Taking on three meets last Friday, the Binghamton men and women’s track and field teams collectively broke three school records. The program has now tallied five new school records this season alone.
“When people are performing really well, you’re going to be confident going into the [America East] conference meet,” said Binghamton head coach Mike Thompson. “The team as a whole has been very resilient this year between injuries and quarantine … The team has done a fantastic job of keeping it together.”
The Bearcats kicked off their historic day of competition at the Mount St. Mary’s 33-48 Invitational, where graduate student Elly Scherer ran a time of 13.84 in the 100-meter hurdles, beating her previous school record of 13.89 that she ran during this season’s first meet. Scherer won the event over nine other competing athletes.
“[Scherer] has a chance to win [the AE conference meet],” Thompson said. “There’s her and a couple of other girls that are very competitive … I don’t look at [Scherer] as someone who’s providing depth, I look at her as someone who’s challenging to win the title.”
Other first-place finishers at Mount St. Mary’s included senior Nia Joyner in the triple jump (38-02.25 feet), senior Brittany Korsah in the 400-meter dash (57.48), junior Madison Krochina in the hammer throw (154-01 feet) and senior Carmela Culhane in the 800-meter race (2:20.19). The women’s team took third place overall out of five teams.
Three Binghamton athletes competed at the Virginia Challenge, which featured both nationally and globally ranked athletes who participated at the meet. Redshirt senior Emily Mackay competed in the 1500-meter race for the women’s side, clocking in at 4:17.37. She broke her previous school record of 4:27.45 in the event, which she set back in 2019.
“[Mackay] is just extremely fit right now,” Thompson said. “She’s always been talented, she’s always been a hard worker, but right now her overall fitness level is at an all-time high. That combined with her talent is resulting in very fast times.”
Mackay finished seventh overall in the 1500-meter. The first place position was taken by Reebok athlete Josette Norris, who broke both the meet and facility records with a time of 4:07.35.
Also competing at the Virginia Challenge for the women was redshirt sophomore Aziza Chigatayeva. She took on the 3000-meter steeplechase and finished 15th with a time of 10:41.37. Rounding out Binghamton’s runners was redshirt junior Dan Schaffer, who ran a time of 13:57.94 in the 5000-meter to top his previous school record of 14:03.30 in the event.
“[Schaffer] has got a lot of talent, he’s a very disciplined guy and the only thing that’s held him back at all has been injury,” Thomspon said. “When [Schaffer] is able to train and compete and is healthy, he does really well.”
In addition to breaking the school record, Schaffer also won his heat in the 5000-meter and finished 20th overall. Wake Forest sophomore Zach Facioni won the event and broke the meet record as well as the facility record, which had stood since 1986.
Binghamton finished its weekend at the Redhawk Invitational, which consisted of only middle- and long-distance events. The Bearcats recorded only one first-place finish at the meet, as sophomore Matt Cavaliere crossed the finish line in the 1500-meter, running a time of 3:52.22.
The Bearcats are set to return to action at the Lehigh Carol and John Covert Classic on Saturday, April 24. The meet is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.