All the news from Division I Mens and Womens Track.

Drake Relays
©Jim Kirby

Drake Relays 2015: “The Sky’s the Limit”

Aries Merritt ©Jim Kirby

Aries Merritt
©Jim Kirby

The Drake Relays Presented By Hy-Vee has brought some of the finest athletes in the world to Des Moines for 105 years and 2015 will be no different as Drake Relays director Brian Brown has declared ‘The Sky Is The Limit’ for this season’s competition in Des Moines.

Brown announced the first round of elite athletes and events on Tuesday, Feb. 24, plus schedule and venue changes for events outside of Drake Stadium.

Ryan Grant, Director, Sports Marketing and Events at Hy-Vee, was also on hand to discuss Hy-Vee’s continued relationship as the presenting sponsor of the Drake Relays and the Hy-Vee Road Races at the Drake Relays. Hy-Vee’s partnership with the Drake Relays is a natural extension of its long-standing commitment to health and wellness in our local communities.

The Hy-Vee Road Races at the Drake Relays will be held on Sunday, April 26th. The Hy-Vee Road Races present an opportunity for people of all skill levels to be actively involved in the Drake Relays. Early bird registration has been extended to March 14th for the 5k run/walk, the 10k run and the half marathon. Information and registration for the Hy-Vee Road Races can be found at

Relays week will kick off a day earlier this spring with the annual Beautiful Bulldog contest on Sunday, April 19, in the Knapp Center. The internationally adored event begins a full week of Relays festivities in Des Moines that continues on Tuesday, April 21, with the Grand Blue Mile on the streets of downtown Des Moines. Registration for the popular 1-mile road race opens to the public on Feb. 26.

The most notable physical change to Relays week comes on Wednesday, April 22, as the pole vault leaves the familiar confines of Jordan Creek Town Centre for the heart of downtown Des Moines. This year’s pole vault exhibition will take place on Court Avenue as some of the world’s top vaulters take to the streets and airspace of the popular entertainment district.

Scheduled to compete in the men’s event is Olympic gold medalist, world record holder and defending Relays stadium champion Renaud Lavillenie of France. The women’s field features world record holder and No. 3 in the world Jenn Suhr of the U.S. and the world’s No. 2 vaulter and 2013 and 2014 Relays champion Yarisley Silva of Cuba.

Those events early in the week will serve as appetizers for the incredible fields lined up to compete inside Drake Stadium April 23-25. Friday night is again ‘Hy-Vee Night at the Relays’ with some of the top athletes in the history of track and field set to preview this summer’s IAAF World Championships in Beijing, China.

Brenda Martinez ©Jim Kirby

Brenda Martinez
©Jim Kirby

A new event will also be added to the Friday night’s schedule with the women’s 800 meters. Eight of the top 10 American 800-meter runners are poised to line up at Drake Stadium including world No. 2 Ajee Wilson and No. 3 Brenda Martinez.

In its tradition of welcoming the world’s finest athletes to the Blue Oval, the Relays will stage a 200-meter paralympic race on Friday, April 24 with T44 classification athletes, including world record holder Richard Browne and former world record holder Jarryd Wallace. The T44 classification is for athletes that run with the use of prosthetics. Browne won silver in the 2012 Paralympic Games in the 100 meters while Wallace took gold in the International Paralympic Committee’s 2013 World Championships.

Joining the field will be a T11 competitor in David Brown who is blind and runs with the aid of a guide runner. Brown owns the T11 world records in both the 100 and 200 meters.

Last year’s men’s 400 meters was one for the ages with American LaShawn Merritt and Kirani James of Grenada writing another chapter in their storied rivalry with Merritt narrowly edging James, the 2012 Olympic gold medalist. The pair will reprise that role this year in a 400-meter field that features seven of the top 10 ranked athletes in the world with Merritt and James being followed by the Nos. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 10 400-meter runners.

