Jan. 29, 2014
• Joanna Fleming Spotlight
Saturday, Feb. 1 -- vs. Michigan State (GVSU's Kelly Family Sports Center), 6 p.m.
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For the second time in program history and second time in as many years, the 12th-ranked University of Michigan women's track and field team will go head to head in a scored dual meet with Michigan State this Saturday (Feb. 1) at 6 p.m. at Grand Valley State's Kelly Family Sports Center in Allendale, Mich.
Tickets can be purchased online through Grand Valley's website or by calling GVSU's ticket office at (616) 331-3200. Presale tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students and seniors (general admission), and a $12 VIP track level pass is also available. Tickets prices for the day of meet are as follows -- $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors (general admission) and $15 for the VIP track level pass. Fans are encouraged to purchase tickets early as a sellout is expected.
Schedule of Events
6 p.m. -- W WT; M SP; M and W PV; W HJ
6:15 p.m. -- M and W LJ
7:15 p.m. -- M HJ; M WT; W SP M and W TJ
6:30 p.m. -- M then W One Mile run
6:45 p.m. -- M then W 60m HH
6:55 p.m. -- M then W 400m (2 sections if need)
7:10 p.m. -- M then W 600m (2 sections if needed)
7:25 p.m. -- M then W 60m
7:35 p.m. -- M then W 800m
7:50 p.m. -- M then W 200m (2 sections if needed)
8 p.m. -- M then W 3000m
8:30 p.m. -- M then W 4 x 400m
• Saturday's meet will mark Michigan's second time competing at Grand Valley's Kelly Family Sports Center this season, as the Wolverines opened the season with the GVSU Bob Eubanks Open on Jan. 10. However, U-M's middle-distance and distance runners did not compete at that meet.
• Michigan defeated Michigan State last year, 89-73, in the first-ever dual meet between the two teams.
• U-M is ranked No. 12 in the first regular-season USTFCCCA DI National Coaches' Poll -- its highest ranking since 2009, when it finished the season ranked No. 6 and placed 11th at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
• Michigan is ranked No. 8 in Track and Field News' dual meet rankings, while Michigan State entered the rankings this week at No. 12. To be eligible for ranking, a team must compete in at least one scored meet between four or fewer teams during the indoor season.
• Michigan and Michigan State each have several athletes ranked in the top five of the Big Ten in their respective events:
Brook Handler -- 800m, 2:07.09# (3rd)
Erin Finn -- 3,000m, 9:11.10# (1st)
Cindy Ofili -- 60m hurdles, 8.27 (2nd)
Kiley Tobel -- pole vault, 4.25m (13-11.25) (1st)
Sara Kroll -- mile, 4:48.37 (5th)
Leah O'Connor -- 3,000m, 9:29.09 (4th)
Lindsay Clark -- 3,000m, 9:30.17 (5th)
Adeline Grier-Welch -- high jump, 1.74m (5-8.50) (3rd)
Ashley Stacey -- long jump, 6.08m (19-11.50) (2nd); triple jump, 12.35m (40-6.25) (5th)
Tori Franklin -- triple jump, 13.10m (42-11.75) (1st)
• In U-M's home opener, the Simmons-Harvey Invitational, fifth-year senior Kiley Tobel improved upon her own school record in the pole vault with a jump of 4.25 meters (13-11.25). Her mark currently ranks first in the Big Ten and tied for seventh in the nation.
• Sophomore Cindy Ofili has won four of the five events she has competed in so far this season. At the most-recent Simmons-Harvey Invitational (Jan. 18), she swept the 60-meter dash, 200-meter dash and 60-meter hurdles. Her 60-meter hurdle time from that meet of 8.27 ranks second in the Big Ten Conference. At the 2014 season opener at Grand Valley State, Ofili also won the 60-meter dash and 60-meter hurdles.
• Freshman Erin Finn, the 2013 Big Ten cross country champion, won the 3,000m run in her collegiate track and field debut at the Simmons-Harvey Invitational in a time of 9:11.10#. Her time ranks first in the Big Ten and second in the nation and is less than two seconds off the indoor school record.
• Junior Brook Handler's 800-meter time at the Simmons-Harvey Invitational of 2:07.09# was a new personal best for her and also ranks third in the Big Ten and tied for eighth in the nation.
# converted time
HENRY HITS 30-YEAR MILESTONE
• Head coach James Henry is in his 30th season at the helm of the program. During his time at U-M, Henry has led the Wolverines to 14 Big Ten titles, including seven indoor and seven outdoor. U-M's track and cross country programs also teamed up to win a pair of triple crowns in 1993-94 and 2002-03 (Big Ten cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field titles in the same academic year). Individually, he has helped produce 153 NCAA All-Americans, 182 All-Big Ten honorees, 181 individual Big Ten champions, nine national champions and four national championship relay teams.
