Hawkeyes Break Into Top 25

Feb. 16, 2011

Complete Release in PDF Format

The University of Iowa track and field team hosts the Iowa Invitational Friday night. The Hawkeyes welcome the Coe Kohawks, Drake Bulldogs, St. Ambrose Fighting Bees and Western Illinois Leathernecks to the UI Rec Building. The event is slated to begin with the field events at 5 p.m. Live results can be found on hawkeyesports.com.

The men’s track and field team broke into the national rankings this weekend. Iowa is currently 14th based on the NCAA national rankings released Tuesday. This is the highest ranking the men’s program has achieved since the 1998 team placed 11th at the NCAA Indoor Championships.

The Hawkeyes have broken eleven school records, including two that have been broken twice this season, and posted an additional 16 marks that rank inside the program’s all-time top 10 performances. This season’s school record holders include:

Event Name Mark
Weight Throw Majesty Tutson 58-4 (17.78m
60 meters Justin Austin 6.71
200 meters Justin Austin 20.83
Triple Jump Troy Doris 54′ (16.46)
600 meters Steven Willey 1:17.94
800 meters Erik Sowinski 1:47.98
3,000 meters Jeff Thode 8:00.38
1,600 meters relay Tiffany Hendricks 3:39.15
Nicole Erickson
Bethany Praska
Ashley Liverpool

Hawkeye student-athletes Justin Austin, Troy Doris and Erik Sowinski have automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships in College Station, TX, March 11-12. Austin ran a school record 20.83 at the Razorback Invitational to qualify in the 200 meters. Doris recorded a school record 54′ (16.46m) triple jump at the Razorback Invite to earn his automatic qualification. Sowinksi was the most recent Hawkeye to qualify after he ran a school-record setting time of 1:47.98 in the 800 meters at the Huskie Invite in Spokane, Washington last weekend.

Austin’s 200 meter time ranks sixth in nation. Doris ranks fourth nationally.

Four Hawkeyes topped the Iowa charts last weekend. Sophomores Majesty Tutson and Jeff Thode, junior Erik Sowinksi and senior Bethany Praska all inked their names on the top of Iowa’s all-time top performers lists.

Tutson, an Iowa City native, won the women’s weight throw competition at the Iowa State Classic in Ames last Friday night. The sophomore threw the weight 58′-4″(17.78m). The mark was 3/4 inch longer than Becca Franklin’s throw in 2007 that set the previous school record.

Thode made his collegiate debut in the 3,000 meters at the FloTrack Huskie Invite. The Schaumberg, Illinois native looked like a veteran, taking fifth in the event with a time of 8:00.38. Thode’s time edged out Micah VanDenend’s pervious record time of 8:00.81 set in 2006.

Sowinski rebroke his own record in the 800 meters. After running 1:48.75 at the Razorback Invite two weeks ago, the Waukesha, Wisconsin native ran just a bit faster at the Huskie Invite, crossing the finish line in 1:47.98.

Longmont, Colorado native Bethany Praska ran the fastest 800 meters in program history at the ISU Classic Saturday. Praska won the event with a time of 2:06.20, currently the 13th fastest time in the nation.

Senior Bethany Praska improved her national ranking after her school record run in the 800 at the ISU Classic last weekend. The Longmont, Colorado native crossed the finish line in 2:06.20 and moved up the ranks to No. 13 in the nation and No. 1 in program history.

Praska ran a 2:08.63 in the 800 meters at the Razorback Invitational Jan. 29 to initially break into the national spotlight. The time ranked No. 22 in the nation.

After narrowly missing the school’s 60 meter record in the season opener Jan. 8, sophomore Justin Austin has broken the record in each of his last two meets. The Milwaukee, WI, native broke the 12-year old 60m record (6.73) with a 6.72 finish at Minnesota’s Jack Johnson Classic (Jan. 21). One week later he topped his own record by one one-hundredth of a second, crossing the finish at the Razorback Invitational in 6.71. Austin’s time ranks No. 27 among all NCAA Division I athletes.

Junior Matt Banse recorded a toss of 63-11 ½ (19.49m) in the weight throw at the Iowa State Classic. Banse’s performance was a career best, ranks fifth on Iowa’s all-time top performers list and 40th among NCAA Division I athletes.

The Hawkeyes will part ways next weekend, as the women travel to Purdue University and the men head to the University of Illinois for the Indoor Big Ten Championships.