Pendleton shines at Silverston Invitational

For the Daily
Published February 20, 2011

While many members of the Michigan women’s track and field team took this past weekend off to rest before the Big Ten Indoor Championships less than a week away, Erin Pendleton used Saturday’s Silverston Invitational as an opportunity to perfect her technique.

The sophomore from Lindsey, Ohio stole the show in the early-goings of the meet at the Michigan Indoor Track Building, posting a first-place finish in weight throw and a second-place performance in shot put.

“I’ve been experimenting with three turns (during the weight throw),” Pendleton said. “So I did two turns during prelims and three turns during finals.”

Pendleton’s experimentation surely paid off, as the Wolverine track star led with an 18.14 meter throw. Michigan assistant coach Anne Takacs-Grieb thinks the change in technique will lead to only good things for Pendleton.

“She achieved (the three-turn weight throw) today – about the same distance as her two,” Takacs-Grieb said. “And hopefully, once she perfects the three, it’ll give her a school record.”

With the conference championships on Saturday in West Lafayette, Ind., this new addition to Pendleton’s field repertoire could not have come at a better time. And she can’t help being optimistic about her prospects.

“I want to make the top three for weight (throw) – get a medal,” Pendleton said.

Unfortunately, her chances to score in the shot put event may not be as good.

“The throws in the shot put are so high this year,” Takacs-Grieb said. “I think you’d need to throw like 49 feet to score.”

Still, Pendleton has reason to celebrate. She set a personal record, even if only by a centimeter, of 13.44 meters in the shot put on Saturday.

Of course, both Pendleton’s and Takac-Grieb’s primary focuses were on the team.

And even though Pendleton participated in Saturdays’ meet, she believes it may be a good thing that so many athletes sat out.

“It gave more girls the opportunity to compete and better their marks and their chances to go to Big Tens,” she said.

Ultimately, Pendleton proved this weekend that every last bit of preparation is key.

“As far as the team goes, our goal is to go out there and beat bodies and score points and get in the top eight (in the Big Ten),” Pendleton said.