U of M Women - Wolverines Take Seven Titles at Kent State
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What You Need to Know
» No. 14 U-M recorded 20 top-five finishes overall, highlighted by seven event titles.
» The Wolverines set new nine collegiate-best times or marks across seven events.
» The Maize and Blue set several times or marks that would qualify among the nation's top 30 performances, pending results from elsewhere around the nation, including a top-10 time from Gina McNamara at 800 meters.
Site: Kent, Ohio (Kent State University Field House)
Event: Doug Raymond Invitational
U-M Team Result: Non-scoring
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Jan. 23 -- at Notre Dame Invitational (South Bend, Ind.), 11 a.m.
KENT, Ohio -- The 14th-ranked University of Michigan women's track and field team won seven event titles behind the efforts of nine new collegiate bests on Saturday (Jan. 16) at Kent State's Doug Raymond Invitational. A big day from the middle-distance and distance event groups paved the way for a successful day, while sprinters and hurdlers also had a strong showing.
In the 800-meter race, U-M recorded a one-two finish, with senior/junior Gina McNamara taking the win with a time of 2:10.57, a top-10 time nationally, pending results from around the nation. McNamara was glad to get on the larger surface at Kent State, noting the longer straights and more forgiving curves.
"Coach Mike has been emphasizing being competitive within the race, so it felt great to be able to go out and take the race from wire to wire," said McNamara.
The high-volume practice week had McNamara feeling confident in herself and her teammates.
"It was definitely a confidence booster going with my teammates and knowing that we would have control of the race," she said. "Competitive racing really clicked more this week, and girls went out in every category knowing that they wanted to be competitive. You could see it on their faces. The team depth and leadership is the best I've seen in the last four years I've been at Michigan."
"We're challenged in practice every day, which makes everyone better, and we're pushing and pulling one another through with the Big Ten championship in mind. It'll be exciting to get the whole squad out and competing at Notre Dame next week."
Sophomore Holly Petrusson ran 2:14.29 to finish runner-up, while sophomore/freshman Brooke Callaghan was seventh with a new collegiate best.
Sophomore/freshman Rachel Barrett won the mile run, clocking 4:55.34, to shave nearly three seconds off her time from last weekend. Fifth-year senior Anna Pasternak finished in third (5:01.52), and junior Corinne Florie (5:03.04) came in fourth.
In the 3K race, sophomore Ellie Leonard was the winner with a significant PR, leading an effort that saw the Wolverines claim three of the top four places. She ran 9:59.11, ahead of senior/junior Taylor Manett in third (10:16.14) and sophomore/freshman Kali Dent (10:17.59) in fourth.
In the 60-meter hurdles, sophomore Sami Michell qualified for the final as the top seed, running 8.84, the only time less than nine seconds. She then improved to 8.80 in the final, beating the field by more than one tenth of a second.
Freshman Lauren Rodriguez qualified eighth at 9.19 but placed sixth in 9.30, and her classmate Jeryne Fish ran 9.02 to qualify in fifth but placed eighth in the final at 9.92.
In the 60-meter dash, sophomore Meghan Marias also earned a victory after qualifying as the top seed. She ran 7.77 to win her heat and then clocked 7.81 to take the victory, the only sub-7.9 time in the field. Freshman Courtney Bostic ran 8.19 for 10th.
Meanwhile, Marias also ran in the 200-meter race, finishing fourth in 25.82. Senior co-captain Cindy Ofili made her season debut in the same event and took the win in 24.36, currently a top-30 time nationally.
U-M recorded a pair of top-five finishes at 400 meters as well. Seniors Maya Long (55.88, top-30 nationally) and Emily Wee (57.00) earned runner-up and fifth-place finishes, respectively.
The 4x400-meter relay team also ran this weekend, with two squads competing. The 'A' team of Long, Michell, Wee and Ofili was won with a cushion greater than five seconds (3:55.38), with the 'B' team of Marias, Rodriguez, Florie and Callaghan in fifth at 4:10.00.
Sophomore Bailey Baker led the way in the weight throw, finishing fourth with a personal-best distance of 16.47 meters (54-0.5 ft.). Baker advanced to the final throwing 16.18 meters (53-1 ft.) then threw her best mark on the first and third attempts in the final round.
Sophomore Kayla Deering and freshman Maegan McCarthy also advanced to the final. Deering threw 15.28 meters (50-1.75 ft.) on her final attempt to finish seventh, and McCarthy earned a top-10 finish in ninth (14.56 meters; 47-9.25 ft.), improving nearly two feet on her mark from last weekend. Freshman Briana Nelson finished 14th.
Deering and McCarthy also competed in the shot put, where Deering placed third, matching her best mark of the day in the final round (13.45 meters; 44-1.5 ft.), and McCarthy finished sixth (12.22 meters; 40-1.25 ft.). Nelson placed 11th at 11.25 meters.
U-M had four athletes in the pole vault competition, led by senior Claire Tewksbury and sophomore Sarah Uhlian, who finished fourth and fifth, respectively, after clearing 3.56 meters (11-8 ft.). For Tewksbury, it marks her third height and a new PR, which she cleared on the first attempt. Uhlian cleared the mark on the second attempt of her second height.
Sophomores/freshmen Tori Chapin and Brooke Lambert finished seventh and eighth, respectively, as both vaulted 3.41 meters (11-2.25 ft.), which was a new collegiate best for Chapin.
Jennifer Suhr, the current No. 1-ranked pole vaulter in the world and world-record holder at 5.02 meters, competed at the meet unattached and cleared 4.91 meters (16-1.25 ft.). Suhr also attempted 5.03 meters, coming close but ultimately falling short of setting a new world standard.
Freshman Jeryne Fish placed third in the long jump, breaking the 18-foot mark (5.51 meters; 18-1 ft.) on her first attempt of the final.
The next time U-M takes the track will be at the Notre Dame Invitational in South Bend, Indiana, for the biggest meet of the indoor season to this point. Events at Notre Dame's Loftus Sports Center will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday (Jan. 23).
COLLEGIATE PERSONAL BESTS
Courtney Bostic -- 8.19
Jeryne Fish -- 9.02
Brooke Callaghan -- 2:17.11
Rachel Barrett -- 4:55.34
Ellie Leonard -- 9:59.11
Kali Dent -- 10:17.59
Bailey Baker -- 16.47 meters (54-0.5 ft.)
Claire Tewksbury -- 3.56 meters (11-8 ft.)
Tori Chapin -- 3.41 meters (11-2.25 ft.)
Communications Contact: Chad Shepard