Men’s and women’s indoor track season starts Saturday

Kallie Nixon '14 (left) and Sean Enos '15 (right) will help lead their respective teams in 2014. (Photos by Tom Leonard '78)

LEWISTON, Maine – The Bates College men's and women's indoor track programs open their seasons on Saturday when the Bobcats host Colby and MIT at noon in Merrill Indoor Gymnasium as the teams look to build off of impressive seasons a year ago.

The Bobcats will also host the Bates Invitational from Jan. 17-18 as they work their way toward the New England Division III Championships on Feb. 21-22 and potentially the NCAA Championships from March 14-15.

Both teams boast veteran leadership in the coaching staffs as Al Fereshetian enters his 19th year at the helm of the men's side, and Jennifer "Jay" Hartshorn begins her ninth season as the head coach of the women's program.

Men's Outlook

Last winter, the men's indoor track and field program enjoyed a historic season, sending a record eight student-athletes to the NCAA Championships and seeing David Pless '13 take home his third title in the indoor shot put.

The Bobcats return four athletes who took part in last year's indoor NCAAs, including junior Sean Enos (Lynnfield, Mass.) and three members of the squad's distance medley relay: seniors Noah Graboys (Glencoe, Ill.) and Ben Levy (Belmont, Mass.) as well as junior John Stansel (Newburyport, Mass.). Two other runners who competed in 2013 outdoor NCAAs, junior middle-distance runner Mark McCauley (Cumberland, Maine) and senior distance runner Mike Martin (Slatersville, R.I.), also bolster the roster.

Bates will have strong results from last season to use as a launching point for 2014. The Bobcats won the Tufts Invitational, its season opener, in addition to the Maine State Championships while coming in second at the New England Championships and finishing fifth as a team at the NCAA Championships in 2013, en route to a second straight year as a Top 5 track and field and cross country program, as determined by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

The program will need to replace a talented group of graduating seniors which included Pless, a 10-time All-American, James LePage, the program record holder in the 600, 800, and 1,000, and record holders in the 60-meter hurdles (Anthony Haeuser) and heptathlon (David Hardison), but Fereshetian looks forward to a new crop of athletes gaining opportunities to demonstrate their abilities.

Men's Roster Breakdown

Total Athletes: 60 | Captains: Sean Enos, Logan Greenblatt, Ben Levy, Jarret McKallagat, John Wisener

Seniors: 10 | Juniors: 13 | Sophomores: 18 | First-years: 19

Distance: 28 | Middle-Distance: 22 | Sprints: 21

Hurdles: 5 | Throws: 6 | Jumps: 7

(Some athletes accounted for under multiple events)

Women's Outlook

The women's indoor track team will seek to further its momentum from a year ago, when the team won the Bates Invitational, came in second at the Maine State Championships and 11th in the New England Division III Championships.

The Bobcats welcome back seven student-athletes who gained All-New England honors last winter, either as individuals or as part of a relay team which should provide the team a strong foundation.

Returning All-New England performers include junior and one-time All-American Sarah Fusco (Cheshire, Conn.) in the 600 meters, sophomore Isabelle Unger (Charlotte, Vt.) in the 800 meters, and sophomore Mary Krathwohl (Ipswich, Mass.) in the triple jump, while Fusco, Unger, sophomores Melanie Ehrenberg (Rumson, N.J.), Isabel Ferguson (Bainbridge Island, Wash.), Elena Schroeder (Clinton, Conn.) and senior captain and three-time NCAA Championship competitor Kallie Nixon (Medfield, Mass.) all helped relay teams earn All-New England status last indoor season.

Bates graduated Elizabeth "Bud" Arens '13, who represented the Bobcats at the 2013 NCAA Championships in the 800-meter run, but the team does return two athletes who set program records last year. Fusco set the mark for the 600 meter dash in 1:36.14, and sophomore Alexis Dickinson (Brunswick, Maine) achieved a new program best with an 8.09 in the 60 meter dash.

Junior jumper/thrower Colby Gail (Topsham, Maine) and senior sprinter and captain Angeleque Hartt (Bronx, N.Y.) are also primed for big things this indoor season, while new standouts are also expected to emerge.

Women's Roster Breakdown

Total Athletes: 54 | Captains: Abby Alexander, Angeleque Hartt, Kallie Nixon

Seniors: 15 | Juniors: 10 | Sophomores: 21 | First-years: 9

Distance: 13 | Middle-Distance: 16 | Sprints: 9

Hurdles: 9 | Throws: 8 | Jumps: 10

(Some athletes accounted for under multiple events)