Hawkeyes At Big Ten Meet

May 10, 2004

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THIS WEEK — The Hawkeye men’s and women’s track teams will compete at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships, May 14-16 in West Lafayette, IN. All events will be held at Rankin Track and Field on the Purdue University campus. All-session tickets are $15 for adults and $9 for seniors, students and youth. Single-session tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for seniors, students and youth. Tickets are available at www.purduesports.com or at the athletic ticket office at 800/497-7678.

2003 BIG TEN OUTDOOR REVIEW — The Iowa women’s team won three events en route to a sixth place finish at the 2003 Big Ten Outdoor Championships in Minneapolis, MN. It was the highest placing for a Hawkeye women’s track and field team since 1994, when the team tied for fourth. Iowa’s 70 points was the most scored by a Hawkeye women’s team since the 1992 conference outdoor meet when it scored 75. It was also only the second time in school history, and the first time at the conference outdoor meet, than an Iowa squad won three events at the same Big Ten meet. Their three titles ended a five-year absence from the winner’s stand as Iowa’s last Big Ten outdoor champion was Wynsome Cole in the 400-meter hurdles in 1998.

Winning events for the Hawkeyes and earning first team all-Big Ten honors were junior Shellene Williams in the 400 meters, junior Aisha James in the long jump and the 1,600-meter relay of senior Nicole Charles, sophomore Aisha Hume, senior Sarah Steffen and Williams. James became Iowa’s first Big Ten long jump champion with her winning leap of 21-4. The 1,600-meter relay also won Iowa’s first conference title in that event, shattering a 14-year-old school record with a winning time of 3:39.95. Williams became the third student-athlete in program history to win two Big Ten titles at the same meet with her first-place finish in the 400 meters (53.58). Former Hawkeyes Elaine Jones (1984) and Ellen Grant (1997) also accomplished that feat.

Sophomore Alana Redfern and junior Jessie Strand each earned second team all-Big Ten honors with their runner-up finishes in the javelin and pole vault, respectively. Redfern, who at one time led the nation in the javelin with her collegiate-best and school record-setting throw of 181-5, placed second with a throw of 166-1. Strand broke the school pole vault record of 12-6 that she’d set earlier that month with her second-place mark of 12-10.

The men’s team placed ninth with 27 points at the conference outdoor meet. Junior Bill Neumann led the Hawkeyes by winning his second straight Big Ten javelin title with a throw of 238-2. He is the fourth javelin thrower in school history to win two Big Ten titles in that event, and the first back-to-back Big Ten champion in the same event for the Hawkeyes since Arno van der Westhuizen won the hammer throw in 1999 and 2000.

HAWKEYES IN BIG TEN HISTORY — The Iowa men’s team has won two Big Ten outdoor team championships (1963 and 1967) and 105 event titles since the first meet was held in 1901. Three former Hawkeyes hold a spot in the conference record books. In 1997, Bashir Yamini tied the long jump record of 26-8 1/4 set in 1935 by Ohio State’s Jesse Owens, and in 2000 Arno van der Westhuizen set the conference hammer throw record of 218-5. Jon Reimer holds the retired 330-yard hurdles record of 36.1, set in 1965. The Hawkeye men’s team has had four student-athletes earn conference individual outdoor track honors. Current Iowa assistant coach Pat McGhee is the lone Hawkeye to earn two awards in the same season, being named Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Championships in 1989. Other outdoor honorees were Anthuan Maybank (1993 Athlete of the Year), Jeremy Allen (1998 Freshman of the Year) and Tim Dwight (1999 Athlete of the Championships).

The Iowa women’s squad has yet to win a Big Ten outdoor team title, but has crowned 25 event champions in 16 individual running events, four field events and two relays since the first meet was held in 1982. Former Hawkeye Erica Broomfield is the lone Iowa individual conference honoree, earning Big Ten Outdoor Freshman of the Year accolades in 1998.

LAST WEEK — The University of Iowa men’s and women’s track and field teams won a combined total of six events at the annual Iowa Musco Twilight VI Saturday. The Hawkeyes also set two meet records and one Francis X. Cretzmeyer track record at the meet. In all, five meet records and three track records fell on the day, while 50 student-athletes recorded regional qualifying marks.

Minnesota won both the men’s and women’s team titles, scoring 153.5 and 171.5 points, respectively. The Iowa men’s and women’s teams both placed third, scoring 106 and 115 points, respectively.

Senior Shellene Williams won the 200 meters, setting a meet record of 23.50. She also broke the 21-year-old school record of 23.59 set by Davera Taylor in 1984. Senior Sarah Arens also won the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a track and meet record of 10:38.53. The women’s 1,600-meter relay of junior Aishe Hume, freshmen Lindsey McCalla and Tiffany Johnson and Williams won their race in 3:45.02 in their first time out this season. Other Iowa winners were senior Michelle Lahann in the 1,500 meters (4:24.18), senior Brad Daufeldt in the hammer throw (207-10) and freshman Ben Barron in the B Section 1,500 meters (3:57.78). While they didn’t win the event, all of the Iowa men’s shot putters posted regional qualifying marks.

Unattached competitor and Iowa City native Joey Woody ran fastest time in the United States to date this year, setting a meet and track record in the 400-meter hurdles with his winning time of 48.94.

INTERNET INFORMATION — Press releases and event results for the Iowa men’s and women’s track and field teams are available at www.hawkeyesports.com throughout the season. Live updates from the Big Ten Outdoor Championships will also be available at www.bigten.org.

NEXT COMPETITION — The Hawkeyes will send athletes who meet the qualifying standards to the 2004 NCAA Midwest Regional, May 28-29 in College Station, TX. All events will be held at Anderson Track and Field Complex on the Texas A&M University campus. All-session tickets are $15 for adults and $11 for youth, and are available from the athletic ticket office at 888-992-4443 or 979/845-2311, or online at www.aggieathletics.com. Events start at noon each day.

The Midwest region will feature 39 schools from Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming. Competitors will advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships, to be held June 9-12 in Austin, TX, based on their performances at the regional meet.