News on the Drake Relays.

Karissa Schweizer-Dowling-Mizzou
©Jim Kirby 2018

Iowans Take Home Lots of Hardware From the Relays

Gable Sieperda - Central Lyon ©Jim Kirby 2018

Gable Sieperda – Central Lyon
©Jim Kirby 2018

The 109th edition of the Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee thrilled nearly 40,000 fans over four days of action with tremendous performances across all divisions. Monday, April 30, the best of those performances were honored with the announcement of the Relays Most Outstanding Performers.

Courtesy Drake Relays, click here! Feature photo: Karissa Schweizer-Dowling-Mizzou©Jim Kirby 2018

Those winners include Ohio State Zack Bazile as the Maury White Award winner, Missouri’s Karissa Schweizer as the women’s invitational/collegiate Most Outstanding Performer, Central Lyon’s Gable Sieperda as the Robert Kramme Award winner and Linn-Mar’s Payton Wensel as the recipient of the Gerry Cooley Award.

Zack Bazile is the first collegiate Maury White Award winner since 2015 after claiming the long jump title, finishing third in the 100 meters and running a leg on the winning 4×100-meter relay for Ohio State.

Bazile won the long jump with a wind-aided mark of 25-3.25 (7.70m) on his third jump to best the field by more than a foot. With that jump, Bazile became just the second Buckeye to win the Drake Relays long jump and the first since track and field legend Jesse Owens did so in 1935. Bazile may have added on to that jump, but he passed on his fourth and fifth attempts in order to run the 100 meters. His winning long jump mark was the best at the Drake Relays since 2014.

The voting for the women’s collegiate/invitational Drake Relays Most Outstanding performer was near unanimous in selecting Missouri standout and Urbandale, Iowa, native Karissa Schweizer. Schweizer began her return to the Blue Oval by breaking the women’s University/College record in the 5,000 meters. Schweizer’s time of 15:23.21 bested the previous 33-year-old record by more than eight seconds. Her time is the fastest in the NCAA this year and fourth fastest in the world. She returned to the track Saturday afternoon to help Missouri win the distance medley relay in 11:07.59. Schweizer received the baton on her anchor leg with the Tigers in fourth place and clocked a 4:32.19 1,600 meters to move the Tigers through the field and win the event by more than 10 seconds.

The high school competitions produced record-setting performances as they have for generations at Drake Stadium, but there was a pair that was near unanimous selections for Most Outstanding Performer.

Linn-Mar’s Payton Wensel was the runaway vote-getter for the Gerry Cooley Award given to the most outstanding girls’ high school competitor at the Drake Relays.

The senior set a relay and individual record over the weekend and left the Blue Oval with three white flags and a second-place finish. She ran the anchor on Linn-Mar’s sprint medley relay that clocked a Relays record time of 1:44.07, an Iowa all-time best and the second-fastest time in the country this year. Later Friday, she finished second in the 800 meters with a time of 2:12.01. Her return to the Blue Oval Saturday saw her claim a Drake Relays record for herself as she won the 400-meter hurdles in 1:00.25. Her record-setting time is the second-fastest in Iowa history and sixth in the nation this year to help her win the event for the second-straight year. She concluded her final Drake Relays as a high schooler by helping Linn-Mar win its first-ever 4×100-meter relay title.

Gabe Sieperda of Central Lyon earned the Robert Kramme Award, given to the top boys high school competitor.

Sieperda opened the Drake Relays by easily winning the 3,200 meters with a 2:10 final 800 meters to finish in 9:11.17. That time was the 19th fastest on the Iowa all-time list. He completed the distance sweep on Saturday by clocking a 14-second season-best in the 1,600 meters in 4:15.68. He also turned in a sixth-place finish in the 800 meters.

The 109th Drake Relays presented by Hy-Vee featured the 53rd consecutive Saturday sellout with 14,504 fans crowded around the Blue Oval after more than 16,000 fans streamed through the gates during the two Friday sessions. The 109th edition of America’s Athletic Classic is scheduled for April 24-27, 2019.

