Hawkeyes Head To Razorback Invite, Jack Jennett Invite

Jan. 24, 2011

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The University of Iowa track and field teams will send competitors to the Razorback Invitational in Fayetteville, Arkansas and to the Jack Jennett Invite in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Hawkeyes competing at the Razorback Invitational will face student-athletes from Arkansas, Stanford, LSU, Florida State, Nebraska, Arizona, TCU, Texas, Oregon and Oklahoma State. Competition in Fayetteville will begin Friday morning and continue to Saturday afternoon at the Rundal Tyson Track Center.

Iowa athletes traveling to Cedar Falls will compete Saturday. The event is tentatively scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. with the weight throw and continue to the final event at 6:20 p.m.

Bethany Praska ran a season best 600-meters at the Jack Johnson Classic last weekend in Minneapolis. The senior from Longmont, CO, crossed the finish line in 1:29.60, nearly two seconds faster than her previous career high set at the Big Ten Championships last February.

Praska’s time was the fastest in the nation last weekend and third fastest time in Iowa history.

Justin Austin is quickly becoming a household name with Hawkeye track and field fans. The sophomore sprinter set a school record and two meet records at the Jack Johnson Classic last weekend.

Austin crossed the finish line in 6.72 seconds in the 60-meter dash. His efforts earned him a school record in the event, replacing Kurt Felix’s time of 6.73 set in 1999. Austin also took the crown in the 200-meters with a personal best time of 21.39.

Among the recognition earned with his performances this weekend, Austin now holds Jack Johnson Classic meet records in both events. The Milwaukee, Wisconsin native tied the fastest 60-meter time in the Big Ten conference and set the conference record with a converted 200-meter time (20.99).

Erin Jones and Ashley Liverpool are not wasting any time making an impact for the Hawkeyes. The freshmen duo each claimed top spots in their respective events at the Jack Johnson Classic.

Jones, a Highland, Texas native, competed in the 60-meters, finishing second with a personal best time of 7.55. The finish ranks among Iowa’s top-five all-time fastest in the event. Jones also made her 200-meters debut, finishing first in the race with a time of 24.72 seconds.

Liverpool comes to Iowa from Cincinnati, Ohio. The four-time high school state qualifier edged out Sam Cameron of Northern Iowa to earn the first place finish with a time of 56.30. Liverpool’s time ranks ninth on Iowa’s all-time top performers list.

Hawkeyes Jordan Mullen and Steven Willey competed a level above the bar at the Jack Johnson Classic. Both student-athletes set new school records; Mullen in the preliminary run of the 60-meter hurdles and Willey in the 600-meter run.

Mullen, a sophomore, earns the all-time top performance mark in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.75, pushing Dion Trowers’ previous school record time of 7.87 to second place. Trowers set the record in 1997. Mullen’s time, ranked fourth nationally, is also the new Jack Johnson Classic meet and UM Fieldhouse facility record.

Willey, a senior all-American, finished the 600-meter run in 1:17.94 to capture Iowa’s all-time fastest finish in the event. Willey edged teammate Erik Sowinski’s former fastest time of 1:18.05 set in 2009.

The men’s and women’s teams combined to set six new Jack Johnson Classic records. In addition to Austin, WIlley and Mullen, Patrick Richards posted a 47.80 in the 400-meters to capture the top spot in the event.

Iowa also claimed record-setting victories in the 1,600-meter relay. The men’s team crosses the finish line in 3:12.65 while the women’s team set the meet and facility record at 3:45.03.

The Black and Gold travels to Lincoln, NE, for the Husker Invite and to South Bend, IN, to compete in the Meyo Invite next weekend.

HEAD COACH Larry Wieczorek
Larry Wieczorek is in his 24th season as head men’s cross country coach and his 15th season as head men’s track and field coach at the University of Iowa. He served as an assistant track and field coach for 12 years before taking the helm in 1997.

Last season, Wieczorek guided 28 qualifiers, made up of 20 student-athletes competing in 13 individual events and two relays to the NCAA Outdoor Championships preliminary round.

HEAD COACH Layne Anderson
Layne Anderson is in his third year as head coach of the University of Iowa women’s cross country and track and field teams. He has served as the Hawkeyes’ head women’s cross country coach for the past seven seasons, and was the interim head women’s track and field coach in 2008. From 2003-07, he served as an assistant women’s track and field coach for the Hawkeyes.