May 16 - SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Sophomores Jodi Bodo (Steubenville, Ohio/Steubenville Catholic Central) and Matt Cruse (Naples, Fla./Barron Collier) both broke school records as the 2008 ECAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships came to a close at Springfield (Mass.) College.
Bodo’s record-setting performance came in the 400-meter dash. Bodo broke the tape in 58.14 seconds to take first place in her heat by nearly two full seconds. Her time, which shattered her own school record (59.48) by almost a second and a half, also placed her sixth overall and left her .64 away from provisionally qualifying for NCAA Championships.
Cruse continued his quest to qualify for nationals in the 110 hurdles. He placed third in the event on Friday with a time of 14.51 seconds, which shaved another .06 from his own mark. Cruse finished behind only a pair of senior hurdlers from Moravian (Pa.) College in Beresford Brown (14.37) and Nate Tussey (14.45), who are ranked first and fifth, respectively, in the nation. More importantly, Cruse‘s time was the sixth-fastest in Division III this year.
Although he hasn’t automatically qualified for NCAA’s, Cruse is in good shape to be invited to next week’s national championship meet at Wisconsin-Oshkosh. He has also provisionally qualified in the 400 hurdles, but he did not better his time at ECAC’s and is ranked 19th heading into Saturday’s last chance meets. Cruse will find out by Monday if he’s earned a spot at the national meet.
Other Bison men who competed Friday included freshman Clint Wilson (Moundsville, W.Va./Bishop Donahue), who finished 10th in the high jump with a season-best effort of 6-2.25, junior Taylor McNeil (Old Saybrook, Conn.), who took 17th in the 200 (22.53), and the men’s 4x100 relay team, who did not finish their race due of a bad handoff.
For the women, senior Lauren Spegal (Bethel Park, Pa.) placed 12th in the shot put (37-7.25), sophomore Desiree Finley (Nanticoke, Pa./Hanover Area), who set a new school-record in the pole vault Thursday, was 26th in the 400 hurdles and the 4x100 relay team finished 14th with a time of 51.33.