2018 Drake Relays Most Outstanding Performers
Maury White Award (Collegiate/Invitational Men) – Zack Bazile, Ohio State
Collegiate/Invitational Women – Karissa Schweizer – Missouri
Robert Kramme Award (High School Boys) – Gable Sieperda – Central Lyon
Gerry Cooley Award (High School Girls) – Payton Wensel – Linn-Mar

AR7C3495

Next Level Iowa Podcast For May 1st 2018: Drake Wrap-Brenda Martinez, Alex Wilson, Brette Corey and Michelle Mumm

Michelle Mumm-Neola-Morningside ©Jim Kirby 2018

Michelle Mumm-Neola-Morningside
©Jim Kirby 2018

On this edition of the Next Level Iowa Podcast we look back at last weekend’s Drake Relays and talk to a variety of athletes such as Olympian Brenda Martinez, now professional Alex Wilson-Mt. Vernon Lisbon-UNI, Brette Corey-W. Dubuque-UNI and Michelle Mumm-Neola-Morningside.

Feature photo: Olympian Brenda Martinez ©Jim Kirby 2018

We also look ahead to the upcoming conference meets, regionals and the NCAA Nationals.  All this and more on this week’s Next Level Iowa Podcast.

Elijah Young-DM Lincoln-ISU
©Luke Lu-Cyclones Athletics

Cyclones Set For Drake

Larkin Chapman-Muscatine-ISU ©Darren Miller-Hawkeyesports.com 2018

Larkin Chapman-Muscatine-ISU
©Darren Miller-Hawkeyesports.com 2018

The shortest trip of the outdoor season awaits the Iowa State track and field teams this weekend, as the Cyclones head to Des Moines for the 2018 Drake Relays. Competition for the Cyclones begins with the Distance Carnival on Thursday, starting at 4:30 p.m., with competition following all day Friday and Saturday.

Courtesy Cyclone Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Elijah Young-DM Lincoln-ISU©Luke Lu-Cyclones Athletics 2017

Tickets for all sessions are still available through the Drake Ticket Office, here.

Live video will be provided by USATF.TV, a subscription-based service. For more info, click here. NBC Sports Network will have live coverage from the meet on Saturday from 2-4 p.m. Live results will come via Prime Time Timing, here.

On the track, with many of the Cyclone runners having already achieved times that will qualify them for the NCAA West Prelims next month, the focus will be on the relays. The Cyclone middle distance and distance squads will be looking to collect Drake Relays flags in the 4x800s and distance medley relays, while the ISU men will look to build on last weekend’s 3:07.57 in the 4×400-meter relay.

Individually, the Cyclone women will see Karly Ackley and Anne Frisbie in the women’s 5,000 on Thursday night, a field that includes multiple-time NCAA champion Karissa Schweitzer from Missouri. The Cyclone hurdlers will be the ones to watch on the men’s side, with Logan Schneider having a strong season, and Elijah Young running in his hometown of Des Moines.

In the field, Jhoanmy Luque will be back to defend her titles in the university/college long jump and triple jump. The Cyclones will also bring strong squads in the field events, with Vlad Pavlenko and Chris Celonain the men’s hammer throw, and Essence Henderson entered in the women’s discus and shot put.

Iowa State Entries (as of Apr. 22)
Men
800m Run: Zach Black
1,500m Run: Zach Black, Greyson Dolezal
5,000m Run: Greyson Dolezal, John Nownes
110m Hurdles: Logan Schneider, Elijah Young
4x400m Relay: One Team
4x800m Relay: One Team
Sprint Medley Relay: One Team
Distance Medley Relay: One Team
High Jump: Cody Durbin
Hammer Throw: Chris Celona, Vlad Pavlenko
Javelin: Blake Hughes

Women
800m Run: Larkin Chapman
5,000m Run: Karly Ackley, Anne Frisbie, Adriana Kammerer
100m Hurdles: Tasha Frazier
400m Hurdles: Emma Whigham
3,000m Steeplechase: Abby Caldwell
4x800m Relay: One Team
4×1,600m Relay: One Team
Distance Medley Relay: One Team
Long Jump: Tasha Frazier, Jhoanmy Luque
Triple Jump: Jalaiya Bartley, Jhoanmy Luque
Shot Put: Essence Henderson, Keiara Williams
Discus: Essence Henderson
Hammer Throw: Tessa Krempel

Chaley Rath-Treynor-UNI
©Mike Byrnes 2017

Panthers Have Big First Day at Drake

Lauren Frederick-UNI ©Jim Kirby 2017

Lauren Frederick-UNI
©Jim Kirby 2017

The University of Northern Iowa track and field program capped its opening day at the Drake Relays on Wednesday, with the Panthers competing in the decathlon and heptathlon.

