Weekly #9: U-M to Split Squad Three Ways for Weekend Competition
MGOBLUE Jillian Smith
MGOBLUE
Jillian Smith
MGOBLUE

Feb. 28, 2012

Rebecca Addison & Jillian Smith (Facebook)

THIS WEEKEND
Fri-Sat., March 2-3
-- at Alex Wilson Invitational (South Bend, Ind.), 6 p.m./11 a.m.
Event Schedule
Fri-Sat., March 2-3 -- at North Florida Spring Invitational (Jacksonville, Fla.), 9 a.m.
Event Schedule
Saturday, March 3 -- at Virginia Tech Final Qualifier (Blacksburg, Va.), 10 a.m.
Event Schedule

The University of Michigan women's track and field team will head to two different last chance meets this weekend, while other members of the squad will head south to begin training for the outdoor season and compete in the North Florida Spring Invitational on Friday and Saturday (March 2-3). Competition in Jacksonville will begin at 9 a.m. on both days.

Those athletes still fighting to secure a spot at the NCAA Indoor Championships (March 9-10) will participate in the Virginia Tech Final Qualifier on Saturday (March 3) and Notre Dame Alex Wilson Invitational on Friday and Saturday (March 2-3). Field events at Virginia Tech will begin at 10 a.m., while action at Notre Dame will begin on Friday at 6 p.m. and again at 11 a.m. on Saturday.

WOLVERINE BITES
Qualifying Standards for NCAA Championships -- For the second straight year, provisional standards are no longer part of the qualifying process. Championship fields will first be filled with those who declare for their events with automatic status. Then, the remainder of the field will be filled by the highest-remaining ranked performances. [ Indoor Qualifying Standards ]

Athletes in Action this Weekend

Virginia Tech Final Qualifier

Kiley Tobel - Pole Vault
Tobel ranks 13th in the nation in the pole vault. Earlier this season, she set a new indoor school record and lifetime best with a vault of 4.23 meters (13-10.50) at the Silverston Invitational (Feb. 18). Last weekend at the Big Ten Championships, she finished fourth overall (4.08 meters, 13-4.50).

Notre Dame Alex Wilson Invitational

Rebecca Addison - 800-meter Run
Addison ranks 11th in the nation (2:05.24) in the 800-meter run. She won the 800-meter title at the Big Ten Championships last weekend with a time of 2:06.07. She was also a member of Michigan's ninth straight winning DMR team at the conference meet. Addison's personal-best time in the 800 is 2:03.79, which she clocked last season (Feb. 11, 2012), while the NCAA automatic-qualifying time is 2:04.50. At last year's NCAA Indoor Championships, Addison finished eighth in the 800-meter (2:07.68) and was a member of U-M's sixth-place DMR team, earning All-America honors in both events.

Jillian Smith - 800-meter Run
Smith currently ranks 24th in the country in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:06.61, which she ran at the Big Ten Championships last weekend to finished second. She was also a member of Michigan's ninth straight winning DMR team at the conference meet. Smith's personal-best time in the 800-meter is 2:04.20, which she clocked last season (Feb. 11, 2012), while the NCAA automatic-qualifying time is 2:04.50.  At last year's NCAA Indoor Championships, Smith finished runner-up in the 800-meter (2:04.78) and was a member of U-M's sixth-place DMR team, earning All-America honors in both events.

Brook Handler - 800-meter Run
Handler made her postseason debut at the Big Ten Championships last weekend, placing sixth in the 800-meter run with a personal-best time of 2:08.92. The NCAA automatic-qualifying time in the 800-meter is 2:04.50.

Shannon Osika - Mile Run
Osika ranks 14th in the nation (4:38.42) in the mile run. Her mile time is a lifetime best and was set at the Notre Dame Meyo Invitational earlier this season. The freshman placed fifth in her debut at the Big Ten Championships with a time of 4:46.97. The NCAA automatic-qualifying time in the mile is 4:37.00.

Ellen Junewick - 5,000-meter Run
Junewick made her postseason debut at the Big Ten Championships last weekend, placing 13th in the 3,000-meter run with a personal-best time of 9:41.97. Even though the NCAA Championships are out of reach for the freshman, she will use the Alex Wilson Invitational as a chance to improve against national caliber competition. Junewick recently finished fourth at the 2012 USA Cross Country Championships on Feb. 11 to earn a spot on Team USA and will now compete in the Junior 6K race at the 2012 North America, Central American, & Caribbean (NACAC) Cross Country Championships on March 17.

