1,600-Meter Relays Advance to Finals

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Iowa track and field team concluded the Stanford Invitational, day two of the Florida Relays, and the Mike Fanelli Track Classic, on Friday. 

The Hawkeye 1,600-meter relay squads both qualified through to the finals on Saturday. On the men’s side, Collin Hofacker, Chris Thompson, Carter Lilly, and Wayne Lawrence Jr. ran their heat in 3:07.63 with a come from behind win to qualify through to the finals, and on the women’s side, Jenny Kimbro, Aly Weum, Payton Wensel, and Mallory King won their heat in 3:40.13 to also qualify through for Saturday’s finals.
Junior Laulauga Tausaga finished second in the discus, throwing 57.74 meters (189-05 1/4) in the invitational section.
“Overall, we’ve had a pretty good meet as a team so far. We saw some improvements in the women’s hammer throw today with some personal bests. Laulauga competed well in the discus today, although I know she wanted more and wanted to get the win, but it’s early in the season and she is training really hard right now. We know they don’t give out any trophies in March.
“We had a lot going on throughout the day, but I thought Jenny Kimbro opened up well in the women’s hurdles then came back and had a stellar lead off leg on the 1,600-meter relay today. Her split was 54.6.
“The highlight of the meet so far was the men’s and women’s 800 meters. Taylor Arco had a huge personal best and did it after leading the entire first 600 meters. Then, Mallory King had a great performance and big personal best in her first 800 meters since last outdoor season. Tysen Van Draska had big breakthrough today running 1:49.2, and Matt Manternach ran right at his PR from last year’s regional meet in his season opener.
“We have a big day tomorrow with a lot of field events and relays.”
Five Hawkeyes made movement on the Iowa top 10 all-time list on Friday, including Allison Wahrman, Amanda Howe, Mallory King, Taylor Arco, and Tysen VanDraska.
Wahrman and Howe now rank seventh and eighth, respectively, on the Hawkeyes’ hammer throw list with marks of 56.55 meters (185-06) and 55.07 meters (180-08). Wahrman’s new personal best is over a three-and-a-half-meter improvement.
The 800-meter group had a successful outing with Mallory King bettering her personal record (2:07.08) to rank fourth all-time at Iowa, Taylor Arco bettering hers to break onto the top 10 list at eighth (2:08.66), and Tysen VanDraska moving from ninth to eighth with a 1:49.22 time.
Three additional Hawkeyes set personal bests at the Florida Relays, including freshman Sydney Winger, sophomore Aly Weum, and junior Macie Weber. Winger ran a personal best in the 100-meter hurdles (14.40), Weum ran her fastest outdoor 400-meter time in 55.21, narrowly missing her overall best (55.16) from the 2019 Big Ten Indoor Championships, and Weber ran the 1,500 meters in 4:43.70, sheading over five seconds off her personal best.
Junior Megan Schott ran a huge personal best (16:28.87) at the Stanford Invitational, shaving nearly half a minute off her previous best time of 16:56.92.
Freshman Jeff Roberts and senior Bailey Hesse-Withbroe ran their fastest 1,500 (3:53.80) and 10,000 meters (31:11.81), respectively at the Mike Fanelli Track Classic in San Francisco, California.
The Hawkeyes compete on Saturday at the Florida Relays, starting with the men’s discus invitational at 10 a.m. (CT). A full schedule of events is linked on hawkeyesports.com/trackschedule.