Courtesy Panthers Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Chaley Rath-Treynor-UNI ©Mike Byrnes 2017

UNI’s Brooke Lorenz sits in second place for the heptathlon, after scoring 2,974 points on Wednesday. The junior finished runner up in the high jump and 200 to cap her stellar day on the track. Chaley Rath is not far behind at fourth overall, after she claimed first in the high jump with a mark of 5-06. Erica Loussaert and Lauren Frederick round out the Panther competitors at fifth and sixth overall for the heptathlon.

On the men’s side, Austin Heitland is in third place for the decathlon with 3,713 points after finishing first in the 100 and 400, before taking third overall in the shot put. Michael Santi had a runner-up finish in the 100 but pulled out of the decathlon later on.

UNI will be back at the Drake Relays on Thursday, with the multi events beginning at 10:30 a.m. and track action starting at 4:30 p.m.

LIVE RESULTS
Live results and heat sheets for the Drake can be found here. A live stream is available through USATF.TV, which requires a subscription.

UP NEXT
Following this week’s action in Des Moines, the Panthers will compete at the Wisconsin Twilight on Friday, May 4 in Madison. The Panthers will compete at the MVC Outdoor Championships in Terre Haute, Indiana on May 11-13.  

SOCIAL MEDIA
Get all the latest information on the team by following @UNITrackFieldXC on Twitter and @UNITrackandField on Facebook. General athletic news can also be found at @UNIAthletics on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Drake Relays
Wednesday, April 25 – Des Moines, Iowa

Top 5 Finishes
Men Decathlon Events
SP: Austin Heitland (3rd, 41-0)
100: Austin Heitland (1st, 10.97), Michael Santi (2nd, 11.07)
400: Austin Heitland (1st, 49.20)

Current Decathlon Standings
Austin Heitland (3rd, 3713)

Women Heptathlon Events
SP: Lauren Frederick (2nd, 35-08), Brooke Lorenz (5th, 33-08)
HJ: Chaley Rath (1st, 5-06), Brooke Lorenz (2nd, 5-05), Erica Loussaert (3rd, 5-04)
100H: Chaley Rath (3rd, 14.68), Erica Loussaert (4th, 14.75)
200: Brooke Lorenz (2nd, 25.99)

Current Heptathlon Standings
Brooke Lorenz (2nd, 2974)
Chaley Rath (4th, 2916)
Erica Loussaert (5th, 2877)
Lauren Frederick (6th, 2844)

Katie Nageotte-USATF Champion
©Jim Kirby 2018

Drake Relays: Suhr and Irwin Win Capital Square Vault

Jenn Suhr, a three-time Olympian and indoor world record holder ©Jim Kirby 2018

Jenn Suhr, a three-time Olympian and indoor world record holder
©Jim Kirby 2018

Jenn Suhr, a three-time Olympian and indoor world record holder, and Andrew Irwin won the third-annual Capital Square Vault presented by Catch Des Moines and the Des Moines Register in downtown Des Moines Wednesday evening, April 25.

Courtesy Drake Relays,for interviews and full article click here! Feature photo: Katie Nageotte-USATF Champion©Jim Kirby 2018

 

Suhr was nearly perfect on the night as she cleared the bar on the first attempt at the first two heights. She then cleared 15-9 on her third attempt to secure the win. Suhr attempted to break her own indoor world record at 16-6.5, but got over hyped which caused her timing to be off and wasn’t able to set a new world record.

 

Irwin got out to a tough start as he need all three attempts to clear the first height. He became more comfortable and went to match his personal best and clear 18-4.5 on his first attempt to win.

 

Katie Nageotte finished in second on the women’s side as she cleared 15-5 on her first attempt and missed all three attempts at 15-9.