The men’s 110-meter hurdle field is similarly exceptional with seven of the top 10 in the world confirmed to step into the blocks. World No. 1 Pascal Martinot-Lagarde of France will be joined by the world’s Nos. 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 hurdlers, in addition to world record holder Aries Merritt. World No. 3 Hansle Parchment will try to defend his 2014 Relays title against the star-studded field.

Many of those hurdlers will also participate in the always thrilling shuttle hurdle relay with three teams of four competing in the back-and-forth race along the Blue Oval straightaway. Currently, two teams of Americans – David Oliver, Aries Merritt, Ashton Eaton, Alec Harris and Ronnie Ash, Ryan Wilson, Spencer Adams, Jason Richardson – will line up against a team of Jamaicans in Parchment and Andrew Riley and French brothers Pascal and Thomas Martinot-Lagarde.

The men’s high jump also returns to Hy-Vee Night at the Relays in an encore of last year’s thrilling competition that saw Derek Drouin set a Drake Relays and Canadian national record by clearing 7-10.5. Challenging Drouin’s attempts at repeating as Relays champion is a field that has five of the top 10 Americans slated to jump.

As the elite professional fields continue to come together, Brown has also bolstered the collegiate competition with commitments from Arizona, Arizona State, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech set to join the traditional lineup of collegiate programs inside Drake Stadium. Those teams will join the likes of Arkansas, Baylor, Nebraska, Georgia, Kansas, Illinois, Purdue, Ohio State and Wisconsin in competing for the Hy-Vee Cup, awarded to the top scoring team in the collegiate relay events. Baylor won the women’s Hy-Vee Cup last season while Arkansas and Illinois shared the men’s title.

Allison Gregg-Cedar Falls-Alabama ©John Michael Simpson

Tide’s Gregg Sets 5K PR

Allison Gregg-Cedar Falls-Alabama ©John Michael Simpson

Allison Gregg-Cedar Falls-Alabama ©John Michael Simpson

We here at the Next Level Iowa believes Allison Greg-Cedar Falls-Alabama believes more props for her personal best of 17:00.08 for a 7th place finish at the John Mitchell Alabama Relays in Tuscaloosa, AL.

According to sources Allison’s previous best was 17:22.78 for a third place 5k finish at the Alabama Relays.

Allison, we recognize your accomplishment and wish you the best this season!


Henry Kelly-Waukee-ISU
©Jim Kirby

PR’s in Abundance For Clones in Opener

Henry Kelly-Waukee-ISU ©Jim Kirby

Henry Kelly-Waukee-ISU
©Jim Kirby

The Iowa State men’s and women’s track and field teams kicked off the 2015 outdoor season over the weekend at the Baldy Castillo Invitational hosted in Tempe, Ariz. Six different Cyclones set individual personal best marks over the course of the two-day event.

Iowa State’s men’s squad finished seventh with 30 total team points, while the women earned eighth with 49.

Courtesy Cyclone Athletics

Redshirt senior Henry Kelley started the Cyclones off on the right foot Friday night hurling an impressive 187’ 10” (57.26m) to place 10th in the hammer throw. The Waukee, Iowa native’s personal record toss moved him from sixth to fifth on Iowa State’s all-time top-performers chart.

Anna Holtermann and Kayla Sanborn competed on the women’s side of the hammer throw, taking 13th (176-08.00) and 21st (159-06.00) respectively.

Iowa State resumed action on Saturday with the men’s 110-meter hurdles. Freshman Logan Schneider and junior Taylor Sanderson scored big team points for the Cyclones capturing third and fourth overall in the race.

Senior Kendra White owned the women’s 400-meter dash taking first place and finishing more than two seconds ahead of the second-place runner. White is coming off an indoor season that saw her set a school record in the 400-meter run (53.81).

In the first outdoor meet of her collegiate career Jhoanmy Luque scored 18 team points on her own, posting a 19-05.5 second-place mark in the long jump and won the triple jump with the second-best leap in the country of 41-01.25. The Valencia, Carabobo, Venezuela native moved into seventh on the Iowa State all-time performers list the long jump.

