In staying close to home, DiMaiti goes far

Graduating senior co-captain Drew DiMaiti poses for a portrait at the Ellis Oval on May 1. Alina Strileckis / The Tufts Daily

Graduating senior co-captain Drew DiMaiti has been the backbone of the Tufts men’s track and field team this year. DiMaiti, consistently a top performer for the Jumbos, garnered numerous first-place finishes throughout the 2017–18 season and is a big reason why the indoor and outdoor teams have been so successful.

One of the Medford, Mass. native‘s most notable performances this season was at the Div. III New England Championships in February. In the 600 meters, DiMaiti set both a personal record and a facility record with a time of 1:20.60 at Middlebury’s Virtue Field House. DiMaiti also earned All-American honors at the NCAA Indoor Championships for his performance as a member of Tufts’ distance medley relay team, which finished eighth in a time of 10:00.49.

DiMaiti continued his success in the outdoor season, winning the 400-meter dash at the Point Loma Invitational on March 24. Of the six meets in which DiMaiti has run the 400-meter hurdles this spring, he has won the event five times. After finishing second in the 400-meter hurdles at the NESCAC Championships, he successfully defended his title at the regional championship meet on May 5, winning by nearly half a second. As of May 6, he held the ninth best time in Div. III in the 400-meter hurdles and the 31st best time in the 400 meters.

In graduating, DiMaiti will leave behind an impressive legacy for future Tufts runners to admire. He has already competed in four NCAA championship meets during his Tufts career and will travel to La Crosse, Wis. for his final one from May 24–26. DiMaiti will look to improve on his performance last year, when he finished 10th, one spot outside the qualifying positions, in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 53.44 seconds.

Perhaps more importantly, the men’s track program has improved tremendously during DiMaiti’s time at Tufts. After placing 13th overall at the 2015 New England Div. III Outdoor Championships, the Jumbos finished fifth this year. The team tied for 24th at the NCAA Outdoor Championships when DiMaiti was a first-year but tied for 16th last year.

“I am very grateful for the success we have had as a team during my time here,” DiMaiti said. “In particular, winning the NESCAC championship my [first] year and winning the Div. III New England Indoor [Championships] the past two years were unforgettable moments. I have always been happy to see personal improvement in my performances in my favorite races such as the hurdles, the 400 and the 600 during my time at Tufts.”

Looking back, DiMaiti has fond memories of his collegiate career, which he will find hard to leave behind.

“I am very sad to be ending my track career at Tufts,” DiMaiti said. “It has really been the most amazing experience of my life. Fortunately, I have made many memories and close friends during my time with [the team], and I will be able to keep these forever. The track team is very special. It has always been a tight-knit group, willing to work hard and battle together as a unit. I have especially been honored to serve as a captain for my senior season.”