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Feb. 8, 2013
GENEVA, Ohio: February 8, 2013 - Junior Brandon Bennett-Green (Philadelphia, Pa.) and sophomore Matt Gilmore (Philadelphia, Pa.) both posted season-best efforts in the 200 meters, leading the Nittany Lions' day-one effort at the SPIRE Division I Invitational, at the SPIRE Institute. Friday's action was also highlighted by a bevy of stellar performances in the 5,000-meters by the Penn State contingent at the Husky Classic at the University of Washington. Both events are slated to continue on Saturday morning.
Senior Brooklyne Ridder (Cincinnati, Ohio) got things started in Washington, running a PR 16:07.52 to place 12th in the elite "invitational" women's 5K in Seattle, moving to fourth on the Penn State's all-time performance list. Ridder's effort was also tops among Big Ten competitors in the field, as well as the fastest time in the conference this year. Her performance was an outstanding breakthrough in the event, as the senior shaved just over seven seconds off her all-time best 5K, and over 20 seconds off her career-low indoor clocking.
Classmate Natalie Bower (Pleasant Unity, Pa.) also enjoyed a career-best evening, clocking 16:17.81 to place fourth overall in the "open" section on the 5,000. Bower's effort, which was a PR by more than 20 seconds, is enough for the No. 5 slot on the all-time Penn State standings. Junior Emily Giannotti (Coudersport, Pa.) also made good on her Seattle appearance, placing second in her 5000 heat with a personal-best finishing time of 16:42.78.
Redshirt-sophomore Matt Fischer (Kennett Square, Pa.) was the top finisher on the men's side, scoring a PR 14:09.87 over 5000 meters - good for 12th overall in the men's "open" competition.
Bennett-Green sprinted to a heat victory in the 200 in Geneva, posting a season-best effort of 21.66 - which also stands as the second-best mark among Nittany Lions this year. Gilmore also turned in his 2013 best, winning his heat with a performance of 21.73. Bennett-Green and Gilmore finished second and third, respectively, in the overall 200 standings on the night.
Also earning a top five finish on the day was freshman Alex Shisler (State College, Pa.), who placed fifth overall in the 400-meters, going 49.15.
Action picks back up on Saturday morning, beginning at 10:00 a.m., at the SPIRE Division I Invitational. For more on Nittany Lion track and field, log on to www.GoPSUsports.com.