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)
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Larson and Vander Veer Lead Dutch

download (1)Central College men’s track and field distance runner Jamie Vander Veer (senior, Harvey, Knoxville HS) finished in sixth place in the mile to become an all-American at the NCAA Division III Indoor Championships Saturday.

The Dutch women finished in the top five in all three events they competed in Saturday. It is the first time in program history they have earned all-America honors in three different events at the indoor national meet.

Vander Veer earns all-America honors for Dutch men– After grabbing the last qualifying spot in the prelims Friday, Vander Veer raced to a sixth place finish in the men’s mile finals for all-America honors. His time (4:13.89) was less than a second off of his personal best.

“Jamie told me after the race he remembered me sitting in his high school counselor’s office telling him that I believed he could be an all-American,” said coach Joe Dunham. “I’ve always believed it and it’s very rewarding to see him get it.”

Sophomore Logan Mulford (Mount Pleasant) placed 15th in the high jump with a leap of 6 feet 6.25 inches.

In the heptathlon Eric Larson (senior, Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) entered the day tied for first after four events, but had to withdraw due to an injury that sidelined him nearly all of last season. He won the 2013 indoor heptathlon and outdoor decathlon national championships before missing most of last year.

Larson took eighth in the 60-meter hurdles (8.53) Saturday before failing to clear a height in the pole vault nd withdrawing from the 1,000 meters.

The Central men tied for 55th in the final team standings with three points. Wis.-Eau Claire took the men’s team title with 62 points, edging out Wis.-La Crosse by two.

Three top-five finishes propel Dutch women– Sprinter Abi Davis (junior, Des Moines, Dowling Catholic HS) followed up Friday’s strong performance with a pair of top-five finishes in the 60 and 200-meter finals. She took fourth in the 60 (7.67 seconds) and fifth in the 200 (25.27).

“Abi had a great day,” said Dunham. “She had a real good day yesterday and I think she stepped up even more today.”

It is the second year in a row Davis has run the 60 and the 200 at the indoor national meet. Last season she finished 15th in the 200 and runner-up in the 60.

The Dutch 4×400 relay squad of Davis, Kate Patton (freshman, Murray), Camie Kibbee (senior, Mason City) and Allie McBroom (senior, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) entered the meet with the 10th best qualifying time, but improved by four seconds, running a 3:51.34, to earn fourth place and all-America honors.

“The women’s relay team ran absolutely amazing today,” said Dunham. “I’m very proud of them. Each of them played a vital role in that performance. I give a lot of credit to coach Jon Graupmann for getting them ready.”

The Dutch women finished in a tie for 13th as a team with 14 points. Wis.-La Crosse won the women’s title with 55 points.

The Dutch will begin the outdoor season in two weeks at the Washington-St. Louis Invitational March 27 and the Northwest Missouri State Invitational March 28-29.

“I’m very proud of all the effort today,” said Dunham. “We had some great all-American performances and we will use these to get ready for the outdoor season.”

Central’s Davis Big 1st Dat at Nationals

abi Davis-Dowling Catholic-Central ©Jim Kirby

abi Davis-Dowling Catholic-Central
©Jim Kirby

Central College women’s track and field sprinter Abi Davis (junior, Des Moines, Dowling Catholic HS) advanced to the finals in two events at the NCAA Divison III Indoor Championships Friday.

On the men’s side Eric Larson (senior, Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) is tied for first in the men’s heptathlon at 3,001 points after four of seven events and Jamie Vander Veer (senior, Harvey, Knoxville HS) qualified for the finals in the mile.

Davis sprints to the finals – Davis had a big day for the Dutch, qualifying for the finals in both the 60 and the 200 meters. She tied for fourth in the 60 meter prelims (7.64) and qualified for Saturday’s finals. The race is scheduled for 2:15 CDT.

“I was really proud of Abi Davis,” said Dunham. “I felt like she overcame some things today and still prevailed. She had probably the worst start of the season in the 60 and she came back to get second in her heat. She ran a great time.”

Davis also took eighth in the 200 prelims (25.46) to earn the last qualifying spot in the finals. She will run at 3:05 p.m. Saturday.

