Sunflower Greene’s achievements in the shot put keep blooming as the spring approaches.
At the Division II National Championships in Pittsburg, Kansas on March 10, Sunflower Greene won the national championship in the shot put with a PSAC-record throw of 53-4 ¼.
Her national title is the first individual title in Track and field at Millersville. She is also the first female athlete to win an individual national title since Susan Rorison, a swimmer in 1982.
“We always say you only need one good one,” Greene commented right after the tournament to Millersville Athletic Communications. “It came at the perfect time. We’ve worked all season on being patient and then getting the shot out fast. I was happy with that throw, and I would have been happy with that no matter how the (standings) ended up.”
Greene upset the favorite Michaela Dendinger of Wayne State College in Nebraska. Earlier in the season, Dendinger threw an NCAA-best 54-10 ¼. Her early lead was near the NCAA-best throw distance with a throw of 53-1 ½ with Greene’s throw going a length of 48-8 ¼.
Greene’s second attempt of 53-4 ¼ allowed her to clinch the national title. She had the first place seeding for the rest of the tournament. Gratefully, no one came close to her solid score, even though Greene stated that every competitor after she had a chance to unseat her.
“It was a feeling of relief,” said throwing coach Brittany Hartman in an interview with Athletic Communications. “We were thinking, ‘did this really just happen?’”
She also recorded a 49-7 ¼ throw in round three and 51-7 ¼ in round 5. She fouled during her round four attempt.
Dendinger cam close to Sunflower’s mark with a 52-10 ¼ in the final round.
Sunflower Greene also mentioned in the podcast interview that she wanted to leave a legacy at Millersville.
“It’s been a good year for me,” Greene stated in a March 6 podcast episode on the Snapper’s sports webpage. “It’s a really big deal for me.”
She wants to see future throwers strive to break her records and continue the winning tradition of Millersville throwing she established.
“I think it helps brings us a reputation, puts us on the map,” Hartman also mentioned. “I heard people saying [on March 10], ‘who is this Millersville school?’ I think this shows that we are a program to be (respected).
Greene was then nominated as PSAC Indoor Field Athlete of the Year. She is the first Marauder to win the award.