 

Shawn Barber, the 2016 Drake Relays Champion, came in second in the men’s competition as he cleared 18-4.5 on his second attempt.

 

RESULTS

 

Men

  1. Andrew Irwin, Arkansas Vault Club, 18-4.5 (5.60)
  2. Shawn Barber, Nike Canada, 18-4.5 (5.60)
  3. Sam Kendricks, Nike, 18-0.5 (5.50)
  4. Mike Arnold, Nike, 18-0.5 (5.50)
  5. Scott Houston, Shore AC, 17-8.5 (5.40)

 

Women

  1. Jenn Suhr, adidas, 15-9 (4.80)
  2. Katie Nageotte, Nike, 15-5 (4.70)
  3. Sandi Morris, Nike, 15-5 (4.70)
  4. Kristen Brown, Chula Vista Elite 13-11.25 (4.25)

Kristen Hixson, Unattached, NH

Cole Decker-Dowling-Central
©Jim Kirby

Dutch Alum Decker Wins Drake Half

Cole Decker-Dowling-Central ©Jim Kirby

Cole Decker-Dowling-Central
©Jim Kirby

Cole Decker ’17, a former member of the Central College men’s cross country and track and field programs, took the title at the Drake Relays half-marathon road race Sunday.

Courtesy Dutch Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Cole Decker-Dowling-Central©Jim Kirby

Completing the 13.1 mile course in 1 hour, 11 minutes and 51 seconds, Decker outpaced the No. 2 runner Mitchell Davis by 1:22 to win the men’s division at the 50th annual road races.

At Central, Decker was a two-time All-American in the 10,000-meter run by placing eighth in 2015 and second in 2016 at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships. He also was seventh in the 5,000-meter run in 2016. In cross country, Decker was an All-American in after placing 22nd at the 2015 NCAA Division III Championships.

As a senior in high school Dowling Catholic in West Des Moines, Decker was the 2012 Drake Relays 3,200-meter race winner.

The 109th Drake Relays kick off Wednesday at Drake Stadium, while the Dutch teams will send athletes to Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Jasmine Blue-CR Jeff., Maddie Bell-Hudson, Maddie Irmen-Assumption and Lyndsie Schinkel-Ankeny
©Jim Kirby 2017

Panthers Set For Drake

Lindsey Kite-Jesup-UNI ©Mike Brynes 2017

Lindsey Kite-Jesup-UNI
©Mike Brynes 2017

After a very successful start to the 2018 outdoor season, the University of Northern Iowa track and field program will face a big test this week as the Panthers make the short trip to Des Moines for the Drake Relays on April 25-28.

Courtesy Panthers Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Jasmine Blue-CR Jeff., Maddie Bell-Hudson, Maddie Irmen-Assumption and Lyndsie Schinkel-Ankeny©Jim Kirby 2017 

The event will be held at the Blue Oval in Des Moines, with the first day of action starting on Wednesday, April 25 and wrapping up on Saturday, April 28. Drake, Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska and Ohio State will be just a few of the big names to join the Panthers for competition at the Drake Relays this week.

UNI will send 26 student-athletes on the men’s side and 25 on the women’s side this week, with the first events starting at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday.

The Panthers head to Drake after another successful weekend on the track, UNI won a total of 12 events at the Tom Botts Invite to close out action in Missouri. Senior Sarah Pate claimed MVC Track Athlete of the Week honors after breaking her own school record in the hammer throw, earning a mark of 207-02 in the event to take first overall.

LIVE RESULTS
Live results and heat sheets for the Drake can be found here. A live stream is available through USATF.TV, which requires a subscription.

UP NEXT
Following this week’s action in Des Moines, the Panthers will compete at the Wisconsin Twilight on Friday, May 4 in Madison. The Panthers will compete at the MVC Outdoor Championships in Terre Haute, Indiana on May 11-13.  