North Florida Spring Invitational Line Up
Tofunmi Akeredolu - 100m Hurdles, 200m, Long Jump
Erin Busbee - 100m Hurdles, 200m, High Jump
Charlotte Cahill - 100m, 200m, 4x400m Relay
Shelby Hines - 200m, 400m, 4x400m Relay
Brianna Jenkins - High Jump
Allison Liske - Shot Put, Discus
Chelsey Miller - 800m, 4x400m Relay
Taylor Moore-Willis - 100m Hurdles, 200m, Long Jump, Javelin
Chinyere Onimo - 800m, 4x400m Relay
Emily Pendleton - Shot Put, Discus
Erin Pendleton - Shot Put, Discus
Kari Prena - Shot Put, Discus
Amber Smith - 100m Hurdles, 400m Hurdles, 400m, 4x400m Relay
Ada Unachukwu - 200m, 400m. 4x400m Relay
Alexandria Williams - 400m Hurdles, 4x400m Relay
Brittani Williams - 400m, 4x400m Relay

National Notables -- Michigan has four student-athletes ranked in the top 25 in the nation in their respective events, along with its distance medley relay, which ranks ninth in the country. Junior Rebecca Addison (Spring Lake, Mich./Grand Haven) ranks 11th with a time of 2:05.24 in the 800-meter run, while junior Jillian Smith (Manahawkin, N.J./Southern Regional) owns the 24th spot (2:06.61). Freshman Shannon Osika (Waterford, Mich./Mott) ranks 14th in the nation in the mile (4:38.42). The distance medley relay squad is made up of Osika, Addison, Smith and senior Brittani Williams (Detroit, Mich./Jackson).In the field, junior/sophomore Kiley Tobel (Commerce Twp., Mich./Walled Lake Western) is 13th in the pole vault (4.23 meters, 13-10.50). [ NCAA Division I Indoor Rankings ]

Last Time on the Track -- The Wolverines finished seventh at the 2012 Big Ten Indoor Championships and secured two individual event titles. The distance medley relay, which was comprised of freshman Shannon Osika (Waterford, Mich./Mott) in the 1,200-meter, senior Brittani Williams (Detroit, Mich./Jackson) running the 400-meter dash, junior Jillian Smith (Manahawkin, N.J./Southern Regional) in the 800-meter run and junior Rebecca Addison (Spring Lake, Mich./Grand Haven) running the final mile, won the ninth straight Big Ten DMR title for U-M. Addison won a second title on day two, taking the 8000-meter crown to give her four career Big Ten titles. Smith followed on Addison's heals, finishing runner-up in the 800-meter. Junior Ada Unachukwu (Morganville, N.J./Marlboro) rounded out Michigan's top-three finishers, placing third in the triple jump. [ MGoBlue Recaps: Day One | Day Two ]

Personal Improvement -- At the Big Ten Indoor Championships, nine Michigan student-athletes recorded personal-best marks. With just two meets remaining in the 2012 indoor season, 42 Wolverines have set new PRs in at least one event, with 22 improving in two or more events.

Cross Country Success -- Freshmen Shannon Osika (Waterford, Mich./Mott) and Ellen Junewick (Grand Rapids, Mich. (Forest Hills Eastern) finished first and fourth, respectively at the 2012 USA Cross Country Championships on Saturday (Feb. 11) at Forest Park in Saint Louis, Mo. The pair earned a spot on Team USA and will now compete in the Junior 6K race at the 2012 North America, Central American, & Caribbean (NACAC) Cross Country Championships. The event will be held on March 17 in Port of Spain, Trinidad. [ Recap ]

Big Ten Championships to Air on BTN -- The Big Ten Indoor Track and Field Championships will air on BTN at 1:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 10.

GET SOCIAL
Michigan women's track and field is on Facebook. Connect with the program, alumni and fans by clicking the "Like" button at facebook.com/michiganwomenstrack. Also, be sure to follow the team on Twitter (@umichtrack) for up-to-the-minute news and information throughout the season and beyond.

A LOOK AHEAD
Fri-Sat., March 9-10 -- at NCAA Indoor Championships (Boise, Idaho), 10 a.m./10:30 a.m. MST

   

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