Montana put together its best day of the outdoor season on Saturday, hosting five local schools in the Montana Open at Dornblaser Field.
The Grizzlies had plenty of success across the board, winning 15 total events.
"We saw good things everywhere today," head coach Brian Schweyen said. "You saw a lot of marks jump up, and they will continue to do so. We know we have talent here. We just have to keep getting better, like we did today."
Following is a look at Montana’s 15 event wins:
- Women’s 400 meters – Despite the 800 meters being her specialty, sophomore Carly Smiedala has been dominant in the 400 meters so far this spring, winning the event both times she has competed. On Saturday, she posted a 56.58 to win the race by 3.5 seconds.
- Men’s 400 meters – Freshman Trevor Henry ran a career-best 50.22 to win the 22-runner event.
- Women’s 800 meters – Senior Emily Cheroske won her second consecutive 800-meters race with a season-best time of 2:12.40. She led from start to finish, winning by more than 4 seconds.
- Men’s 800 meters – After a third-place finish last week in Spokane, junior Karsten Pease won the 800 meters on Saturday (1:54.74).
- Men’s 400-meter hurdles – Sophomore Chase Armstrong ran a personal-best 54.91 to win the 400-meter hurdles. He also placed second in the 110-meter hurdles and was the anchor of the winning 1,600-meter relay team.
- Women’s 1,600-meter relay – A team of Smiedala, Mijah McLeod, Madeline Hamilton and Cheroske won with a time of 3:51.61.
- Men’s 1,600-meter relay – Made up of Colton Hess, Jacob Lamb, Josh Riley and Armstrong, Montana held off a final push from Carroll’s A team to win by one-thousandth of a second (3:19.57).
- Women’s shot put – Sophomore Mariah Harvey posted a lifetime best in the shot put, recording a 42-11.75 to win the event for the first time this season.
- Men’s shot put – Freshman Brent Yeakey won the event by more than 3 feet, throwing a distance of 51-11.75.
- Women’s discus throw – Sophomore Holly Houston has won the discus in all three meets this season, but Saturday was special. Her mark of 154-0 was an improvement of nearly 22 feet from last week’s meet in Spokane.
- Men’s discus throw – In addition to his win in the shot put, Yeakey also won the discus (154-5) by 14 feet. It marked the first two wins of his outdoor career, after finishing second three times in the past two weeks.
- Women’s javelin throw – Like Houston, Zena Smith is now 3-for-3 on the season, winning the javelin in all three meets. Her mark on Saturday (149-7) was a career best and is right in line with where the regional-qualification cutoff generally is.
- Men’s javelin throw – Jensen Lillquist continues to find his form after redshirting a year ago. The junior won his second event of the season with a season-best 214-7.
- Women’s triple jump – Madison Neufeld led a trio of Grizzlies in the triple jump with a top mark of 37-5.75, a season best.
- Women’s high jump – Freshman Abby Dodge posted marks of 5-1 in Montana’s two previous meets of the outdoor season before making the jump on Saturday to 5-5.75. The major improvement was not only good enough to win the event but was Montana’s top mark of the season.
In addition to several Montana athletes who won events while competing unattached, due to redshirt, the Grizzlies also had the top attached performers in the women’s 5,000 meters (Madison Carr; 19:32.07) and women’s hammer throw (Harvey; 164-11).
The Grizzlies will have a busy upcoming week, sending athletes to meets in Azusa, California, Walnut, California, and Helena.
“We just need more days like this, where we can get outside and train hard,” Schweyen said. “It’s hard to believe, but the season’s coming to an end soon, so we need to get rolling, and I think today was the beginning of doing that.”