Hawkeyes Continue Their Outdoor Season

April 13, 2009

THIS WEEK — The Hawkeye men’s track team will split competitors between the John McDonnell Invite at Fayetteville, AR, Friday and Saturday and the UNI Mark Messersmith Invite at Cedar Falls, IA, Saturday. The Iowa women’s team will compete at UNI’s Messersmith Invite Saturday.

McDonnell Invite events are set to start at Noon Friday (CT) and 10 a.m. Saturday at the University of Arkansas’ John McDonnell Field. Messersmith Invite events are set to start at 11 a.m. Saturday at the University of Northern Iowa’s Messersmith Outdoor Track and Field Complex.

LAST MEET — The Hawkeyes posted a combined 13 NCAA regional qualifiers and won nine events while competing at the Sun Angel Classic in Tempe, AZ, the Mesa Classic in Mesa, AZ, and the Lee Calhoun Invitational in Macomb, IL, last weekend.

At the Sun Angel Classic, senior Renee White won the triple jump with a regional qualifying 41-3 in her outdoor season debut. Sophomore Stephen Willey was Iowa’s other event winner, placing first in the men’s 400 meters (47.70). Willey and senior Ray Varner, sophomore Chris Barton and freshman Patrick Richards ran on the 1,600-meter relay that placed second with a regional mark of 3:09.55. Varner, who was fresh off his Big Ten Athlete of the Week honor, placed third in the premiere heat of the 400-meter hurdles with a regional mark of 51.53.

Also posting regional marks at the Sun Angel Classic were senior throwers A.J. Curtis (59-5 3/4) and John Hickey (59-0) in the shot put, sophomore Karessa Farley in the 100-meter hurdles (13.78)and freshman middle distance runners Betsy Flood (4:27.33)and McKenzie Melander (4:27.34) in the 1,500 meters. Farley’s mark ranks fifth on Iowa’s all-time best performers list, while Flood and Melander’s times rank eighth and ninth, respectively.

At the Mesa Classic, redshirt freshman Ryan Lamparek and Curtis posted regional qualifying marks in the discus, placing eighth (175-4) and ninth (172-8), respectively. Freshman D’Juan Richardson placed third in the 100 meters with a collegiate-best 10.90, while sophomore Zeke Sayon placed fourth in 10.97.

Iowa won seven events at the 20th annual Lee Calhoun Memorial. While the Hawkeyes did not have a full squad competing, the Iowa men placed second with 165.5 points in the team standings, while the Hawkeye women finished fifth with 68.50. Eastern Illinois won both the men’s (175) and women’s (200.50) team races.

Winning events for Iowa were seniors Rachel Hawks (1,500 meters – 4:42.08), Tommy Tate (3,000 meters – 8:38.27), Andy Napier (3,000-meter steeplchase – 9:15.06) and Mark Schaapveld (hammer throw – 179-9), sophomore Graham Valdes (high jump – 6-8 3/4) and freshmen Zack Braff (800 meters – 1:54.26) and Matt Banse (shot put – 54-2).8:38.27)

VARNER NAMED BIG TEN ATHLETE OF THE WEEK — Junior Ray Varner was named the Big Ten’s Men’s Co-Track Athlete of the Week April 8, sharing honors with Purdue’s Josh Hembrough. It was Varner’s first career weekly honor, and Iowa’s first track athlete honored since senior Andy Napier in 2008.

Varner earned accolades for his two regional qualifying performances at Auburn’s Tiger Track Classic April 3-4. The Wadsworth, IL, native posted a third place finish in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 51.82. Later in the meet, he anchored Iowa’s 1,600-meter relay team, helping them to a fifth-place finish of 3:09.70. The other members of the regional-qualifying relay team were sophomore Steven Willey, freshman Patrick Richards and sophomore Chris Barton.

