Today: Apr 21, 2024

Owl Sighting: Sprinter looking for chance at National Championship


Since arriving to campus, Stenson Jean- Baptiste has had a presence on relay teams over the years and has played a big role in each.

This season, Jean-Baptiste is a piece of two relay teams on the Southern men’s indoor track and field.

Jean-Baptiste is one of three senior captains chosen for this 2011-12 track and field season along with fellow seniors Nick Fedor and Joseph Poulsen.

Southern is currently No. 9 nationally in Division II. Two of their highlights have been the distance medley relay and the 4×400 relay teams.

The Owls moved up three spots last week to No.12 after a fourth-place finish at the Metropolitan Championships on Jan. 24.

Jean-Baptiste went to Stratford High School where he also played football and basketball. He has been a part of relay teams since he started at Southern.

Last season, Jean-Baptiste was an All-American and was tabbed All-New England in the 4×400 relay and 400 meters (indoors). He holds All-Region selection honors in the 4×400 relay (indoor and outdoor), 400 meters and 4×100 relay (outdoor), and a conference championship in the 4×100 (outdoors).

SCSU men’s track and field head coach, John Wallin, said picking the captains was not a hard choice.

“[Jean-Baptiste] is an All-American and has accomplished a lot,” Wallin said. “He is a veteran of the 4×400 team. Nick [Fedor] is one of the best throwers. He is a senior leader. He is a great guy to be around. Joe [Poulsen] is a captain anyway because he has been here the longest. He is a great guy. They have showed great leadership and it was an easy selection.”

Jean-Baptiste is currently a part of two 4×400 teams that might have an opportunity at a national championship.

“It was a responsibility on me to keep performing the same way I have been performing,” Jean-Baptiste said. “They see some leadership in me and in my work ethic. I hope to continue to be a leader for the team.”

The first team also includes Fred Boateng, Thomas Phommalinh and Twayne Forth; together, they holds the 12th-best time in the nation at 3:17.24 from the Metropolitan Championships.

A second relay team, ranked sixth in the nation with a time of 3:15.91 from the 2012 Great Dane Classic, also includes Selasi Lumax, Forth and Logan Sharpe .

As the indoor season enters the championship portion of the schedule, Wallin said this is the point when he has wanted to show off some of the talent to some of the top schools in the country.

“[The 4×400 team] did pretty good at the Metropolitan Championships and at the Great Dane,” Wallin said. “I see that they know what’s up and how to win in meets and to run fast.”

Jean-Baptiste said there is always room for improvements going forward toward the end of the indoor season.

“I think I am doing pretty well,” Jean-Baptiste said. “I am mentally prepared but I think I am capable of much more. So far, I think I am at a good point. Our performances [in the 4×400] have been going good. We all know we want to win a national championship. We need to put that in mind to have mental preparation and do what we have to do to compete with that on the road to nationals.”

The Owls will now turn to the Northeast-10 Conference Championships in Boston, Mass. on Feb. 18 and will look to record their 19th consecutive conference championship—their 10th straight indoor title

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