Bulldogs Host Lidlifter Invitational on Saturday

Mike Levine (photo by Forrest Temple)
Mike Levine (photo by Forrest Temple)

Season Opener Gets Bulldogs in Competitive Mode

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Bulldogs will kick off the 2010-11 season at home with the Lidlifter Invitational this Saturday. Various teams from the area, including Manhattan College, Marist, Southern Connecticut, St. Peter's College and the University of New Haven will compete at Coxe Cage this weekend. David Shoehalter, the Mark T. Young '68 Director of Cross Country and Track and Field, said the main focus of the meet is to see the Bulldogs compete since training began in September.

"We're less concerned about the times they run or how far they jump or throw, and we're more concerned about competing and passing people at the end," Shoehalter said.

The Bulldogs will see sophomore Mike Levine, an NCAA qualifier last season, and senior David Smith in the weight throw and shot put. Shoehalter said he was also excited to see how freshman Stefan Palios performs this weekend.

Last year's duo of senior Samba Binagi and junior Yifan Chen return in both the triple jump and long jump, as well as freshman Dana Lindberg in the triple jump. 

The top returning sprinters, senior captain Marty Evans and junior Matt Bieszard, should open with strong performances in 200-meter dash and 400-meter dash. Senior Nathan Molina and sophomore Josh Fuller are also returning sprinters who should contribute in the 60-meter dash, as well as freshmen Daniel Jones and Lindberg. The 4x400 meter relay team, which narrowly placed second at last year's meet, will also look for a win this weekend.

Many of the middle distance runners will move up to the mile on Saturday to test their endurance, including junior Andrew Esposito, who competed at outdoor Heptagonals last season, and sophomore Christopher Ramsey, who ran 1:53.46 in the 800-meter run as a freshman. Freshmen John Cocco and James Shirvell will also race in Yale uniform for the first time. Along with junior Charlie Jaeger and sophomore Michael Pierce, the depth in the middle distance should front a strong team in the 4x800-meter relay.

The distance runners who competed during cross-country season will take a break this weekend, but senior Matt Bogdan, who qualified for NCAAs last season, will have a chance to race in the 3,000-meter run after recovering from illness in the fall.

Field events will start at 9:00 a.m. with the men's weight throw, and running events start at 11:15 a.m. with the women's 5,000-meter run. Results will be posted on Yalebulldogs.com after the meet.

Report by Miriam Cho '13, Yale Sports Publicity