BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – University of Iowa track and field finished day one of the NCAA Indoor Championships with an All-America performance from senior Tyler Lienau in the weight throw, and advanced three men to the 400-meter final.
Lienau, a Jesup, Iowa, native, and the Iowa school-record holder clinched an eighth-place finish in the weight throw on his final attempt of the day (22.08m / 72’5.25”) to earn his first career All-America honors.
“To be able to not only make it to this meet, but to go out as an All-American in his final year and score points for the team is a big deal,” Iowa Director of Track and Field Joey Woody said. “I’m super proud of Tyler [Lienau].”
Freshmen Jenoah McKiver (45.83) and Chadrick Richards (46.56), and junior Wayne Lawrence, Jr. (46.57) all advanced to tomorrow’s final from the prelims. McKiver qualified second-fastest, Chadrick Richards won his heat and qualified seventh-fastest and Lawrence, Jr. earned the final transfer spot.
“I was proud of how those guys went out and competed,” Woody said. “They worked through adversity and made some really good moves to protect their positions and finished very strong. I’m very happy for Wayne [Lawrence, Jr.] to make his first individual final. He’s been to the national meet a lot of times in the relays and open events, but this is his first final. Coach Wakenight has done a great job with these guys all year.”
In the heptathlon, sophomore Austin West turned in a third-place finish in the long jump (7.37m / 24’2.25”) and sits in ninth place overall after day one. West will compete in the 60-meter hurdles, pole vault and 1,000-meter run tomorrow.
“Austin [West] had a great long jump today,” Woody said. “He’s in a good spot going into tomorrow and competed hard all day. With a good day tomorrow, I think he has a really good shot to be a first-team All-American and get on the podium.”
Sophomores Gratt Reed (7.78) and Grant Conway (7.84) each finished their seasons as second-team All-Americans in the 60-meter hurdles. Additionally, sophomore Kalen Walker finished his season as a second-team All-American in the 60 meters (6.64).
“For Gratt [Reed], Grant [Conway] and Kalen [Walker], it was their first NCAA Championships,” Woody said. “Sometimes you have to get to this environment to know what it’s all about, and then the next time you’re here you can take it to the next level, and I think those three guys fit that bill.”
West gets the Hawkeyes started again tomorrow morning at the Birmingham CrossPlex for day two of the NCAA Indoor Championships. Senior Nik Curtiss will compete in the shot put at 4 p.m. (CT) and McKiver, Richards and Lawrence, Jr. will run in the 400-meter final at 4:20 p.m. (CT). The Hawkeye men’s 4×400-meter relay squad is slated to run at 5:20 p.m. (CT) and the women’s quartet will be the final event for Iowa at 8:20 p.m. (CT). The meet will be broadcasted on ESPN3.
Heptathlon (Day 1):
9. Austin West – 3,216 pts. (-376)
9. 60 Meters – 7.05
3. Long Jump – 7.37m / 24’2.25”
8. Shot Put – 13.95m /45’9.25”
14. High Jump – 1.91m / 6’3.25”
Men’s Weight Throw:
8. Tyler Lienau – 22.08m / 72’5.25”, All-American
Men’s 60 Meters
13. Kalen Walker – 6.64 – Second-Team All-American
Men’s 60-Meter Hurdles
12. Gratt Reed – 7.78 – Second-Team All-American
15. Grant Conway – 7.84 – Second-Team All-American
2. Jenoah McKiver – 45.83 q
7. Chadrick Richards – 46.56 q
8. Wayne Lawrence, Jr. – 46.57 q