The Cyclones will return to action in two weeks with a pair of meets. The team is scheduled to run in the Tiger Track Classic in Auburn, Ala. and the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, California. Follow Iowa State track and field’s twitter account @cyclonetrackxc for live updates on the meets. Results will be posted on at the conclusion of each day.

Cyclone PR’s

  • *Henry Kelly (HT): 187-10.00
  • *Taylor Sanderson (Discuss): 136-07.00
  • *Kaci Storm (100m H): 14.60
  • *Alyssa Gonzalez (400m H): 1:00.93
  • *Jhoanmy Luque (LJ): 19-05.5
  • *Logan Schneider (200m): 22.31


  • Hammer Throw (M): 1) Gian Ferretti, Minnesota, 226-02.00; 10) Henry Kelley, Iowa State, 187-10.00
  • Hammer Throw (W): 1) Julia Reedy, Oklahoma, 200-02.00 13) Anna Holtermann, Iowa State, 176-08.00; 21) Kayla Sanborn, Iowa State, 159-05.00.
  • Discuss (M): 1) Gabe Hull, Iowa, 181-02.00; 23) Taylor Sanderson, Iowa State, 136-07.00.
  • High Jump (M): 1) Bryan McBride, Arizona State, 7-02.00; T6) Jalen Ford, Iowa State, 6-08.00
  • Shot Put (M): Ryan Whiting, Nike, 68-08.00; 3) Jan Jeuschede, Iowa State, 58-10.25.
  • Long Jump (W): 1) Kennadi Washington, 19-05.5; 2) Jhoanmy Luque, Iowa State, 19-05.5.
  • High Jump (W): 1) Megan Glisar, South Dakota, 6-00.00; 2)Marine Vallet, Iowa State, 5-11.00; 4) Katie Reeves, Iowa State, 5-07.5; 8) Hannah Willms, Iowa State, 5-03.5.
  • Triple Jump (W): 1) Jhoanmny Luque, Iowa State, 41-02.25.
  • 110-m H (M): 1) Aaron Mallet, Iowa, 13.85; 3) Logan Schneider, Iowa State, 14.66; 4) Taylor Sanderson, Iowa State, 14.67.
  • 100m H (W): 1) Kimberly Stueckle, Washington, 13.55; 7) Kaci Storm, Iowa State, 14.60.
  • 100m (M): 1) Jamol James, Arizona State, 10.47; 15) Jared Ingram, Iowa State, 10.92.
  • 4x100m relay (M): 1) Texas A&M, 38.98; 7) Iowa State, 41.95.
  • 400m H (M): 1) Aikan Graham, Texas A&M, 51.99; 2) Derek Jones, Iowa State, 52.22; 9) Kris Brander, Iowa State, 54.18; 13) Trey Achterhoff, Iowa State, 55.81.
  • 400m H (W): 1) Montayla Holder, Iowa, 58.59; 3) Alyssa Gonzalez, Iowa State, 1:00.93.
  • 200m (M): 1) James Harrington, Iowa, 20.98; 12) Jared Ingram, Iowa State, 21.94; 19) Logan Schneider, Iowa State, 22.31.
  • 200m (W): 1) Shamier Little, Texas A&M, 23.45; 20) Kaci Storm, Iowa State, 26.01.
  • 4x400m Relay (M): 1) Texas A&M, 3:06.67; 8) Iowa State, 3:17.8
Kevin Spejcher-Mt Vernon-Iowa ©Darren Miller

Hawks Show Up Early Outdoors

Kevin Spejcher-Mt Vernon-Iowa ©Darren Miller

Kevin Spejcher-Mt Vernon-Iowa ©Darren Miller

The University of Iowa track and field team captured five event titles during the final day of competition at the Baldy Castillo Invite in Tempe, Arizona on Saturday. The men’s team amassed a total of 63 points to finish fourth, while the women’s team (68 points) finished fifth, overall. The event was housed at the Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State.