SOCIAL MEDIA
Get all the latest information on the team by following @UNITrackFieldXC on Twitter and @UNITrackandField on Facebook. General athletic news can also be found at @UNIAthletics on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Joey Woody & the Iowa Hawkeyes
©Darren Miller Hawkeyesports.com 2017

Hawks Set to Repeat as Relays Hy Vee Cup Winners

Karson Sommer-Pleasant Valley-Iowa ©Mike Brynes 2018

Karson Sommer-Pleasant Valley-Iowa
©Mike Brynes 2018

The University of Iowa men’s track and field team won the Drake Relays Hy-Vee Cup in 2017 and director of track and field Joey Woody isn’t content with stopping there.

Courtesy Hawkeye Sports, click here! Feature photo: Joey Woody & the Iowa Hawkeyes ©Darren Miller Hawkeyesports.com 2017

Woody is not only positioning the Hawkeye men for a Hy-Vee Cup repeat from April 26-28 on Des Moines’s Jim Duncan Track, but he wants the women to join the celebration as well.

“One of our goals on both sides is to win the Hy-Vee Cup,” Woody said. “I feel good about what we’re doing. We have some great relays, so it is going to be a fun weekend.”

Started in 2013, the Hy-Vee Cup champion is the program that scores the most points in the 4×100, 4×400, 4×800, sprint medley, and distance medley relays. The Iowa men won the Hy-Vee Cup for the first time last year with a total of 39 points. The Hawkeyes won three relays: 4×800 (7:24.77), 4×400 (3:07.35), and sprint medley (3:20.40).

“It showed our overall team ability and being able to cover a lot of events; that was great to recognize our program last year,” Woody said. “It has been our goal the last few years to go in and win the Drake Relays Hy-Vee Cup. That was something we planned on doing; it was a battle, but our kids showed up.”

Woody was overwhelmed by the reaction that ensued from the Iowa City community and around the state. It also provided an assist in recruiting.

“One of my goals is to recruit the best kids in the state of Iowa and make sure they stay Hawkeyes,” Woody said. “We had a great recruiting class and I think a lot of it is (because of) what we’re doing at the Drake Relays.”

With a target on its back, Woody expects Iowa to receive stiff challenges from Big Ten Conference foes Illinois, Ohio State, and Purdue.

“We’re going to have to fight to win a lot of these events,” Woody said. “Some good Big Ten teams are going to be competing against us head-to-head, but that will give us a good idea where we stand going into the Big Ten Championships (on May 11-13).”

The Hawkeyes are standing tall based on scoring potential from outdoor season performance lists. On paper, Iowa is seeded first among Big Ten men’s teams and third among women. The Hawkeyes have Big Ten-leading performances in seven events: Brittany Brown (women’s 200-meter dash, 22.76), Mar’yea Harris (men’s 400, 45.71), Nathan Mylenek (men’s 3,000 steeplechase, 8:48.66), Laulauga Tausaga (women’s discus, 196-feet, 5-inches), Jahisha Thomas (women’s long jump, 21-1 ½), and the men’s 4×400 relay (3:04.38).

“I feel good about our chances at the NCAA level,” Woody said. “To get athletes like Brittany and Bri (Guillory) and Lagi (Tausaga) and Jahisha, that’s a great core of four athletes on the women’s team. Plus our relays and what we’re doing there.

“Then on the men’s side with the relays and Mar’yea. We have great things happening in the hurdles right now, Reno (Tuufuli) in the discus and shot. We have exciting things happening on both sides on the national level, too.”

Tuufuli is the defending Big Ten men’s discus champion with a winning mark of 194-feet, 8-inches (59.34 meters).

The Hawkeyes will not enter multi-event performers, meaning their events at the Drake Relays begin Thursday. Live results are available HERE.

“The Drake Relays is one of the premiere events on the globe,” Woody said. “We get a lot of great fan support and we want to prove that we’re one of the best teams in the country. To be able to go to Drake and get that recognition is a lot of fun for our student-athletes.”

Emily Lipari The Wins Grand Blue Mile
©Jim Kirby 2018

Lipari and Masters Win Grand Blue Mile

Riley Masters Wins The Grand Blue Mile ©Jim Kirby 2018

Riley Masters Wins The Grand Blue Mile
©Jim Kirby 2018

Riley Masters and Emily Lipari bested their respective fields to win the Ninth-Annual Invitational Grand Blue Mile and USATF 1-Mile Road Championship Tuesday, April 24, evening in Des Moines.

