Iowa Edges Out Illinois in Thrilling Season Opener

Jan. 9, 2010

CHAMPAIGN, IL – The University of Iowa men’s season opener came down to the final event in a thrilling start to the indoor track season. Trailing by one point, Iowa won the 1,600-meter relay, edging out Illinois with a final score of 80.5 to 79.5. All told, Iowa won seven events. Sophomore Ryan Lamparek won the weight throw with a career best toss of 59-5 3/4 (18.13m) and freshman Kevin Dibbern earned a career best winning the 400 meters (49.14).

Iowa’s winning relay team finished at 3:16.67, consisting of the formidable middle distance squad of senior Ray Varner, juniors Steven Willey and Chris Barton, and sophomore Erik Sowinski. Sowinski also helped Iowa win the 600 meters in his season debut, winning with a time of 1:19.38. Junior Jesse Luciano also made his 2010 indoor debut, winning the 3,000 meters (8:27.13). In addition to Lamparek’s collegiate best, first-place finish in the weight throw, sophomore Matt Banse finished second with a career best mark of (17.69). Lamparek took home his second title of the day in the shot put (55-9 1/4, 17.00m).

“I thought it was an exciting start to the season,” said Head Coach Larry Wieczorek. “Going into the final event, trailing by one point and coming out on top was great. I saw a lot of good performances today and I think this is a great way to start our season.”

Iowa returns home next weekend for the Iowa Invite, Jan. 16 at the UI Recreation Center, with events to begin at 11:00 a.m. Iowa’s men’s and women’s squads will compete against Central Methodist, Chicago State, Truman State, and Western Illinois.

Complete Results in PDF Format