“This was a great start to our outdoor season,” director of track and field Joey Woody said. “We challenged the athletes to go after performances that will make it to the NCAA first round, and we had a few individuals who lived up to that challenge.”

Courtesy Hawkeye Sports

One week removed from his sixth-place finish in the 60-meter hurdles at the NCAA Indoor Championships, sophomore Aaron Mallett returned to action Saturday in the men’s 110-meter hurdles. The St. Louis, Missouri, native posted a personal best 13.85, a time that ranks sixth on Iowa’s all-time list and will stand second in the national rankings, to win the event.

Junior James Harrington raced to the men’s 200-meter title, setting a personal best 20.98. His time would also rank second in the national standings.

Junior MonTayla Holder captured gold in the women’s 400-meter hurdles. The Indianapolis, Indiana, native topped the national leaderboard when she crossed the line in 58.59. Junior Mitch Wolff nabbed a fourth-place finish in the men’s race with a personal best 52.79.

Senior Gabe Hull also kicked off the outdoor season in winning style with a toss of 181-02 feet (55.22m) in the men’s discus throw. Junior Dakotah Goodell (157-01, 47.88m) contributed with an eighth-place finish in the women’s contest.

Freshman Jahisha Thomas claimed a runner-up finish in the women’s 100-meter hurdles. She clocked the sixth-fastest time in program history at 13.80.

Next on the track was the men’s 400-meter relay that featured sophomore Vinnie Saucer, Jr., junior Brendan Thompson, Harrington, and Mallett. The quartet posted a runner-up finish in 40.07.

Holder, sophomore Elexis Guster, junior Lake Kwaza, and sophomore Brittany Brown comprised the women’s 400-meter relay that clocked the third-fastest time in the field at 45.42.

Kwaza returned to the track for the 400 meters when she earned a second-place finish in 56.27. Freshman Sheridan Champe (57.65) rounded out the event scoring with an eighth-place finish, overall. Thompson led Iowa in the men’s race (9th; 48.68).

Junior Kassidy Ellis upped her personal best mark in the women’s long jump to gather a fourth-place finish, respectively. Her mark of 18-09.00 feet (5.71m) lands ninth in school history.

Returning to the track, the Hawkeyes received a pair of fifth-place finishes from freshman Carter Lilly (1:50.87) and sophomore Katharina Trost (2:10.26) in the 800 meters.

Sophomore Vinnie Saucer, Jr. and junior Kerry Dean, Jr. grabbed sixth-place finishes and notched collegiate-best performances in their respective events. Saucer clocked 10.66 in the men’s 100 meters, while Dean jumped 23-08.00 feet (7.21m) in the men’s long jump.

Junior Kevin Spejcher also earned a sixth-place finish when he cleared 6-08.00 feet (2.03m) in the men’s high jump, while sophomore Madison Rouw (5-05.25, 1.66m) finished seventh in the women’s competition.

Junior Sam Joens collected an 11th-place finish in the men’s javelin, while Goodell (145-05, 44.32m) and freshman Kayla Hochhalter (42.98m, 141-00) finished 10th and 13th, respectively, for the women.

The meet concluded with the 1,600-meter relays. The quartet of Wolff, Thompson, Harrington, and Lilly (3:11.57) logged a third-place finish, overall, while the women’s team of Guster, Brown, Holder, and Kwaza took the title in 3:40.31.

“We had a number of personal bests today,” Woody said. “It was great to see James win the 200 meters and finally break the 21-second barrier for the first time in his collegiate career. MonTayla and Mitch both had great opening times in the 400-meter hurdles and ran great relay splits in the 1,600-meter relay. I was also pleased to see Dakotah perform near her PR in the javelin. We are excited to have the next two weeks to train and build on this great start.”

Iowa will split competitors for the Florida Relays in Gainesville, Florida, and the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, California, from April 3-4.


