Three meets into the season and the theme of the Penn women's track team seems to be meteorology. For the second straight home meet -- the University of Pennsylvania Invitational -- the Quakers were affected by the weather. "It's hard to comment after a meet like this," said Penn assistant coach Tony Tenisci of Saturday's competition. "After a great week of training in great weather, we were ready to go. But it's hard to feel enthusiastic about competing in freezing temperatures and rain." Tenisci compared running in this week's meet to running on a highway with underwear and a T-shirt. "It's had to get motivated when you think of it like that, but the girls were really brave when they weren't feeling tough." The meet, completed in 40-degree weather with rain, was a blow to the Quakers, who expected better results after practicing in a beautiful climate during the week. Fourteen schools participated in the competition, including Penn State, La Salle, Temple and intra-conference rival Cornell. Despite the weather conditions, Penn junior Mandy Bennett had a personal record in the hammer throw at 38 feet. Bennett, however, did not place well in the discus or shot put. "You hope the weather won't affect you, but it will," Bennett said. For Bennett and the rest of the throwers, the rain was a bigger factor than the cold because the wet surface and slippery implements (hammer, shot put, discus) are harder to handle than the cold. Nevertheless, the fact that the throwers were competing in the cold for eight hours did not help their chances. Of the other sprinters, junior Vicki Moore placed second in the 400 meter and sophomore Richelle Clements placed third in the 100 meter race and fourth in the 200 meters. "It took a lot of focus for the whole team to perform," Moore said of the meet. "We did our best to ignore the weather and do the best we could." Junior Lisa El and sophomore Ruthie Neuhaus led the Penn jumpers with El winning the long jump and Neuhaus placing second in the triple jump. The Quakers hope to find truth in McGee's hypothesis Saturday in Princeton, when for once the forecasts aren't calling for cold rain.Comments powered by Disqus
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