DEDHAM, MA – Senior Doug Caves (Oxford, MA) won the 400 meter dash and earned All-New England honors in four events as UMass Lowell finished runner-up – matching its best finish ever – at the New England Track and Field Championship Saturday at Northeastern University’s Solomon Track.

The River Hawks compiled 90 points and remained even with champion University of Rhode Island (95.33 points) until the final two events on the day.

“We ran about as well as we could. We figured we could score between 80 and 90 points if we did very well,” said UML Head Coach Gary Gardner. “We scored 90 and it just wasn’t quite enough.

“We would have been the first non-Division I team to win a New England Men’s Track and Field Championship, which would have been very special,” Gardner noted. “The men’s team really stepped up and did a great job.”

Boston College placed third with 50.33 points and was followed by the University of New Hampshire (47 points) and American International College (45.33).

Nine UMass Lowell athletes and two relay teams earned All-New England status, which is awarded to the top eight individuals and relay teams in each event. Seven River Hawks earned the distinction multiple times.

Caves captured the 400 meters in a sterling 46.76 seconds and ascended to No. 4 on the most recent NCAA Division II list. Freshman Craig Bennett (Milton, MA) placed fifth in 48.31.

Caves’ result in the 400 highlighted one of the most successful individual efforts in the team’s history as he also placed second in the 200 meter dash in 21.89 seconds, just behind Dominic Smith of AIC, who won the title in 21.67. Freshman Evan White (Tewksbury, MA) took third in the 200 in 21.99.

Caves and White also ran legs on UMass Lowell’s 4X100 meter relay team, which placed second in 41.89 seconds, just behind Wheaton (41.02). Joining them was senior Robert Liekweg (Salem, NH) and freshman Josh Adams (Methuen, MA).

Liekweg also gave a stellar individual effort in the 400 meter hurdles, placing second in 53.03 seconds and improving his standing to 15th on the Division II list.

Caves then anchored a 46.7-second leg on UMass Lowell’s 4X400 meter relay team, which placed fourth in 3:13.97. Bennett led off with a 48.5-second split while Liekweg followed in 48.6 and freshman Scott Cannistraro (Littleton, MA) in 49.4.

Junior Angus MacDonald (Methuen, MA) and graduate Ruben Sanca (Boston, MA), who finished second and first, respectively, Friday in the 5,000 meters, placed fifth and sixth in the 1,500 meters Saturday. MacDonald posted a time of 3:49.45 to inch up to 18th on the Division II list while Sanca finished in 3:50.10.

As he did at the New England indoor championship, senior William Nguidjoi (Lawrence, MA) completed the double in the jumps. On Friday, he placed seventh in the long jump with a distance of 22 feet, 2.5 inches and followed Saturday with a fifth-place showing in the triple jump with a distance of 44’ 4.75’’.

Also enjoying a stellar result was senior Steve O’Brien (Groton, MA), who placed fourth in the 3,000 meter steeplechase in 9:17.57. Junior Cory Murray (Methuen, MA) took fifth in the shot put with a throw of 51’ 5.5’’.

Sophomore Danny Wang (Haverhill, MA) placed 10th in the 800 meters in 1:53.92, just 0.12 seconds short of All-New England honors. Wang also ran a 1:55.4 leg on UMass Lowell’s 4X800 meter relay team which took 10th in 7:45.69.

Joining Wang was freshman Chris Estrella (Lowell, MA) who ran a 1:59.6 split; junior Brody Griffiths (Woburn, MA), who ran a 1:58.9 leg; and sophomore Adam Hanley (Methuen, MA), who ran a 1:59.8 leg.

UMass Lowell hosts the New Balance High Performance Invitational at the Cushing Field Complex next Saturday at 4:00.