Black Hills State’s Baldwin nets two more Honors

Alec Baldwin-Spirit Lake-Black Hills St ©Black Hills St Athletics

Alec Baldwin-Spirit Lake-Black Hills St
©Black Hills St Athletics

The Black Hills State University track and field team picked up two more All-American honors Saturday at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship in Birmingham, Alabama.

Alec Baldwin placed fifth in the mile run in 4:11.12. The junior broke the school record on Friday in the preliminary round, and with his efforts Saturday became the first individual to earn All-America in indoor track and field during the NCAA Division II era at BHSU.

Baldwin was quickly joined on the All-American list as Mitch Kraft placed eighth in the 3,000-meter run in 8:12.48. That time crushed the his previous school record by 9.9 seconds. The senior also earned All-America honors during the 2013 cross country season.

Madison McLaughlin, competing in her first indoor championship, fouled on all three of her attempts in the shot put.

The Yellow Jackets closed out the meet with three All-American honors as the distance medley relay team claimed fifth place on Friday night.

Black Hills State begins the outdoor track and field season on March 26-28 at the Yellow Jacket Spring Open in Spearfish.

Houlihan: Double All-American

Shelby Houlihan-SC East-ASU ©Sun Devil Athletics

Shelby Houlihan-SC East-ASU
©Sun Devil Athletics

The Arizona State track and field teams wrapped the final day of competition at the 2015 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships on Saturday at the Randal Tyson Track Center with a national runner-up in the mile in senior Shelby Houlihan.

Courtesy Sun Devil Athletics / Cover Photo ©Sun Devil Athletics

A native of Sioux City, Iowa, Houlihan ran 4:82.71, knocking two seconds off her previous school record of 4:30.77, which she ran a month ago at the 2015 NYRR Millrose Games in New York. Her finish was also faster than the previous meet record, set by Tennessee’s Sarah Bowman at 4:29.72 in 2009.


“Our women finished inside the top-25, because we got big points from Shelby Houlihan,” Director of Track and Field Greg Kraft said. “It was really a very brave effort from her today, running the fifth-fastest time in the mile ever, the fastest non-winning time in NCAA history in the mile, and then showed a lot of courage with the short turn-around running the 9:09 in the 3000m and getting us one more point. That’s really enormous.”


Houlihan also earned All-America honors in the 3000m run finals, finishing in eighth at 9:09.61, and bringing her career total of All-America accolades to 10. Five such honors have come in indoor competition.


This also marks the first time a Sun Devil woman earned two first-team All-America honors since Sarah Stevens accomplished the feat in the shot put and weight throw in 2009.



ASU finished with 11 team points, placing in a tie for 21st, while the men finished with six points for 31st. The Arkansas women won the team tile with 63 points, while Oregon defended its men’s title with 74 points.



Up next, the Sun Devils will open the 2015 outdoor and home slate, hosting the Baldy Castillo Invitational on March 20-21 at Sun Angel Stadium.



Distance Coach Louie Quintana

“Shelby was great today. The mile was a terrific race, her time was the second-fastest time ever run at the NCAA Championships. She did everything she could, ran a two second personal best and when you do that and still get beat, hats off to Leah O’Connor from Michigan State, who ran a great race, set the meet record, which is what she had to do to beat Shelby today. For Shelby to come back and score in the 3000m was really a tremendous, gutsy performance. It’s something that I hope our group at home sees and really kind of takes to heart, what she did her in a two-hour span in probably the greatest NCAA women’s distance championships in history. It was an impressive performance for her and is a testament to who she is as a person and as an athlete. With what she’s meant to this program, it’s going to be tough to see her go.”


Ten-Time All-American Senior Shelby Houlihan

“I was really happy with how I did in both the mile and the 3000m. Coming in second and PR-ing by two seconds was awesome. I feel like I gave it everything I had in the mile and then everything I had in the 3000m. I just tried to get that last eighth place so I could get that first-team All-America honor, and I’m just really proud of myself.”