In the prelims of the women’s 60-meter hurdles Meredith Zimmerman (senior, Urbandale) took 14th in the field of 17 in 9.02.

“I thought Meredith Zimmerman did a great job today,” said Dunham. “This was great experience for her. And while she didn’t make the finals, I think this was a great opportunity to get her ready for the outdoor season. I’m very proud of how she competed the last couple weeks.”

In addition to Davis in the 60 and the 200 ,the 4×400 relay team of Davis, Kate Patton (freshman, Murray), Camie Kibbee (senior, Mason City) and Allie McBroom (senior, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) will compete Saturday, running at 4 p.m. CDT.

Larson in the hunt – The two-time national champion is tied for first at 3,001 points in the men’s heptathlon. He won the long jump (22 feet 7,75 inches) and high jump (6-5.50), while placing sixth in the 60 meters (7.20 seconds) and fifth in the shot put (40-2.75).

“We knew Eric would be in a dog fight,” said coach Joe Dunham. “He’s got three events tomorrow, all of which are great events for him. He had a good first day.”

The heptathlon 60-meter hurdles, pole vault and 1,000 meters will take place Saturday starting at 10 a.m. CDT.

Central had two participants in the mile prelims. Vander Veer earned the last qualifying spot with a 10th place finish (4:15:57) and Eli Horton (senior, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) took 13th (4:17.58). Vander Veer will run in Saturday’s finals, which will start at 12:40 p.m. CDT.

“I was really proud of Jamie today,” said Dunham. “He ran a great mile in the prelims and now he’ll have an opportunity tomorrow to be an all-American. I thought he competed hard.”

Cole Decker (junior, Des Moines, Dowling Catholic HS) placed 11th in the 15-man 5,000-meter field (14:47.52).

“Cole had a good race today,” said Dunham. “He didn’t run as fast as he did last week, but it is hard to run two 5k’s fast two weeks in a row. He competed hard and was in the race the entire time. This race is a good indication that he will have a great 10k this outdoor season.”

The Dutch distance medley relay squad of Vander Veer, Spencer Hammack (junior, Ottumwa), Drew Jackson (senior, Johnston) and Horton placed 10th in 10:09.17.

“I felt like Spencer and Drew had great splits in the DMR,” said Dunham. “It was clear they were laying everything on the line for the team and that was great to see.”

In addition to Larson and Vander Veer, sophomore Logan Mulford (Mount Pleasant) will compete Saturday. He will take part in the high jump beginning at 1:30 p.m. CDT.

Wartburg Knights Indoor Nationals Day 1

Kendra Kregel-Maq.Valley-Wartburg ©Jim Kirby

Kendra Kregel-Maq.Valley-Wartburg
©Jim Kirby

Warburg at D3 Indoor Nationals After Day One.

Women Results So Far

  • 1 Melanie Brickner SR Wis.-Oshkosh 19.55m
  • 2 Whitney Simmons SO Texas-Tyler 18.31m
  • 3 Jecel Klotz SR Wis.-Oshkosh 17.73m
  • 4 Kayla Hemann SR Wartburg 17.63m
  • 5 Shelby Mahr SR Wis.-Whitewater 17.61m
  • 6 Kara Eck SO Trine 17.56m
  • 7 Nkemdilim Nwaokolo JR U. of Chicago 17.46m
  • 8 Becca McMullin SR Carthage 17.29m

Men Results So Far

  • 1 Sean Donnelly SR Mount Union 21.75m
  • 2 Pat Weinert SR Oneonta 20.47m
  • 3 John Dayton SR Springfield 20.31m
  • 4 Grant Havard SR Wis.-La Crosse 19.73m
  • 5 Sean Enos SR Bates 19.59m
  • 6 Luis Rivera JR Nazareth 19.29m
  • 7 J.D. Roth SR Oneonta 19.12m
  • 8 Eric Kennebrew SR Benedictine (Ill.) 18.64m
  • 9 Edward Cummins JR RIC 18.46m
  • 10 Tyler Williams SR Widener 17.92m
  • 11 Mike Recla SR Widener 17.74m
  • 12 Colt Feltes SR Wartburg 17.62m