Courtesy Drake Relays, click here! Feature photo: Emily Lipari The Wins Grand Blue Mile ©Jim Kirby 2018

 

Masters, who was second in the event last year and third in 2016, finished in 4:03.12 to earn the USATF 1-Mile Road title against a field of 20 of the nation’s top milers. Eric Avila and Nick Harris trailed in second and third places in 4:03.90 and 4:04.31, respectively.

 

“Once I crossed the finish line it was pure ecstasy, I was so excited,” Masters said. “I told myself at the start line, ‘you worked so hard this year, why settle for anything but first?’ I’m happy to finally come out on top here.”

 

Emily Lipari, a six-time All-American at Villanova, came into the event with a road mile personal best of 4:35 and shattered that with a 4:32.77 finish. Lipari held off Olympian Brenda Martinez at the tape, who finished in 4:33.07 followed by Rachel Schneider in third in 4:33.77 among the 15-runner field.

 

“It’s pretty unreal. I set out to podium, that was the goal,” Lipari said of being the USATF 1-Mile Road Champion. “I’m really happy to come out with the win and it’s a great way to start out the year.”

 

Masters and Lipari each took home $5,000 for their titles as a total of $30,000 in prize money was distributed to Tuesday’s top finishers.

 

More the 3,500 runners navigated the 1-mile course in recreational, competitive and invitational races. One of the highlights of the men’s recreational race was 96-year-old Mike Fremont of Cincinnati, Ohio, setting the American road mile record in the 95+ age category with a time of 13:55.82. He will appear at Drake Stadium Friday morning to attempt to break the World Record in 95+ age category of the 800 meters.

 

 

Men’s Grand Blue Mile Invitational

USATF 1-Mile Road Championship

  1. Riley Masters, 4:03.12
  2. Eric Avila, 4:03.90
  3. Nick Harris, 4:04.31
  4. Daniel Herrera, 4:04.32
  5. Brandon Lasater, 4:04.39
  6. Garret Heath, 4:04.96
  7. Tripp Hurt, 4:04.99
  8. Pat Casey, 4:05.07
  9. Brannon Kidder, 4:05.38
  10. Emmanuel Bor, 4:05.77
  11. Dylan Blakenbaker, 4:06.20
  12. Brandon Hazouri, 4:07.13
  13. Henry Wayne, 4:07.99
  14. Graham Crawford, 4:09.70
  15. Leo Manzano, 4:09.83
  16. Jackson Thomas, 4:10.03
  17. Mikey Brannigan, 4:11.56
  18. Dey Dey, 4:12.03
  19. Chad Noelle, 4:14.60
  20. Eliud Rutto, 4:15.40

 

 

Women’s Grand Blue Mile Invitational

USATF 1-Mile Road Championship

  1. Emily Lipari, 4:32.87
  2. Brenda Martinez, 4:33.07
  3. Rachel Schneider, 4:33.77
  4. Shannon Osika, 4:33.94
  5. Katie Mackey, 4:34.93
  6. Sarah Brown, 4:37.15
  7. Therese Haiss, 4:38.02
  8. Eleanor Fulton, 4:39.10
  9. Dana Mecke, 4:39.90
  10. Megan Mansy, 4:40.81
  11. Alexina Wilson, 4:42.94
  12. Jessica Kamilos, 4:44.27
  13. Savannah Colon, 4:46.69
  14. Anna Connor, 4:47.37
  15. Rachel Weber, 4:48.57
©Jim Kirby

Next Level Iowa Podcast For April 24, 2018: Drake Relays! and Jason Cowley of the S.C. Journal

@jim Kirby 2016

@jim Kirby 2016

On this edition of the Next Level Iowa Podcast we talk Drake Relays! “It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Our hearts will be glowing…..” Sorry about that, I get carried away sometimes!

Mike and I preview the coming Drake Relays Week, who to watch and where to watch them.

We also talk with long time sports reporter from the Sioux City Journal, Jason Cowley about athletes from Western Iowa and the weather they’ve faced this year.

We also take a look back at some of the other meets from last weekend.  All this more, on the Next Level Iowa Podcast!