Arizona State Results

Women’s Team Placement

21. ASU – 11 points



Women’s Mile Finals

  • 2. Shelby Houlihan – 4:28.71 (NCAA Runner-Up) (PR, School Record, All-American)

Women’s 3000m Run Finals

  • 8. Shelby Houlihan – 9:09.61 (All-American)

D1 and D2 Indoor Nationals Preview

Jessica Janeck-Dubuque Wahlert-Grand Valley State

Jessica Janeck-Dubuque Wahlert-Grand Valley State

The state of Iowa will be well represented at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville this weekend.

  • Arizona State-Shelby Houlihan (SC East) will be in Heat 1, lane 7 in the Mile prelims on Fiday at 6:00 PM
  • Shelby will run the 3K final on Saturday at 8:00 PM
  • UNI-Sebastian Barth will be in Heat 1, lane 8 in the 60HH prelims on Friday at 6:45 PM
  • Iowa-Aaron Mallett will be in Heat 1, lane 4 in the 60HH prelims on Friday at 6:45 PM
  • Kevin Lewis (Ottumwa) will be in the 5,000M finals on Friday at 8:45 PM.
  •  Iowa State-Edward Kemboi will be in Heat 2, lane 4 in the 800M prelims on Friday at 7:55 PM.
  • The Cyclones will be in the Men’s DMR on Friday at 9:20 PM.
  • Katie Moen (Wapsie Valley Fairbank) will run the 3k final on Saturday at 8:00 PM
  • Arkansas-Former Iowa Central CC national champion Stanley Kebenei will run the 3K final on Saturday at 8:15 PM

Complete D1 meet info Click Here!  


  • Black Hills State-Alec Baldwin (Spirit Lake Park) will be in Heat 2, lane 4 in the Mile prelims on Friday at 4:45 PM
  • Baldwin will be on the DMR at 7:50 PM on Friday
  •  Grand Valley State-Jessica Janecke (Dubuque Wahlert) will be in 5k final on Friday at 7:10 PM
  • Augustana SD-Paul Yak (Storm Lake St Mary’s) will be in the 5K final on Friday at 7:10 PM
  • Leah Seivert (Sibley Ocheyden) will be in the 5k final on Friday at 6:45 PM and the 3k final at 5:40 PM on Saturday

Results Click Here!  





Complete D2 meet info is here:


Sebastian Barth-UNI ©Panther Athletics

UNI’s Barth Set For Nationals!

Sebastian Barth-UNI ©Panther Athletics

Sebastian Barth-UNI ©Panther Athletics

Senior hurdler Sebastian Barth will represent the University of Northern Iowa track and field program this week as he heads to Fayetteville, Ark. to compete at the 2015 NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships.

Courtesy Panther Athletics

Barth has had a standout year where he went undefeated in the 60 meter hurdles and turned in blazing times throughout the season. Barth’s school record time of 7.72 that he ran in January is tied for the second fastest time in the country this season.

“No question this has been a crazy season for Sebastian,” head coach Dan Steele said. “He’s worked incredibly hard to improve and has finally put things together technically.”

Barth will be one of just 16 athletes in the hurdles competing for a national title and the only one from the Missouri Valley Conference. The Gauting, Germany native is a three-time All-Conference honoree and a three-time NCAA West Regional qualifier in outdoors and is hungry for a chance at the championship.

According to a NCAA Championships preview by FloTrack, Barth has been named a contender for the title after “throwing down a scary fast time at the UNI Team Invite back in January.” Unfortunately for Barth, he was unable to contend for the MVC title due to a minor injury that arose a few days before the meet.

“It killed him to miss the MVC meet because he is a team captain and wanted to be there for his teammates,” Steele said. “When you’re responsible for the career of an elite athlete, you have a responsibility to protect them and that sometimes means looking beyond conference championships. He looks sharp and healthy now and is clearly one of the best hurdlers in the country.”

Barth’s road to the championship will begin Friday, March 13 with the men’s 60 meter hurdle semifinal. The race will begin at 6:45 p.m. with live results being available here. A full recap and set of results can also be found at following the completion of the race.