By JACK ROSSI
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The University of Iowa multi-event athletes opened up the 2018 Big Ten Outdoor Championships with impressive day one totals inside the Haugh Track and Field Complex on the campus of Indiana University.
When the sun went down, the distance runners came out and that is when junior Andrea Shine scored Iowa’s first points of the day. She ran 35:04.50 in the 10,000 meters to place sixth overall.
Junior Dan Soto followed up on the men’s side with the men’s first point. He ran 30:44.24 to place eighth and grab one team point.
Iowa also qualified seven athletes in three events to finals, including three Hawkeyes – Austin Lietz, Chris Douglas, Ray Clarke — in the men’s 400-meter hurdles.
Senior Will Dougherty completed the first day of his final Big Ten decathlon in third place and is on a record-setting pace with 4,004 points through five events with five more slated for tomorrow.
Dougherty set a two foot personal best in the shot put on his way to winning the event with a throw of 49-feet, 6.5-inches (15.10 meters). The Moville, Iowa, native capped the day off with another lifetime best in the 400 meters, running 49.23 to secure his second victory of the day.
Gaynes’s first career Big Ten decathlon has him in ninth place after the first day. He recorded his highest finish in the 400 meters with a time of 49.28. He finished second overall behind Dougherty. Overall, Gaynes tallied 3,639 points.
On the women’s side, sophomore Jenny Kimbro holds fourth place with 3,419 points and junior Tria Simmons isn’t far behind in seventh place with a total of 3,303 points.
Kimbro started and ended the Big Ten heptathlon with personal bests. In the first event of the championships, Kimbro ran a personal best 13.59 in the 100-meter hurdles to improve to fourth in school history and then closed the day with another lifetime best in the 200 meters at 24.49 to finish third.
In her second Big Ten heptathlon Simmons also set personal bests in the 100-meter hurdles (14.13) and 200 meters (24.87) on her way to recording sixth place finishes in each event.
WE’LL SEE YOU ON SUNDAY
Iowa’s seven qualifiers will compete in their respective events on Sunday after securing their spots in the finals on Friday. They athletes include:
400-Meter hurdles – Sunday; women at 1:18 p.m.; men at 1:28 p.m.
Sommer Sharpe – 59.54
Austin Lietz – 52.26, personal best
Chris Douglas – 50.44, personal best, 4th in program history
Raymund Clarke – 52.05, personal best
200 meters – Sunday; Women at 1:35 p.m.; men at 1:42 p.m.
Brittany Brown – 23.46
Antonio Woodard – 21.34
1,500 meters – Sunday at 12:15 p.m.
Michael Melchert – 3:51.33
The 2018 Big Ten Outdoor Championships resumes tomorrow with the decathlon 110-meter hurdles at 9:30 a.m. (CT). Watch the event on FloTrack or BTNPlus. Live results are available at hawkeyesports.com/tracklive.