Colonial Relays highlighted for Tribe by Rome's run, Frenia's throw

The William and Mary men's track team finished third of 46 scoring teams, and the W&M women were fourth of 45 scoring teams in the 52nd annual Berkeley Realty Colonial Relays track meet, held Thursday through Saturday at Zable Stadium.

The highlights of the meet were the stadium and meet record women's 10,000 meters by W&M junior All-American Regan Rome, and the school record men's discus throw by red-shirt senior Taylor Frenia, breaking a record that was 39 years old.

The Colonial Relays are the largest scored meet in the country (with the possible exception of the NCAA championships, depending on how many teams actually qualify for that meet), with 65 colleges and universities entered from all three NCAA divisions, and the National Junior College Athletic Association.

Princeton won for the men with 96 points, their first team title, followed in the top six by Rutgers (94), W&M (77), Mount Olive (46), Shippensburg (41) and Norfolk State (36). Other notable schools were George Mason (coached by former W&M coach Andy Gerard), 12th with 24 points, VCU (22), Christopher Newport (20), Charlotte (coached by another former W&M coach, Alex Gibby), 18th with 19 points, Virginia State (14), Hampton (12), Maryland (8) and Virginia Wesleyan (5).

For the women, Bucknell won by one point, 65-64, over Norfolk State, followed in the top eight by Duquesne (58), W&M (49 ¾), Rutgers (46), Delaware (45), Stony Brook (40) and Villanova (39). Other notables were Towson (31), James Madison (30), VCU (29 ¾), Richmond (25), George Mason (22), Hampton (20), Charlotte (13), Georgetown (11), and Christopher Newport (2).

Regan Rome, from Dallas, Penn., has only raced twice this outdoor season, and while early in the season, as of last weekend had the leading collegiate times in the nation in both the 10,000 meters and the mile (where she earlier this season ran 4:49.71). The 10,000 meters was her debut at that distance, and she ran a spectacular 33:36.19, which was also first nationally for all women, including pros.

Last year Rome won the Colonial Relays 5,000 meters (in 16:12.82). At 10,000, her time trails only multiple All-Americans Elaina Balouris and Emily Stites (who held the previous stadium and Colonial Relays record of 34:03.43, set in 2015) on the W&M list. Also in the 10,000 was junior Molly McKenna (former Peninsula Catholic standout), who debuted with a fourth-place 34:35.67, the fifth all-time performer for W&M.

For Taylor Frenia, the W&M school discus record had held since the 1978 Colonial Relays, when Mike Schay threw 172-0. Frenia, from Virginia Beach, challenged that record the past two years, and broke through Saturday with his school record 177-3, bettering his previous PR (171-6) by nearly seven feet. First in that event in 200-10, competing as an open competitor for Garage Strength, was Sam Mattis, son of former W&M thrower Marlon Mattis, and who had the leading discus throw in the U.S. last year (221-3, while competing then for Penn). Frenia also won his third shot put title in four years at Colonial with a throw of 56-7 ¼, the #4 all-time thrower for W&M. Junior Preston Richardson was second at 55-2 ¼, the #10 thrower for W&M, and also was ninth in the discus at 154-7.

Another W&M school record was set by junior Leia Mistowski, second in the hammer throw at 189-9 (to a meet record 195-9 by a Towson thrower), and two feet better than her own previous mark. Her throw would have won Colonial Relays in every other year but one.

In the men's 5,000 meters, the deepest event of the weekend for W&M, David Barney won in a PR 14:17.80. Also under 15 minutes were A.J. Tucker (fifth, 14:24.71), Ryan McGorty (sixth, 14:25.64), Riley Covert (14:33.18), Dawson Connell (York High grad, 14:36.14), Trevor Sleight (14:38.40) and J.P. Trojan (14:51.58). The Friday evening races were delayed about two hours when a line of storms produced thunder, lightning, heavy rains, and even a tornado watch. On Saturday, the men's 4x1,500-meter relay team of McGorty, Covert, Barney and Connell were second in 15:44.04, the fastest for W&M since 1999.

In other distance events, Evan Woods was second in the 3,000 meters in 8:31.71, Cole Clark ran a 1:53.60 in the 800 meters, and Tyler Cox-Philyaw had a 3:53.50 in the 1,500 meters. The distance medley team ran 10:16.79.

In the women's 5,000 meters, Grafton High grad Rachel Bloxom was fastest for W&M in 17:40.31, in a race where former Lafayette High grad Adriana Hooks, a senior at American, ran an impressive seventh-place 16:59.13.

Other field event highlights for the men were by Lucas Wratschko, second in the men's pole vault in 16-0 ¾, with Alex Hedrick and Carter Mathis were both at 14-5 ¼. The W&M 4x400-meter relay team was fourth in 3:15.84, No. 13 time ever for W&M, and the 4 x 200-meter team was 12th in 1:29.36, No. 7 ever for W&M.

Other notables for the women was Kacey Wheeler, second in the 400 meters in 56.21; Ashley Woodards (1:04.24) and Maggie Sullivan (1:04.81) at 400-meter hurdles; Julia Montgomery, an 11:33.36 in the 3,000-meter steeplechase; and Brianna Miller, with a 17-6 in the long jump. The 4x200-meter relay team ran 1:45.87, No. 12 all-time for W&M, and best since 2009. The sprint medley relay team ran 4:03.88 for fourth, No. 4 all-time for W&M and fastest since 1998. The 4x1,500-meter relay team was third in 18:56.51, and the 4x400-meter team ran 3:52.03 for seventh, No. 14 ever for W&M.

In the women's field event, Abigail Jones, Minna McFarland and Grace Becker all high jumped 5-5, tied for No. 10 all-time for W&M, Rochelle Evans was fifth in the shot put at 42-3 ½, Lauren Graves pole vaulted 10-11 ¾, while teammate Jordan Lipinski was at 10-6. In the triple jump Julia McDermott had a 36-10 ¼ and Brianna Miller a 36-4 ¾.

W&M third-year law student Greta Feldman, competing unattached, was second in the women's 1,500 meters in 4:16.11. W&M alumnus Ryan Gousse, who completed his W&M eligibility this past indoor track season, was third in the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase, in 9:12.81, an event where W&M senior Cavender Salvadori ran 9:26.93.

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