By JACK ROSSI
IOWA CITY, Iowa – In Iowa’s second home meet in as many weeks, sophomore O’Shea Wilson highlighted the Hawkeye Invitational with his record-breaking long jump on Saturday inside the UI Recreation building.
The University of Iowa track and field team was joined by five teams: Iowa Central CC, Northern Iowa, Western Illinois, Iowa State, and South Dakota, but while many Hawkeyes rested for the flurry of upcoming meets, Wilson returned to the track with force after an injury riddled collegiate career.
“The performance of the meet was O’Shea (Wilson) in the long jump,” UI director of track and field Joey Woody said. “It’s the number one jump in the country right now so that is impressive.”
On his final jump, Wilson recorded a personal best and collegiate leading jump of 7.86m (25-9 ½). That mark set a meet record and ranks third all-time in Iowa history.
“It feels great,” Wilson said. “I haven’t jumped in two and a half years and I finally opened up. It felt great to compete again. Coming off an injury, I am going to take it day by day moving forward.”
Iowa found more success in the 60-meter hurdles. All-American senior Aaron Mallett set a facility record with a time of 7.79 seconds to claim his second straight event title while junior Jahisha Thomas set a meet record on the women’s side, sprinting to a time of 8.46 seconds to win the event and lead Iowa to sweep the top three.
“I didn’t know I set a meet record,” Thomas said. “I was not happy with my time in prelims because I went faster last week and I wasn’t happy with that time either. I talked to coach and my teammates and I knew I could do it, so when I saw the score in the finals, I thought to myself ‘that’s more like it.'”
Freshman Anthony Chaidez competed in one of the closest races of the night, fending off three Northern Iowa runners on the final lap to win the men’s 600-meters.
“I knew I was slow on the first two laps,” Chaidez said. “I hit the 400-meter mark and was really slow, so at that point it was about winning the race because I knew I wasn’t going to set a PR. I know I have a strong kick, so I was trying to get close enough to use my kick and hold them off for the final lap.”
Iowa ended the meet with 6 event titles and 14 personal bests.
“I told everybody I was proud at how we came out and competed from the beginning of the meet to the end of the meet,” Woody said. “That is what we want to see. We want people to look at our program and see tough competitors.”
The Hawkeyes are back in action in Iowa City next Friday, Jan. 20 for the Larry Wieczorek Invitational. Admission is free.
Women’s Shot Put
Nia Britt – personal best
Erika Hammond – personal best
Men’s Shot Put
Will Dougherty – personal best
Women’s 60m hurdles
Jenny Kimbro – personal best
Allison Wahrman – personal best
Aubrianna Lantrip – personal best
Heaven Chandler – personal best
Men’s Pole Vault
Josh Pelock – personal best
Women’s 60m Dash
Jalynn Roberts-Lewis – personal best
Men’s 60m Dash
Jacob Gourley – personal best
Will Dougherty — personal best
Men’s 200m Dash
Emmanuel Ogwo – meet record
Men’s Long Jump
Will Dougherty — personal best