MEN’S TEAM ANNOUNCES 2009 RECRUITING CLASS — The Hawkeye men’s track team has signed four student-athletes to national letters of intent for the 2010 season. Head Coach Larry Wieczorek is excited about the immediate impact that hurdler Ethan Holmes (Clinton, IA), distance runner Jeff Thode (Hoffman Estates, IL) and throwers Ben Stancombe (Bloomington, IN) and Matt Byers (Wichita, KS) will have on the Hawkeyes next season.

Holmes is the defending Class 4A state 400-meter hurdles champion (53.03), also winning that event at the 2008 Drake Relays. Stancombe is one of the top five returning hammer throwers (202-0) and one of the top nine weight throwers (67-10) in the nation. Competing for South High School, he is also the top returning shot putter (58-0) in the state of Indiana. Byers is one of the top three returning javelin throwers in the nation, recording a personal-best 219-8. He placed second at the Class 6A Kansas state championships, the USTAF Junior Championships and the USATF Junior Olympics last season. Thode is the fourth Illinois state cross country champion to join the Hawkeyes in recent years. He won the large school class at the 2008 state meet in November with a time of 14:18 on the three-mile course. He is also one of the top six returning milers in the nation, posting a 4:10.80 last spring.

WOMEN’S TEAM ANNOUNCES 2009 RECRUITING CLASS — The Hawkeye women’s track has signed eight student-athletes to national letters of intent for the 2010 season. Head Coach Layne Anderson is excited about the immediate impact that multi-event competitor Missy Miller (Tipton, IA), high jumpers Megan Glisar (Sergeant Bluff, IA) and Eva Greenwalt (Fitchberg, WI), distance runners Megan Ranegar (Valparaiso, IN) and Sarah Boyd (Dunrobin, Ontario), thrower Ashlyn Gulvas (Pinconning, MI), sprinter and jumpr Emily Moore (Gillette, WY) and sprinter Raven Moore (Riverdale, GA) will have on the Hawkeyes next season.

Boyd placed third at the 2007 OFSAA Cross Country Championships (17:56), and has lifetime best performances of 2:14 (800 meters) and 4:39 (1500 meters indoor). Glisar is a three-time Class 3A high jump state champion who placed third at the 2007 Nike Outdoor National Championships (5-8 3/4) and won the 2007 USA Youth Outdoor high jump title. Greenwalt qualified for the 2008 state meet in four events, placing third in the high jump. Her lifetime best clearance in that event is 5-8. A 2008 state champion in both the shot put and discus, Gulvas has posted lifetime best performances of 45-3 in the shot and 140-6 in the discus.

Miller is a four-time Class 2A state champion in track, having qualified in the maximum 12 events for three state championships, and a four-time state qualifier in cross country. She is a 10-time Drake Relays qualifier, and was part of two state championship cross country and track teams. Emily Moore is an 11-time Class 4A state champion in the jumps and sprints. Wyoming’s 2008 Track and Field Gatorade Player of the Year, she holds state records in the long lump (19-2 1/2), triple jump (39-7 1/2) and as a part of the 400-meter relay (48.30). She is a two-time triple jump all-American at the Nike Outdoor National meet, placing fourth in 2007 and second in 2008. Raven Moore was a Class 1A state champion in both the 100 (11.80) and 200 meters (24.50). Ranegar was the 2007 State Cross Country Runner-up and placed 20th at the Footlocker Midwest Regional in a time of 18:24.

IOWA TRACK TO HOST CLINICS & CAMPS — The Hawkeye coaching staff is scheduled to a four-day summer camp June 21-25. For more information contact Assistant Coach Scott Cappos at (319) 335-9392 or scott-cappos@uiowa.edu, or visit www.hawkeyetrack.com.

NEXT UP — The Hawkeye men and women will compete at the 100th running of the Drake Relays, April 23-25, in Des Moines, IA. Events will be held on Jim Duncan Track in Drake Stadium (18,000). Tickets are available at (515) 271-3647 or at www.drakebulldogs.com.

The Saturday, April 25, session of the Drake Relays will be shown taped delayed on ESPN2. The air time will be 1 p.m. (CT) the following day.