posted on: Thursday April 29, 2010
Dan O’Brien ’10 / Sports Staff
The Men’s and Women’s Track Teams are ready; Head Coach Ray Treacy knows it, the athletes themselves know it, and their audiences during the last two meets in California and Philadelphia know it. Not in Coach Treacy’s 26 years at the Friar helm has he brought a larger contingency to the Big East Championship meet, a race that will mark the Friars’ third straight weekend heading into action against the nation’s top competition.The Penn Relays, the University of Pennsylvania’s annual track gala, was the site of the most recent performances by Coach Treacy’s athletes. The Friars certainly lived up to the hype of the Relays, which are run on one of the nation’s most historic tracks and received national coverage by ESPN. It is not understatement, either, that the Penn Relays showcase the best in the world, with participants this year including Olympic champion and world record holder Usain Bolt. Led by the men’s 4 x mile team and the women’s 4 x 1,500-meter squad, the Friars proved that they are a force to be reckoned with come this weekend’s Big East Championship meet and subsequent NCAA regional and national races.With two of the four men on the 4 x mile distance team recently achieving personal bests in the 1,500-meter at the Mt. Sac relays, it comes as no surprise that the tandem of Richard Yeates ’10G, Hayden McLaren ’10, Dominic Channon ’12, and Julian Matthews ’12 was able to cross the line in an astonishing time of 16:24.24, nine seconds off the lead, national powerhouse Oregon, and second of the four Big East teams entered in the race. This result was yet another step in the right direction for the senior standout McLaren, who has lost time during his senior year due to an ankle injury. McLaren, in only his second race since the 2009 cross country season, continues to impress Coach Treacy and New Zealand officials alike, as they are the gateway to his participation in this summer’s Commonwealth Games for his native country. Also sustaining a remarkable finish to his final year in the Friar singlet is Richard Yeates ’10G, who has led the team with perfection in the wake of the absences of Lee Carey ’12 and David McCarthy ’12.The women’s distance team participated in the 4 x 1,500-meter race, placing 10th overall behind a Tennessee team which ran the fourth fastest time ever on the University of Pennsylvania track. Led by Charlotte Ffrench O’Carroll’s ’10 4:28.8 split, the quartet of O’Carroll, Shelby Greany ’13, Sam Roecker ’13, and Emma Perron ’11 finished a minute off the lead and, more importantly, gained the necessary experience to compete in one of the best races in the country. Greany, who is coming off of her USA cross country championship and the number four steeplechase time in the country, is looking to compete in her first Big East Championship Outdoor meet. The conference meet, along with the later NCAA races, will put an end to what has been the most productive freshman season by a Friar athlete in any sport.Cincinnati plays host to the Big East Championship meet, which will welcome the largest amount of qualified Friars ever.