletta (Bolton, MA) and Fleury were third (11.05), fourth (11.11), fifth (11.15) and sixth (11.16). Freshman Ben Steeves (Hollis, ME) came home fourth in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:56.19. In the first race of the day, freshman Logan Gaudette (Holden, MA) was fourth (32:48.58) and junior Matt Rabasco (Pittsfield, MA) crossed the finish line sixth (33:21.81) in the 10,000-meter run.

Sophomore Tom Hanlon (Derry, NH) claimed sixth (4:00.94) in the 1,500-meter run and Simpson took sixth (43-2.25) in the triple jump. Adiletta added an eighth-place 42-2.75 in the triple and Wang finished eighth in the discus (114-7).

WPI heads to MIT for the Division III New England Championships that begin on Friday.