Hawkeyes Set To Hit The Road For First Time

Sept. 29, 2010

Complete Release

The University of Iowa men’s and women’s cross country teams both hit the road this weekend. It will mark the third event of the year for both squads and the first away from the Ashton Cross Country Course in Iowa City. The Hawkeye women will compete at the Notre Dame Invitational Friday and the Iowa men will compete at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational Saturday.

The Hawkeye women’s team travels to South Bend, IN, Friday to compete at the Notre Dame Invitational. The women’s 5K is scheduled to begin at 3:15 p.m. central time at the Burke Memorial Golf Course. Iowa will compete against a number of top teams, including No. 1 Villanova, No. 2 Florida State, No. 3 Washington, No. 5 Oregon, No. 8 Princeton and No. 12 New Mexico.

The Iowa men’s squad travels to Madison, WI, Saturday to compete at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational. The University of Wisconsin is the host school. The race will take place at Wisconsin’s home course, the Zimmer Championship Course. The men’s 8K is scheduled to begin at 11:45 a.m.

Both the men’s and women’s cross country teams are ranked in the USTFCCCA Regional rankings. The Hawkeye men’s team is ranked fifth in the Midwest Region and the women’s team is ranked second. Nationally, the women’s team is ranked 24th overall.

Head Coach Larry Wieczorek has named Dr. Georgina Dodge, the University’s Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Vice President, an honorary team member for the 2010-11 track and field season. Dr. Dodge served as assistant vice provost of Ohio State University’s Office of Minority Affairs for five years before joining the University of Iowa in July, 2010. She earned her B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of California, Irvine, and her Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Los Angeles. “When Dr. Dodge arrived on campus I read in the paper that she was excited to be here and anxious to cover her white office walls, so I sent her a welcoming gift that included a track and field poster and a media guide,” said Wieczorek. “We have one of the largest and most diverse teams on campus, so I thought it would be appropriate for us to welcome her to the University of Iowa. Since then, she has accepted our offer to become an honorary team member. I used to be excited about the upcoming season, but now I like our chances better than ever.”

The University of Iowa cross country teams both finished first at the Iowa Invitational at the Ashton Cross Country Course in Iowa City, battling Northern Iowa and Wichita State. The Iowa women’s team recorded a score of 22, downing Wichita State (35) and Northern Iowa (83). The Hawkeye men’s team tallied a total score of 19, defeating Northern Iowa (55) and Wichita State (65). The top three finishers in the men’s 8K were all Hawkeyes. Sophomore Jeff Thode won the event with a time of 25:05. Hawkeye team captain Mark Battista finished second. The senior turned in a time of 25:15. Sam Bailin saw his first action of the year. The junior finished third with a time of 25:39. James Paul finished fifth overall. The junior recorded a time of 25:59. Three Hawkeye freshmen saw action Saturday as well. Jon Michael Brandt, competing in his first collegiate event, finished eighth overall with a time of 26:22. Right behind Brandt was fellow freshman Nick Young. Young finished ninth, turning in a time of 26:28. Andrew Smith recorded a time of 26:44, finishing 11th overall. In addition, Cameron Rieger finished 14th after posting a time of 27:14.

Tonya Nero of Wichita State won the women’s 3K, posting a time of 10:15. The next four finishers were all Hawkeyes. Brooke Eilers finished second, a split-second behind Nero. The junior ran a career-best time of 10:15. The time is the third best 3K time in Hawkeye women’s history. Fellow junior Betsy Flood finished third, posting a career-best time of 10:18. That time is the fourth best in Hawkeye history. Lauren Hardesty, winner of the Hawkeye Invite two weeks ago, finished third, turning in a time of 10:22. Junior McKenzie Melander finished fifth (10:26), while senior Amanda Hardesty finished eighth (10:40).

The University of Iowa cross country squad will return to action Oct. 16. Both teams will travel to Terre Haute, IN, the site of the 2010 NCAA Championships, to compete at the Pre-Nationals Meet.