MEDFORD - Senior Talia Toland of the sailing team and sophomore Walter Wagude of the men's cross country team were named Jumbo Athletes of the Week today.
After a two-year hiatus from sailing competition at Tufts, Toland returned in style this weekend. She skippered the Jumbos to an A division victory at the season-opening Toni Deutsch Regatta on the Charles River. The Kirkland, Washington native had last sailed for Tufts in the fall 2019 when she won the New England single-handed championship and was fourth nationally in the event. She had skippered Jumbo dinghies at national semifinals in the springs of 2018 and 2019. In her return this weekend she led Tufts' A division boat to a 55 score in 14 races to edge host MIT (57) in the group. Sailing with crew Devin Hart, she won the division by racing to a pair of first-place finishes in the final two races. She had been second in A division the last time Tufts competed at the Toni Deutsch race (2019).
In the first collegiate race of his career, Wagude - a sophomore from Migori, Kenya - won the Trinity College Bantam Invitational on Saturday. He recorded a first-place time of 16:21.2 over five kilometers, leading the Jumbos to first place out of seven teams. In addition to battling slow conditions due to a hilly and muddy course at Wickham Park, Wagude also overcame a race management error to win. He had run with a pack of Jumbos through the first half of the race and then took the lead with about a mile to go and gapped the field. However, on the finishing stretch, the lead vehicle pulled off and guided Wagude the wrong way at the finish, which allowed Trinity's Travis Martin to catch up and pass him with 200 meters to go. Wagude was able to sprint ahead again to pass him at the finish line though, winning by less than a second. Trinity's Martin (whose time was 16:22.1) was the 2021 NESCAC Track & Field Performer of the Year.