Track and field team opens promising season at Smith invitational

Thrower Emma Doyle (left) and sprinter/jumper Lucy Stenberg (right) captain the 2022-23 Mount Holyoke track and field team. (Bob Blanchard/RJB Sports)
Thrower Emma Doyle (left) and sprinter/jumper Lucy Stenberg (right) captain the 2022-23 Mount Holyoke track and field team. (Bob Blanchard/RJB Sports)

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. -- The Mount Holyoke College track and field team and its intriguing mix of event groups will officially begin its first season under head coach Jennifer "Jay" Hartshorn on Saturday at Smith College's Mary Grinaker Invitational.

The meet at Smith, beginning Saturday at 10:30am, will provide an early chance to compete before the bulk of the indoor track and field season gets going in January. Mount Holyoke's next meet will be the Branwen Smith-King Invitational at Tufts University Jan. 20-21.

Hartshorn, a successful veteran coach at both Bates College and Syracuse University, may have trouble at times on Saturday prioritizing what event to watch, with exciting personnel among the Lyons' sprinters, jumpers and throwers. At least there won't be any distance running events to further distract her.

Mount Holyoke's distance running group includes the backbone of the Mount Holyoke cross country team that recently completed a season marked by significant improvement from the likes of sophomore Tessa Lancaster (Mansfield, Mass.), sophomore Greta Trapp (La Crosse, Wis.), sophomore Olivia Johnson (Mount Desert, Maine) and junior Bridget Hall (Arlington, Mass.). The group is joined by a talented pair of middle-distance runners in sophomore Kim Beaver (Agawam, Mass.) and senior Devan Ravino (West Kingston, R.I.).

Hartshorn looks forward to seeing the track and field team, sans distance runners, compete for the first time on Saturday. She has high hopes for a small but talented group of sprinters and jumpers, led by captain Lucy Stenberg (Stonington, Conn.) and sophomore Aria Mallare (Chicago, Ill.). First-year Elle Rimando (Mililani, Hawaii), who recently completed a strong rookie volleyball season, brings impressive credentials from her high school career.

Hartshorn is particularly excited about Mount Holyoke's crew of throwers, led by assistant coach Haniyf Carr. Anticipated top performers among Lyons throwers include captain Emma Doyle (West Lebanon, N.H.), along with sophomore Lize Brown (New London, Conn.) and sophomore Kara Setal (Naugatuck, Conn.), whom she hopes to have joining the team in January.

"We have 10 throwers, including four newcomers," said Hartshorn. "We're really looking forward to developing this group and scoring some points in the throwing events. This is a really exciting part of the team."

The indoor season leads up to the New England Division III Indoor Championships Feb. 24-25 in Boston and the NCAA Division III Championships March 10-11 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Mount Holyoke begins the outdoor track and field season March 25 with the Elmer Swanson Classic at Wesleyan University. The NEWMAC Championships take place April 29-30 at MIT, beginning the outdoor championship season.