By JACK ROSSI
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The University of Iowa track and field team named eight All-Americans at the NCAA Indoor Championships inside Gilliam Indoor Stadium on Saturday.
Iowa finished the weekend with three first-team All-Americans and four second team All-Americans. The team entered Saturday with three events set to compete for NCAA Championships: junior Brittany Brown (200-meters), senior Aaron Mallett (60-meter hurdles), and the men’s 400-meter relay.
Brown earned her first indoor first-team All-American honor with a fifth place finish in the 200-meters. She finished with a time of 22.92. She is the first indoor All-American in the 200-meters since Yolanda Hobbs in 1995.
“She competed extremely well today,” UI director of track and field Joey Woody said. “She is still figuring out how she runs the race on a banked track. I am really proud of her after coming off injury last year and putting it all together. Coach Roberts has done a great job of getting things ready for this championship.”
After a good start, Mallett stumbled on a hurdle and ended up finishing eighth. However, he did grab his third straight indoor first-team All-American honor.
“It is disappointing,” Woody said. “He expects a lot more from himself. He tried to do too much, sometimes that helps you, sometimes that hurts, and today it hurt him. We will take this as motivation for outdoor season.”
The meet ended with the men’s 4×400-meter relay team of freshman Emmanuel Ogwo, freshman Collin Hofacker, sophomore DeJuan Frye, and sophomore Mar’yea Harris finishing fifth place overall with a time of 3:05.60.
“We have a team that could have been top-three,” Woody said. “We were a little behind when Mar’yea got the stick and the gap opened up for him but just a little too late. If it opened up earlier I think he would have caught both teams ahead of him.”
With the conclusion of the indoor season, the Hawkeyes are taking little time to relax before the outdoor season begins.
“They will be fired up,” Woody said of the quick turnaround. “Outdoor season starts right now, so we will take a little break next week, but the training starts for outdoor right now. We believe that we have the athletes outdoor that can do damage in the Big Ten Championships and get a lot more qualifiers into NCAAs.”
Iowa begins the outdoor season next weekend at the Baldy Castillo Invitational in Tempe, Arizona.
Aaron Mallett: 60-meter hurdles
Brittany Brown: 200-meters
Emmanuel Ogwo: 4x400m Relay
Collin Hofacker: 4x400m Relay
DeJuan Frye: 4x400m Relay
Mar’yea Harris: 4x400m Relay
Carter Lilly: 800-meters
Mar’yea Harris: 400-meters
O’Shea Wilson: Long Jump
Jahisha Thomas: Long Jump