Alexander Is First-Team Big Ten Pick

March 1, 2006

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THIS WEEK — The Hawkeyes have one last chance to qualify for the 2006 NCAA Indoor Championships hosted by the University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville, AK. Iowa State University is hosting the Cyclone National Qualifier meet in Ames, beginning at 10:25 a.m. in the Lied Athletic Facility.

2006 BIG TEN MEN’S INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS — The University of Iowa hosted the annual conference meet and finished in seventh place with 49 points. Wisconsin won their sixth consecutive indoor title with 124.5 points.

Matty Gorman was the lone Big Ten champ for the Hawkeyes. The sophomore won the long jump with a collegiate best mark of 24-8.5. That mark is sixth-best in Iowa history and provisionally qualified him for the NCAA Indoor Championships.

Sophomore Shane Maier took home the bronze medal in the shot put with a toss of 58-10.75. Maier has already provisionally qualified for the championships. Junior weight thrower Adam Hamilton placed third in the event. His season-best toss of 64-7.75 also improved his provisional qualifying mark.

Sophomore Ryan Niver set a new school record in the heptathlon. Niver scored 4,984 points in the event surpassing the previous high mark of 4,930 that he set last season. Niver won the high jump in the multi-event competition with a jump of 6-8.75.

Final Team Standings:1.  Wisconsin   124.52.  Minnesota   943.  Illinois    934.  Michigan    765.  Indiana     726.       Ohio State     647.  Iowa        498.  Penn State  46.59.  Michigan State  4310.     Purdue      40

2006 BIG TEN WOMEN’S INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS — The women’s championships were hosted by Wisconsin this year. The Hawkeyes finished in seventh place with 58.5 points; Michigan won the team competition with 127.76 points.

Sophomore Kineke Alexander was the star Hawkeye of the conference meet. Alexander won gold in the 400 meters in an Iowa school record time of 52.31. That time also bettered the previous Big Ten mark by 1.47 seconds, was a Camp Randall facility record, and automatically qualified her for the NCAA Championships. Alexander went on to win the 200 meter dash in 23.69, which improves her NCAA provisional qualifying mark in that event and moves her up to the fourth spot on the top ten performance list.

Iowa’s two relay teams brought home silver medals in their respective races. Meghan Armstrong, Ashley Granger, Shannon Stanley and Krista Anderson ran to a time of 11:31.54 in the distance medley relay, which is the sixth fastest time in school history. In the 1,600-meter relay, Tiffany Johnson, Lindsey McCalla, Kineke Alexander and Granger finished with a time of 3:43.64.

Sophomore Tammilee Kerr finished the pentathlon in 12th place with 3,443 points. That point total is a collegiate high for Kerr and is fourth on the top ten performance list.

Tiffany Johnson set a new school record in the triple jump. Johnson, who already owned the record, jumped 40-10.25 to beat her previous mark of 39-7.75. She finished fourth in that event.

Final Team Standings:1.  Michigan    127.672.  Illinois    1143.  Minnesota            105.834.  Penn State  855.  Wisconsin         716.  Ohio State  617.  Iowa        57.58.  Purdue      499.  Indiana     1910.     Michigan State  16

BIG TEN HONORS — The Big Ten office announced the 2006 all-Big Ten indoor track and field teams, as well as individual award winners today. The Hawkeyes had two individuals named to the first team and six named to the second team.

Matty Gorman and Kineke Alexander were selected to the all-Big Ten first team. Gorman won the long jump to become the men’s first champion since Jeremy Allen won the shot put in 2000. Alexander was a double-gold medalist in the 200 and 400 meters. She set a new school record, a Big Ten record and a facility record with her winning time of 52.01 in the 400 meter dash.

Krista Anderson, Meghan Armstrong, Ashley Granger, and Shannon Stanley were second-team Big Ten picks for their second place finish in the distance medley relay. Granger, Tiffany Johnson, and Lindsey McCalla were also second-team selections after a silver medal performance in the 1,600-meter relay; Alexander was also on the team.

RECORDS FALLING — The Hawkeyes have rewritten the record books this season. Five individuals now hold the top marks in their events and one relay team also took over the first spot.

Kineke Alexander ran a 52.01 in the 400 meters to take over the previous top time of 52.65. Junior Tiffany Johnson broke the 60-meter hurdle record when she crossed the line in 8.33 and reset her own school record in the triple jump with a mark of 40-10.25. Becca Franklin threw the weight throw 53-0.25 to own the number-one spot. Lindsey McCalla, Ashley Granger, Alexander and Johnson ran 3:40.52 in the 1,600-meter relay to break the previous record by almost four seconds.

Sophomore Eric MacTaggart owns the best indoor 3,000 meter time after crossing the finish line in 8:08.79 at the Meyo Invitational.

NCAA QUALIFIERS — Several Hawkeyes have qualified for the 2006 NCAA Indoor Championships hosted by the University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville, AK. Kineke Alexander, Meghan Armstrong, Tiffany Johnson, and Peaches Roach have qualified in individual events. Lindsey McCalla, Ashley Granger, Alexander and Johnson have qualified in the 1,600-meter relay. Sophomores Shane Maier and Matty Gorman, plus junior Adam Hamilton have qualified in field events. Please see the complete release in PDF format to see events and rankings of these athletes.

TOP TEN INDOOR PERFORMERS — Several student-athletes have made it onto Top Ten indoor performance lists for the first time this season. Others have improved their standings. For a complete list of where this year’s athletes rank, please see the complete release in PDF format.

IOWA HEAD COACHING STAFF — Head Coach Larry Wieczorek is in his 10th season at the helm of the Iowa men’s track team. During his career at Iowa, Wieczorek has coached 23 all-Americans and 35 Big Ten Champions. Iowa’s highest Big Ten meet finishes during his tenure are second at the 1999 outdoor meet and fourth at the 1997 indoor meet. As a runner, Wieczorek was a six-time Big Ten champion for Iowa, winning four track and two cross country titles. He was also a four-time all-American. In 1998, Wieczorek was inducted into the Iowa Varsity Club Hall of Fame.

James Grant is in his 10th year at the helm of the women’s track program. The past three seasons have been outstanding for Grant and the Hawkeyes. Iowa placed third at the 2004 Big Ten Indoor Championships in Iowa City and sixth at the 2003 conference outdoor meet. Both were Iowa’s highest placings during Grant’s tenure. The third-place indoor finish tied the team’s highest conference finish in school history. In the last three seasons, the Hawkeyes crowned 11 Big Ten champions, 38 regional qualifiers, 15 all-region selections, 24 NCAA qualifiers and three all-Americans, while setting 17 school records.