Chauvin, Nkwah Set School Records At Little East Championships

GORHAM, Maine -- The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth women's indoor track and field team broke a pair of school records to earn a fourth place finish at the 2014 Little East Conference Championships this afternoon at the Costello Sports Complex. 

The Corsairs accounted for 81.50 points to finish ahead of the University of Massachusetts Boston (71) and Eastern Connecticut State University in the six-team field.  University of Southern Maine cruised to the program's 14th consecutive conference championship with 208.50 points, followed by Keene State College (104) and Rhode Island College (90).

The New England Alliance Championship is run in conjunction with the Little East Championships, combining four participants from the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC). Southern Maine raised the annual championship trophy with 184 total points, easily outdistancing runner up Bridgewater State University (99).  Keene State College (92), Rhode Island College (67), and Westfield State University (67) finished ahead of UMass Dartmouth (59) in the 10-team standings.

Senior Krista Chauvin (Seekonk, Mass.) established a new Corsairs and Little East Championship meet standard in the weight throw.  She registered a throw of 17.11 meters (56-01.75) to earn a new career-high and surpass the previous conference record holder, Hannah Patterson (Southern Maine), toss (53-08) from 2012.  Junior Bailey Burke (South Yarmouth, Mass.) placed third in the weight throw with a heave of 13.58 meters (44-06.75).

Freshman Esther Nkwah (Roslindale, Mass.) broke the UMass Dartmouth program record in the triple jump, covering 11.10  meters (36-05.00) to win the event.  Senior Ezra Banks (Roxbury, Mass.) registered a leap of 10.35 meters (33-11.50) to place third in the 12-team field.

The Corsairs' 4x200-meter relay team of sophomore LaQuaysia Anderson-Jenkins (Brighton, Mass.), sophomore Barbara Okafor (Hyde Park, Mass.), sophomore Michel-Le Meranda (Somerville, Mass.), and freshman Gelynne Berger (Somerville, Mass.) won the race with a combined time of one minute, 46.25 seconds.  The UMass Dartmouth quartet performance was even more impressive considering they were placed in the unseeded heat.

The Corsairs also sat atop the 4x400-meter relay standings.  The team of Anderson-Jenkins, Berger, Meranda, and freshman Hunter Carden (Branford, Conn.) combined to post a winning time of four minutes, 9.49 seconds to comfortably defeat the Anchorwomen foursome.

UMass Dartmouth will return to action on Saturday, Feb. 22, when the Corsairs travel to the New England Division III Championships.