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Strong results abounded in Penn track and field’s first meet of the outdoor season.

“We had a lot of good performances,” coach Steve Dolan said. “It’s always tough in early season meets because we haven’t competed in a while, so these meets are rust busters for us.”

Competing at Franklin Field in the 2013 Philadelphia College Classic against fellow Big 5 and other local schools, the Quakers raced to several wins they hope foreshadow a strong outdoor season.

“Having this meet under our belt, I think we’ll be ready for some very good competition in the coming weeks,” Dolan said.

On the men’s side, the Quakers posted wins in the 4×100 meter relay and 1500-meter run, first and second in the high jump, discus throw, 100, 200, 400 and 800-meter races, and earned all three top spots in the 110-meter hurdles and shot put.

The most impressive feat belonged to freshman Sam Mattis, who on his first ever collegiate attempt broke Penn’s 19-year-old discus throw record.

Dolan was also especially proud of the performance of his women’s field squad, including junior Morgan Wheeler, who moved up to third place in Penn history in the javelin throw with a career-best throw of 45.72 meters.

Meanwhile, freshman Theresa Picciallo had the fourth-best shot put toss in Penn history, and senior Davielle Brown won the pole vault.

Overall on the women’s side, the Quakers finished first in the shot put and javelin throw, first and second in the 400-meter dash, 800-meter run and took all podium spots in the 100-meter hurdles, shot put, pole vault and triple jump.

According to sophomore distance runner Ariana Tabatabaie, who finished second in the 800, the numerous wins were a good confidence booster for the Quakers in the unscored meet.

“It was a good meet,” Tabatabaie said. “It was the home opener and it’s always good to see where you’re at transitioning from indoor to outdoor.

“It was also a good platform to set the tone for the rest of the season. I think we’re pretty happy with a few standout performances — everyone is improving from indoors.”

Dolan, while pleased, understands there’s still work to be done.

“Our big process is looking at consistent improvement,” he said. “Next week should be fun — we’re going to take a good contingent down south and hopefully the weather and competition will be even better.”

Outdoor season continues next week as the Quakers split time between the Danny Curran Invitational and N.C. State’s Raleigh Relays.


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