Rowan’s Amara Conte, Jah’mere Beasley, Justin Bishop and Francis Terry teamed up Saturday to run the fastest 4-by-4 in NCAA Division 3 this year.
Racing in the Philadelphia Metropolitan Collegiate Invitational at Franklin Field, Rowan ran 3:12.35, finishing just behind Penn [3:12.16] and beating Division 1 schools St. Joe’s [3:15.63] and Villanova [3:17.34].
After Conte opened with a 49.01, Beasley split 48.20 and Bishop 47.06 to set up Terry’s 48.09 anchor leg.
Conte is a freshman from Ferris High in Jersey City, but there three other legs are from South Jersey – Beasley is a sophomore from Sterling, Bishop a senior from Mainland Regional and Terry a senior, also from Sterling.
Rowan’s previous-best time this spring was a 3:15.86 in a meet at West Chester University earlier this month with a lineup that included Terry leading off along with junior Hunter Barbieri of Egg Harbor Township, Conte and Vincent Delle of Old Bridge.
That time is No. 6 in Division 3 so far this year, and another Rowan 4-by-4 – 3:16.53 in Glassboro two weeks ago – is No. 9. That team included Barbieri, Conte, Bishop and Terry.
With their 3:12.35, the Profs knocked Mount Union of Alliance, Ohio, out of the top spot on the 2021 NCAA Division 3 list. Mount Union ran 3:13.43 at a meet at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.
Rowan’s time is just over two seconds off the school record of 3:10.10 set by Deptford’s Tommy Adams and Overbrook’s Ronald Moore along with Keith Thomas and Willie Lawson in 1985 when the school was known as Glassboro State. That quartet went on to win the NCAA Division 3 title in Granville, Ohio, in 3:11.57.
One thing about that 1985 team: I can’t for the life of me figure out where the Profs ran that 3:10.10 (and I covered them for the Gloucester County Times!). If you were on that team or remember the race, let me know!