CLAREMONT, Calif. — Colby College junior Dom Kone of Bucksport is a national champion for the second time.
Kone won the 100-meter dash on Saturday night in a stadium record and school record time of 10.24 seconds. He tied the third-fastest time in NCAA history in the event and has the second-fastest clocking in the history of the NCAA Division III Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
Kone earned his third All-American honor and his second national title in his junior year. Kone won the 60-meter dash at the NCAA indoor meet back in March at Grinnell College in Iowa.
“He had a great performance, a great start,” Colby head coach Jared Beers said. “You never want to say before the race happens what you think could happen, but I felt if he did what he needed to do that he could [win].”
Kone beat the stadium record of 10.28 at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps. He was just slightly slower than the NCAA meet record of 10.19, set by Lincoln’s Chaz Clemons in 2002. The all-time NCAA record for the 100 dash is 10.18 by Mount Union’s Derrick Rippy in 1983.
Oneonta State’s Sean Bernstein finished in second place with a 10.44.
Kone has had false start disqualifications in the past, including one last weekend at the ECAC meet. He did not let that happen when it counted in the national meet.
“I set goals for myself before the New England Division III meet last year and the ECAC meet this year and both times I had a false start,” said Kone, with a laugh. “So I purposely didn’t set any goals this weekend. I just wanted to relax, breathe, and really not think of anything when I got to the blocks.”
Kone’s relaxation techniques worked and he got off to a fine start. After 50 meters he appeared in command and won fairly decisively for such a short sprint.
“I really put more emphasis on the 100 than the 60,” Kone said. “The 60 is very short and is over quickly, where the 100 you feel you are more at top speed for a longer time. There is a real adrenalin rush to the race.”
Kone heads back across the country from California to Maine and will have little time for rest. He heads to Virginia for an internship on Monday, working with University of Virginia professors on parasite research. The internship will take place in a lab in the mountains, making training a unique experience.
UMaine’s Conner advances to national final
At Tallahassee, Fla., the University of Maine’s Corey Conner took second in her heat of the 5,000 meters at the NCAA East Prelims on Saturday night to advance to the NCAA Championships.
Conner, the school and America East record holder in the event, took second in her heat of the 5,000 meters with a top-3 school time of 16 minutes, 22.77 seconds. She advances to the NCAA Championships June 6-9 at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa.
Also competing for the women’s side was freshman Robyn McFetters in the hammer throw. The America East Champion in the event, she took 40th with a top-5 school mark of 169 feet, 6 inches.
Bates, USM athletes earn All-American honors
At Claremont, Calif., Bates College junior David Pless, along with University of Southern Maine junior Molly Carl of York and senior Bethany Dumas of Augusta, earned All-American honors Saturday by finishing in the top eight in their respective events at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps’ Burns Stadium.
Pless won his sixth career All-America honor and his second of the NCAA championships by placing fourth in the shot put.
Pless, who was third in the discus throw on Thursday, was in eighth place among 20 competitors after the two preliminary flights, but vaulted into fourth place on his penultimate effort of 17.21 meters. On his final attempt, Pless put the shot 17.74 meters, or 58 feet, 2.5 inches, his best mark this outdoor season. Paul Davis of McMurry won at 60 feet, 10.5 inches.
Earlier on Saturday, Bates junior Andrew Wortham finished 10th out of 14 runners in the finals of the 3,000-meter steeplechase, with a time of 9 minutes, 19.40 seconds.
Carl placed sixth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase while Dumas finished fifth in the javelin. Carl covered the grueling steeplechase in 10:40.67 to break her school record by more than eight seconds. Carl ran her previous record time of 10:48.80 at the New England Division III Championships three weeks ago. Carl also earned All-American honors in cross-country in the fall, and participated in the NCAA Indoor Championships in March.
Junior Keri Lambert of Amherst College won the steeplechase with a stadium-record time of 10:27.32.
Dumas, who earned outdoor All-American honors a year ago in the pole vault, became the first USM competitor to be an All-American in two events. She earned a spot in the final round of the javelin with her last preliminary round throw of 42.13 meters (138 feet, 2 inches), a career best.
With her second of three additional throws in the final round, Dumas posted a school record mark of 43.01 meters (141 feet, 1 inch), eclipsing the previous record of 42.87 meters (140 feet, 8 inches) set by former All-American Kristen Sinclair in March 2004, to move into fifth place. This was the third straight year that Dumas has competed in the javelin at the NCAA outdoor championships.
Senior Britlyn Garrett of Cal Lutheran won the javelin with a throw of 47.14 meters (154 feet, 8 inches).
In the 400-meter hurdles final, USM freshman Hannah Wiley of Arudnel finished ninth in 1:02.05, missing All-American honors by less than three-tenths of second. Wiley had advanced to the finals by winning her heat race on Thursday with a time of 1:01.58.