Dec. 7, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa track and field program held the annual awards banquet on Dec. 6 to recognize 14 student-athletes for their performance in athletic competition, in the classroom and in the community.
Juniors Aaron Mallett and Elexis Guster were named recipients of the 2015 MVP award. A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Mallett captured the Big Ten title in the men’s outdoor 110-meter hurdles before earning All-America accolades for his school record-setting (13.43) fifth-place finish at the NCAA Championships.
Guster, a native of Atlanta, Georgia, kept her crown at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships, completing the 400 meters in a personal-best 52.19, a time that ranks third on Iowa’s all-time list. She went on to claim honorable mention accolades in the event at the NCAA Championships.
After finishing seventh in the women’s hammer throw at the 2014 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, Annemie Smith is a deserving recipient of the Most Improved award for her bronze medal performance in 2015, becoming the first Hawkeye in school history to throw over 200 feet (200-01.5; 60.99m).
Mitch Wolff was named Most Improved for the men. The senior climbed 13 places from the 2014 Big Ten Outdoor Championships to finish fifth overall in the 400-meter hurdles. The Plainfield, Illinois, native capped his season with second-team All-America honors. He’s the 10th-best performer in the event (51.10) in school history.
Taking home the Most Outstanding Freshman award were sophomores Jahisha Thomas and Carter Lilly. Thomas, a native from London, returns as the team’s top long jumper for the women after sealing a pair of sixth-place finishes at the indoor and outdoor Big Ten Championships. Her collegiate-best indoor (19-7; 5.97m) and outdoor (20-3; 6.17m) marks rank third and fourth all-time at Iowa.
Lilly (Sioux City, Iowa) made his Big Ten Championship debut with a fifth-place finish in the men’s indoor 600 meters (1:18.37), which lands sixth all-time at Iowa, before clocking the ninth-best time in school history in the outdoor 800 meters (1:50.12).
Receiving the Most Outstanding Cross Country Team Member award were sophomores Michael Melchert and Madison Waymire. Melchert, a native of Monticello, Iowa, was a frontrunner for the Hawkeyes in three races this season, including a 17th-place finish at the Big Ten Championships. His collegiate-best 8,000 meters (23:57.5) is slotted 10th on Iowa’s all-time list.
Waymire, of Grimes, Iowa, became the first Hawkeye to lead the team in all six races this season since 2000, running the 10th-fastest 6,000-meter time (21:01.8) in school history at the Big Ten Championships. She was a Big Ten Sportsmanship award honoree.
Other notable honors include:
Inspiration Award: Babatunde Amosu / Brittany Brown
John Raffensperger Dedication Award: Will Teubel / Lindsay Herra
Keatinge/Cretzmeyer Award: Carter Lilly / Madison Waymire
Silver Hawk: Kevin Lewis / Annemie Smith
Teammate Award: Kaleb VanCleave / Annemie Smith