Hawkeyes Compete At Midwest Regionals

Nov. 6, 2006

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THIS WEEK — The men and women’s cross country teams will travel to Minneapolis, MN, to compete in the Midwest regional meet Saturday. The women will race in the 6,000-meter run at 11 a.m., while the men will race in the 10,000-meter run at 12:15 p.m. This meet is a qualifing meet for the NCAA Championships on November 19th in Terre Haute, IN.

MEN’S LAST TIME OUT — The men’s cross country team competed in the Big Ten Championships in Bloomington, IN. They were led to a fifth place finish by senior Micah VanDenend (3rd, 24:20). Junior Eric MacTaggart (10th, 24:44), senior Jeff Kent (33rd, 25:29), sophomore Blake Schlotzhauer (40th, 25:40), sophomore Andy Napier (58th, 26:07) and redshirt freshman Tommy Tate (75th, 27:02) also ran for the Hawkeyes. Both Vandenend and MacTaggart received Big Ten honors for the Hawkeyes.

HAWKEYES IN THE RANKINGS — Latest rankings by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches’ Association were released October 31st. The women’s team is ranked 23rd in the national rankings and third in the region. The men’s cross country team is ranked 28th in the national rankings and fourth in the regional rankings. For complete results visit www.ustfccca.com.

THE MEET —The top two teams of each region will automatically advance to the NCAA Championships. An additional 13 teams will be selected at-large by Division I track and field subcommittees on Sunday, November 12th. Individually, the first four individuals not on a qualifing team from each region will advance to the finals. Two additional individuals placing in the top 25, and not on already qualifing teams, will be selected at-large to compete in the finals. The Iowa women’s team enters the regional meet ranked third. They will battle for the top two spots against Big Ten schools Minnesota and Illinois. Iowa men’s cross country will head into regionals ranked fourth. They look to fight off Oklahoma State and Minnesota for a spot in the top two and a trip to the NCAA Championships.

HAWKEYE MEN’S COACH Larry Wieczorek — Larry Wieczorek is in his 20th season as Iowa men’s cross country coach. During his tenure, the cross country team has placed sixth or higher nine times at the NCAA Regional Championships, has posted 27 all-region selections and qualified for the NCAA Championships four times. In 2002, Wieczorek was named Midwest Region Coach of the Year honors by the United States Cross Country Association after the Hawkeyes won the NCAA Regional for the first time in school history. In 2004, the Hawkeyes recorded their highest placings under Wieczorek at the Big Ten (3rd) and NCAA Championships (13th). Wieczorek was a two-time Big Ten champion and a menber of Iowa’s last Big Ten track championship team in 1967. Wieczorek still owns the Iowa record in the indoor two miles.

QUOTING COACH WIECZOREK — “We have had a great week of practice and the guys are running well. There are six or seven teams that have the potential to qualify for nationls and I feel like we are one of those teams.”