WALTHAM, Mass. – Defending champion Holt Sihvonen (Lebanon, Conn./Lyman Memorial HS) and record-breaking sophomore Stephanie Mattson (Smithfield, R.I./Smithfield HS) will be challenging for gold when the Bentley University Falcons compete in the 2017 Northeast-10 Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships this weekend at Stonehill College.
The meet, originally scheduled to start Friday, was moved to Saturday and Sunday due to the inclement weather with Saturday's action due to get underway at 2:00 pm. Live video will be available at www.stonehillskyhawks.tv, and a link to live results will be posted at www.bentleyfalcons.com.
Sihvonen, who won last year's championship by nearly 15 feet with a throw of 198'1", has the highest seed this year at 214'10", a distance that ranks as the ninth best in Division II and the second best in the East Region this spring. Merrimack's Kevin Russo has the next best throw at 193'9" but has only topped 165 feet that one time.
Mattson is the number seed in the long jump, her leap of 18'7.75" set last Saturday on the same track a school record and the best in the East Region so far this season. The number two qualifier is from New Haven, Roxanne Redwood, with an 18'3" best.
Mattson is also seeded fourth in the 400 meters (a school-record 57.08 seconds) and fifth in the triple jump (36'10.5", second best in program history). She competed in the same events last year, placing eighth in the long jump and tenth in the 400 and triple. Indoors, her highest finish was third in the 500.
Two Falcon seniors have number three seeds, Julia Morena (Boylston/Tahanto Reg. HS) in the 5,000 and Tim Bolick (Hopkinton/Hopkinton HS) in the 800. Morena also ran the 5,000 in 2016, finishing fifth, and was third at the same distance indoors. Bolick finished third in the 800 indoors after placing 12th at the 2016 outdoor championships.
Senior Erik Alatalo (Wilmington/Wilmington HS), the number four seed, and sophomore Cody Murphy (Dunbarton, N.H./Goffstown HS), who was sixth a year ago, will be two of the six Falcons who'll be competing in the 10,000.
Junior David Hernandez (Tokyo, Japan) is seeded sixth in the high jump and junior Beau Kraft (Bayport, N.Y./Bayport-Blue Point HS) is one of four Falcons listed seven on the entry list. Seventh last year in the discus, he is listed seventh in both the discus and shot this time around.
The others are freshman Josh Gettings (Lowell/Lowell HS) in the 400 hurdles and a pair of juniors, Seamus Higgins (Randolph, N.J./Randolph HS) in the 5,000 and Nick Skarin (Sunapee, N.H./ Sunapee HS) in the 800.
A pre-meet poll of conference coaches forecasted both Bentley teams to finish ninth overall. Eleven men's teams and a dozen women's will be competing.