by Taylor Martin
This week we are flashing back to the 2004-05 men’s track and field season.
Back Row (L-R): Peter Lord (asst. coach), Adam Samuel, Nicholas McBride, Mihira Lakshman, John Corbit, Chris Algar, Andy Leiper.
Middle Row (L-R): John Plummer, Kevin Bourgeois (asst. coach), Cary McNeil, Seth Taylor, Joshua Davidson, Neil Martindale (asst. coach), Jennifer Payne (asst. coach), Dan Hennigar (head coach).
Back Row (L-R): Al Yarr (assoc. coach), Chris Goulet, Paul Bennett, Peter Davidson, Gerard Bray, Paul Chafe, David Antle (trainer).
Missing from photo: Tyler Durham.
The Tigers opened their season at the New Brunswick warm-up meet with Aaron Samuel finishing third in the 60m and Paul Bennet throwing a personal best in the shot put.
During the first half of the season, distance runners seized top finishes with Chris Algar and John Corbit finishing first and second in two meets in the 3000m and Paul Chafe taking a win in the 3000m later on. Mihira Lakshman led the Tigers in the 1000m heading into the second half of the season.
At the Bleu et Or open, thrower Tyler Durham continued to improve his shot throw and ended up seizing a win, along with a top finish in the weight throw.
At the annual McGill Team Challenge, the Tigers put in some impressive performances. Chafe led the way winning gold in the 3000m followed by a personal best performance from Corbit in the same event on top of a fourth-place finish in the 1500m. Durham continued to take the lead in the shot put.
The Tigers were able to travel to Boston, MA to compete at Boston University’s Valentines Meet before heading to the New Brunswick provincial meet in Gagetown the following weekend. Corbit led the way for the Tigers in the mile run at Boston University while it was Samuel who led in Gagetown with yet another dramatic improvement in the 60m. Cary McNeil earned personal bests in the 60m, long jump and triple jump events, while Bennet led the Tigers throwers with gold medal finishes in the shot put and weight throw.
The AUS championships were expected to be a close competition for the team title but the Tigers came out strong winning 13 of 17 events to win the meet by 61 points. Samuel earned a berth at the CIS championship with his 60m win. In field events, Seth Taylor edged Durham in the shot put to win gold and again in weight throw just ahead of Bennet. McNeil broke an age-old record with his first-place finish in triple jump, auto-qualifying him for the CIS championships.
The Tigers traveled to the University of Manitoba for the CIS championships. Chafe continued to lead the distance runners, with a sixth-place finish in the 3000m. Samuel, who came to CIS after upsetting many athletes with his national final auto qualifying run at AUS, finished seventh.
Dan Hennigar received AUS coach of the year, while Chafe received AUS male athlete of the year and AUS track athlete of the year. McNeil was named the AUS field athlete of the year and Peter Davidson earned AUS Championship MVP honours. John Corbit was named the AUS male rookie of the year.