Hawkeyes Head To Big Ten Championships

May 9, 2005

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THIS WEEK — The Iowa men and women’s track teams will compete at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships, May 13-15, in Columbus, OH. All events will be held at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. Tickets are available from the Ohio State University Athletic Ticket Office at 800/462-8259 or www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com. All-session tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. Single-session tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students.

ROACH ATTEMPTS TO JOIN HAWKEYE ELITE — This weekend sophomore Peaches Roach will try to become the third female student-athlete in school history to win four Big Ten titles during her career. She won high jump titles at the 2004 indoor and outdoor Big Ten meets and at the 2005 indoor meet. Roach has several opportunities to win her fourth title. The Kingston, Jamaica, native is part of the 400-meter relay that currently leads the conference and is ranked second in the high jump and 100 meters. Roach could also make her mark in the Iowa record books as no female track student-athlete has ever totaled more than four conference titles or won more than three in one event.

The other two Hawkeyes to earn four Big Ten titles are Vivien McKenzie and Shellene Williams. McKenzie won three titles in the 100 meters and one in the 55 meters from 1983-85. Williams won three titles in the 400 meters and one as part of the 1,600-meter relay from 2003-04.

NEUMANN PLANS RETURN — Senior Bill Neumann looks to add another Big Ten javelin title to his collection this weekend. The Comox, British Columbia, native redshirted the entire 2004 season to heal an elbow injury. Neumann won the javelin (193-8) at the Iowa Musco Twilight VII at the end of April in his 2005 debut and only competition to date. The two-time Big Ten javelin champion and two-time all-American currently holds the conference javelin record of 238-2. If he wins a third conference javelin title, he would be the only Hawkeye in school history to do so. The three other Iowa Big Ten champion javelin throwers have each won two titles. They are L.D. Weldon (1930-31), Mark Panther (1934-35) and Bushnell Lamb (1936-38).

BREAKIN’ RECORDS — Iowa has set three new school records during the outdoor season. Sophomore Tiffany Johnson broke the triple jump record of 40-7 1/2 set in 1988 by Becki Borg with her leap of 40-9 1/2 at the Mt. SAC Relays. Sophomore Becca Franklin shattered the hammer throw record of 161-10 set in 1999 by Kerri Blackstone with the 181-11 she threw at the Iowa Musco Twilight VII. The 6,400-meter relay of sophomores Nikki Chapple and Jordan Laney, and seniors Katie Donlon and Michelle Sokol also set a school record (20:39.12) at Drake Relays. The previous record was 20:40.89 set in 2001 by Sarah Arens, Atalie Barber, Katie Butler and Ericka Roberts.

2004 BIG TEN OUTDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS REVIEW — The Hawkeye men and women’s track teams placed 10th at the Big Ten Championships in West Lafayette, IN. The men’s team scored 31 points, while the women scored 42.

The Hawkeye women crowned two event champions as senior Shellene Williams won the 400 meters (52.97) and freshman Peaches Roach won the high jump (5-11 1/4). Williams, who set a Rankin Track record with the win, became the second female student-athlete in school history to win four conference titles, as she won the 400 meters at the 2004 indoor and 2003 outdoor conference meets and ran on the champion 1,600-meter relay at the 2003 outdoor meet. Roach was named Big Ten Outdoor Freshman of the Year. Iowa’s other top-three finishers were senior Brad Daufeldt (Hammer Throw – 2nd), junior Tiff Pedersen (Hepathlon – 3rd), senior Eric Rothwell (Discus – 3rd) and senior Russell Peterson (400-meter hurdles – 3rd).

HAWKEYES IN BIG TEN HISTORY — The Iowa men’s team has won two Big Ten outdoor team championships (1963, 1967) and 105 event titles since the first meet was held in 1901. Two 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. 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 Male 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 27 event champions in 17 individual running events, five field events and two relays since the first meet was held in 1982. The two Hawkeyes have earned Big Ten Outdoor Freshman of the Year honors are Erica Broomfield (1998) and Peaches Roach (2004).

LAST WEEK — The Hawkeyes competed at the 96th annual Drake Relays in Des Moines. Senior Ken Kemeny was unable to defend his shot put title, placing second with a throw of 59-0 3/4 in that event. The Hawkeyes also snagged four third-place finishes at the meet. Senior Chris Voller placed third in the hammer with a collegiate-best 203-1, sophomore Peaches Roach placed third in the special invitation high jump (5-9 3/4), junior Tim Brodersen placed third in the discus (177-0) and the women’s 1,600-meter relay of senior Aisha Hume, sophomores Lindsey McCalla and Erin Sheeley and freshman Kineke Alexander placed third in 3:44.24.

MEN’S TEAM CAPTAINS CHOSEN — Seniors Ken Kemeny, Juan Coleman and Bill Neumann are tri-captains for the 2005 season. Kemeny is a five-time NCAA qualifier in the shot put, the 2004 Drake Relays champion in that event and has led the team in the shot put each of the last three years. Coleman is a four-time NCAA qualifier in the 1,600-meter relay, and ran the lead leg on the 2001 Big Ten Outdoor Champion 400-meter relay. Neumann is a two-time all-American and Big Ten Champion in the javelin. He won that event in five of six meets in 2003, and is the school record holder.

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

NEXT COMPETITION — The Hawkeyes will send athletes who meet the qualifying standards to the 2004 NCAA Midwest Regional, May 27-28 in Norman, OK. All events will be held at John Jacobs Track on the University of Oklahoma campus. All-session tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for youth. Single day tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for youth. Tickets can be ordered from the University of Oklahoma Athletic ticket office at 800/456-4668 or www.soonersports.com. Events will start each day at noon.

The Midwest region will feature 39 schools from Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming. The top five finishers in each individual event and the top three relays from each of the four regionals will automatically advance to the NCAA Championships, to be held June 8-11 in Sacramento, CA. The other three regions are the West (40 men’s teams, 42 women’s teams), the Mideast (78 men’s teams, 81 women’s teams) and the East (110 men’s teams, 112 women’s teams).