Feb. 26, 2011
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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The University of Iowa women’s track and field team competed during the first day of the 2011 Big Ten Championships at Lambert Fieldhouse on the campus of Purdue University.
Senior Betsy Flood ran the 3,000 meters Saturday afternoon. Flood ran to a second place finish in one of the few events to hold the final competition on the first day. The Des Moines, Iowa, native ran a collegiate best time of 9:23.09.
Freshman Erin Jones made her conference championships debut Saturday, placing sixth in the preliminary 200 meter race and earning herself a place in the finals of the event with her time of 24.53.
Ashley Liverpool, another Iowa freshman making the trip to a Big Ten Championships for the first time, ran 55.73 in the 400 meters. Liverpool placed third in the prelims race and will compete in tomorrow’s final of the event. Senior Tiffany Hendricks will also be running in the finals race as she ran a qualifying time of 56.07.
Senior Lauren Hardesty and junior McKenzie Melander both qualified for final mile run tomorrow. Hardesty ran the race in 4:44.70, placing second while Melander finished eighth with her time of 4:44.92.
Iowa women ran the distance medley in 11:26.34, beating the previous Lambert Fieldhouse record in the event. Melander set the pace for the team, running the first leg before handing off to Hendricks. Hardesty ran the third leg and Brooke Eilers took the baton across the finish line. The team finished third.
Senior Bethany Praska ran the 600 meters in 1:32.28, placing fourth in the preliminary race, securing a place in the finals.
Hawkeyes in the field events included Kirsten Weismantle. The sophomore recorded a personal record mark at 11-5 ¾ (3.50 m).
“We had a solid first day with Betsy Flood and the distance medley relay setting the standard with a second and third place finish,” head coach Layne Anderson said. “Tomorrow we will look to crown a Big Ten champion in several events as we continue to move our team forward in the Big Ten Championships.”
The Iowa women are in ninth place after the first day of competition with 14 points. Action is set to resume at 12:30 p.m. tomorrow.