THE 2014 WOLVERINES
• Team Captains: Senior/junior distance runner Taylor Pogue (Goodrich, Mich./Goodrich), senior hurdler Amber Smith (Cleveland, Ohio/Collinwood) and fifth-year senior pole vaulter Kiley Tobel (Commerce Twp., Mich./Walled Lake Western) will serve as team captains for the 2014 season. Smith and Tobel are each serving for the second straight year, while Pogue also represented the U-M cross country squad as a captain this past fall.
• Returning All-Americans: Michigan returned four indoor NCAA All-Americans, including three that earned the honors during the 2013 season. Senior Erin Busbee (Cleveland, Ohio/Collinwood)and sophomore Maya Long (Ann Arbor, Mich./Huron) each earned First Team All-America honors a year ago. Busbee finished sixth in the long jump, while Long ran the 400-meter leg of U-M's national champion distance medley relay team. Junior Shannon Osika (Waterford, Mich./Mott) earned Second Team All-America honors in the mile run for the second straight year, finishing 14th overall. Fifth-year senior Kiley Tobel (Commerce Twp., Mich./Walled Lake Western) earned All-America first team recognition in the pole vault during the 2012 season.
• In the Record Books: Senior Erin Busbee and fifth-year senior Kiley Tobel each hold indoor school records in their respective events. Busbee owns the indoor long jump record with a mark of 6.38 meters (20-11 1/4), which she recorded at a last chance meet to qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships. Busbee was ranked 71st in the nation heading into the last chance meet, when her record-setting jump propelled her into a tie for seventh and onto the national championships, where she finished sixth. Tobel increased her own indoor pole vault school record at the Simmons-Harvey Invitational on Jan. 18 (4.25 meters, 13-11 1/4) and also owns the outdoor pole vault record (4.25 meters, 13-11 1/4).
• Lifetime Teammates: Sophomores Cindy Ofili and Maya Long, as well as junior Chinyere Onimo were high school teammates at Huron High School in Ann Arbor. All three compete in sprinting events for the Wolverines.
• U-M Family Ties: Sophomore Cindy Ofili is the younger sister of former Wolverine, five-time NCAA champion, and 2012 Olympian, Tiffany (Ofili) Porter (2006-09), as well as Alex Ofili, who played football at U-M (2002, 04). Senior/junior Elly Mioduszewski is the younger sister of Melany Mioduszewski, who ran cross country and track for U-M in 2008 and 2009. Sophomore Hailey Middlebrook and freshman Darby Middlebrook are the only sisters on the roster this season. Senior Amber Smith, fifth-year senior Jillian Smith and freshman Jillian Smith have no relation.
2013 IN REVIEW
• Coach Henry's 2013 squad produced its best Big Ten team finishes since 2009, placing third at the indoor conference meet and fourth at the outdoor event. Fifth-year senior Amanda Eccleston captured the indoor mile and outdoor 1,500-meter run titles and also ran the anchor leg of Michigan's NCAA champion distance medley relay, which set a new school record (10:56.46). Rebecca Addison, Jillian Smith and freshman sprinter Maya Long joined Eccleston on the winning relay. The Big Ten DMR (Shannon Osika, Meg Bellino, Smith and Addison) captured the program's 10th-striaght conference crown. In addition to U-M's DMR winning the national title, junior multi-event athlete Erin Busbee finished sixth in the long jump at the NCAA Indoor Championships to propel the Wolverines to a tie for 15th place -- its best team result since 2009.
• Michigan lost several Big Ten point scorers from its 2013 team to graduation. The Wolverines graduated 36 of its 89 total points in individual events from the indoor conference meet, as well as three members of its winning distance medley relay and two members of the seventh-place 4x400-meter relay -- Amanda Eccleston (Mile, 1st; 3,000m, 2nd), Meg Bellino (DMR - 400m, 1st; 4x4 Relay, 7th), Rebecca Addison (800m, 5th; DMR - 800m, 1st), Ada Unachukwu (triple jump, 3rd), Tofunmi Akeredolu (long jump, 7th) and Charlotte Cahill (4x4 Relay, 7th). Jillian Smith (800m, 3rd; DMR - Mile, 1st) has no remaining indoor eligibility but will return for her final outdoor season in the spring.
• Qualifying Standards for NCAA Championships: There are no qualifying standards for the championships season. There will be a track indexing standard to delineate the different indexing among flat, undersized, banked and oversized. Qualification to the championships is based on descending-order list for the season. For each individual event contested, the top 16 declared student-athletes will be accepted into the competition. For each relay event contested, the top 12 declared relay teams will be accepted into the competition. Due to new NCAA legislation, last-chance meets will no longer be held the week prior to the national indoor meet. [ USTFCCCA Selection Criteria ]
• For the second straight year, the Big Ten Indoor Championships will be held at the SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio. Michigan finished third a year ago at the conference event -- its best finish since 2009. The NCAA Indoor Championships will be hosted by the University of New Mexico.
A LOOK AHEAD
Fri-Sat., Feb. 7-8 -- at Notre Dame Meyo Invitational (South Bend, Ind.), 4 p.m./10 a.m.
Fri-Sat., Feb. 14-15 -- at SPIRE Invitational (Geneva, Ohio), 2 p.m./10 a.m.