Women Qualifiers Advancing to Finals

  • 1 Amy Viti JR Misericordia 2:11.82Q 1
  • 2 Cynthia Adams SR Lebanon Valley 2:12.78Q 2
  • 3 Kailyn Balzano JR Cortland St. 2:12.08Q 1
  • 4 Kylee Verhasselt SR Wis.-Oshkosh 2:12.79Q 2
  • 5 Taylor Moore SR Wartburg 2:12.22q 1
  • 6 Anna Murdock SR Franklin 2:12.87q 2
  • 7 Brittany Kozlowski SO St. Norbert 2:13.22q 1
  • 8 Rachael Shine SO Oneonta 2:13.34q 2


Men Qualifiers Advancing to Finals

  • 1 Ian McDonald SO Washington and Lee 4:14.03 Q
  • 2 Paul Escher JR St.Olaf 4:14.25 Q
  • 3 Colin Godwin FR MIT 4:14.59 Q
  • 4 Isaac Garcia-Cassani FR Geneseo St. 4:14.78 Q
  • 5 Roberto Lara FR Wis.-Oshkosh 4:14:87 Q
  • 6 Will Cross SR Elmhurst 4:15. 20 Q
  • 7 Joel Walden SR Wis.-Platteville 4:15.16 q
  • 8 John Stansel SR Bates 4:15.33 q
  • 9 Ryan Hermsen JR Wartburg 4:15.54 q
  • 10 Jamie Vander Veer SR Central College 4:15.57 q
  • Daniel Bonthius scratched in the 800m run due to injury.

For complete results Click Here!


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: http://www.ustfccca.org/weekly-results/national-championships-central-indoor-track-field#d2


How Runners Can Make Their Steps Matter by Morgan Casey

Steps_Competition_Teaser-527x670It was early in the fall of 2013, and I was sitting at home feeling sorry for myself. After five months without running, my hip was still fractured and my competitive running days were over. My dreams, my lifestyle, and my identity went to dust. I always knew eventually my competitive running days would be over, but I never thought it would happen the way it did. I had unfinished business. The ultimate goal wasn’t to leave my mark in the records set or titles won, but to hang up my spikes knowing I had used my sport to make a positive impact on someone else. But at that point, even putting a smile on my own face took a lot of effort. I needed something to pull me out of self-pity and back into a place of hope and meaning. I found my something in the Ryan and Sara Hall Steps Foundation.

The Steps Foundation doesn’t just offer hope to broken down athletes. Steps has built hospitals and maternity clinics in parts of Africa where medical care is scarce, Steps has built clean water wells in Mozambique, and invested in ministries both domestic and abroad. When hope fades and there is a population in need, Steps jumps in to fill that need.

FullSizeRenderEthiopia, home to some of the world’s greatest distance runners, is also home to some of the world’s most needy. Of its 86 million inhabitants, only 42 percent of them have access to a clean and safe water source. Tens of thousands of Ethiopians die each year of waterborne diseases; most of them are children. As I sit in my office sipping water from a nearby sink, Ethiopia’s water crisis puts an entirely new meaning to the phrase “The things you take for granted someone else is praying for.”

Ryan and Sara Hall are working to answer these prayers in a truly wonderful way. Turning their sport into something positive, the two professional runners started The Steps Foundation five years ago, and they have never looked back.

Now, Ryan and Sara are inviting all young runners to use their sport as a means of helping others and taking a Step toward helping those in desperate need. By participating in The Steps Foundation’s first ever team fundraising event, high school and college track teams can make their steps matter by logging miles to fight poverty and bring clean water to Ethiopia.

Water pic of girl carrying waterBecause runners tend to be a competitive bunch, this fundraising opportunity includes a little friendly competition. The high school or college team that raises the most money for the cause will receive a visit from the man himself, Olympian and American record holder, Ryan Hall!

The eight week competition kicks off when Ryan crosses the finish line at the LA Marathon on March 15th, and it’s never too late to join! Getting involved is as simple as sending an email to mystepsmatter@thestepsfoundation.org. Steps volunteers will create your team fundraising page, where each member of your team will gather sponsors and log miles. For more details on the fundraiser, visit the Steps Foundation website Click 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 www.UNIPanthers.com following the completion of the race.