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May 15 - SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Bethany College men’s and women’s track and field teams opened competition Thursday on the first day of the 2008 ECAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Springfield (Mass.) College.

The main highlight came on the women’s side, where sophomore Desiree Finley (Nanticoke, Pa./Hanover Area) broke a school record in the pole vault. She finished in a tie for 12th place overall by clearing 10 feet, 2.75 inches to surpass her own mark of 10-0 set earlier this season.

It was a light day for Bethany competitors, as Finley was the only female in action and the men’s team had just two in competition. Sophomore Matt Cruse (Naples, Fla./Barron Collier) earned a spot in Friday’s 110 hurdles final. He won his heat and will enter the championship race as the fourth seed after he posted a time of 15.07 in Thursday’s preliminaries.

In the 100, junior Taylor McNeil (Old Saybrook, Conn.) narrowly missed qualifying for the finals. He crossed in a time of 11.15 seconds, which was 10th overall out of 26 runners. McNeil finished just .03 seconds out of the eighth and final spot for tomorrow’s final.

Friday’s schedule will see numerous Bison in action. The opening event is the men’s 4x100 relay at 10:45 a.m. and the final BC runner in action will be McNeil in the men’s 200 at 2 p.m.