With three first-place event finishes, the Michigan women’s track and field team showed that it means business every time they compete.

At the Penn State Northeast Challenge on Saturday, the Wolverines had an especially strong day in the field. The dominance began with redshirt junior Ashley Greer’s first-place finish, a personal record in the 20-pound weight throw, with a distance of 17.30 meters. Greer was backed by sisters Erin and Emily Pendleton, who finished second and third in the weight throw, respectively.

“I just feel like this year, as a senior, everything is coming together,” Greer said. “I’ve been waiting to hit 17 meters since last year at Big Ten’s. Today, I could feel I was going to have a good throw. When I hit 17.30, I was ecstatic.”

Redshirt sophomore Allison Liske said that during Greer’s performance, she saw a new level of confidence in the throwing circle.

“She did a really good job getting comfortable in the ring and getting comfortable with the atmosphere,” Liske said. “She really enjoyed herself today and I think that’s a big part of her doing well.”

With 13 other teams competing at the Challenge, the Michigan throwers made a name for themselves. Liske took first place in the shot put and her shot of 15.31 meters earned her a NCAA provisional mark, qualifying her for nationals. Liske said she expects more of her teammates to see their hard work pay off and result in hitting provisional marks in upcoming meets.

“I think that if we all are doing our best on the same day, its going to be pretty cool to see,” Liske said.

While the Wolverines were focused on their individual events at the Challenge, the team got a good look at this year’s host track for the Big Ten Indoor Championship.

“I think everyone worked really hard this week knowing that this was going to be the weekend to kind of get used to the track at Penn State and looking ahead to Big Ten’s,” Liske said.

With the Big Ten championship in the back of its minds, the Wolverines will have a chance to showcase their abilities when Michigan hosts the two-day Simmons-Harvey Invitational this upcoming weekend. With the competition coming from in-state schools, Michigan will have an opportunity to dominate and gain confidence. According to the Wolverines, the added bonus of track and facility familiarity doesn’t hurt either.

“We’re going to be comfortable and able to get ourselves riled up without having to deal with the variable of not knowing the track and not knowing the competition,” Liske said. “I think we’re all looking forward to staying home next weekend.”

While the Challenge was just their second meet of the season, the Wolverines believe they have the pieces in place to be competitive at every event.

“Our whole team spirit is really strong this year,” Greer said. “Even though we lost a few of our really great athletes, we have a great freshman class. Everyone is just stepping up and doing their best. You can even tell by the second meet that we have plenty of talent to do well and definitely contend for first place.”

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