Seniors Shine on Senior Day


Feb. 20, 2009

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IOWA CITY, IA —The University of Iowa Track and Field teams came out in force in Friday’s Iowa Invite, crowning 18 champions and earning 25 new collegiate bests.

Senior Mandy Chandler won the women’s weight throw with a collegiate best throw of 54-04 1/2 (16.57m) that ranks third in school history and also won the women’s shot put (42-09). Sophomore Amanda Hardesty (1st, 5:05.26) and junior Katie Ellis (2nd, 5:06.64) were the top finishers in the women’s mile and were two of four Hawkeyes to earn new season bests in the event. Senior Renee White claimed the top spot in the women’s 60-meter hurdles with a season best time of 8.60. Freshman Betsy Flood won the women’s 600-meters (1:36.22) leading a group of five Hawkeye runners that claimed the top five spots and earned new collegiate bests.

“I thought it was an excellent day’s work,” said Women’s Head Coach Layne Anderson. “I’m excited about the way this group is competing. It was a good meet to warm up for next week’s Big Ten Championships. If you have the talent and determination, all you need is a track and some competition and good things will happen.”

Junior Paul Chaney’s victory in the men’s 60-meter dash (1st, 6.80) is a new collegiate best for the multi-sport athlete and ranks third all-time in Iowa history. Senior Mark Schaapveld took the men’s weight throw with a season best toss of 53-1 3/4 (16.20m) while senior John Hickey won the shot put with a toss of 58-01 3/4 that ranks ninth in school history. Junior Alex Zona was the men’s pole vault champion posting a new collegiate best of 16-0 3/4 (4.90m) while fellow junior Frank Prill earned a new season best (3rd, 14-01.25). In the mile, Iowa claimed three of the top four spots thanks to seniors Eric MacTaggart (1st, 4:14.67), Tommy Tate (2nd, 4:19.12), and Jay Renaud (4th, 4:22.66) all posting collegiate bests on senior night. Standout Iowa freshman D’Juan Richardson took the 60-meter hurdles (8.46). Senior Ryan Kelly tied a season best (6-9 1/2) winning the men’s high jump. Sophomore James Paul won the men’s 800-meters (1:57.87) while freshman teammate Brian Marchese (3rd, 1:59.40) earned a new collegiate best.

“Today is just what we were looking for,” said Men’s Head Coach Larry Wieczorek. “We wanted a tune-up for the Big Ten Championships and there were a lot of good performances. Our senior group especially, guys like Alex Zona and John Hickey doing well on senior night was great.”

Former standout Hawkeye athletes Shellene Wililams and Peaches Roach were in competition today, with Roach winning the women’s long jump (19-00 1/2) and the women’s 60-meter dash (7.38) with Williams not far behind (7.65). Shellene Williams was a four-time Big Ten Champion and an all-American in the 400-meters. Peaches Roach was a four-time all-American and a five-time Big Ten Champion in the high jump.

The Hawkeyes will be in action next weekend at the Big Ten Indoor Championships. The men will head to Penn State, competing at the Ashenfelter multi-sport facility. Events are set to start at 9 a.m. Saturday and 9:20 a.m. Sunday. The women will be at Indiana competing at the Harry Gladstein Field House. Events are set to start at 9 a.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. Sunday.