Hawkeye Track and Field Earns Best NCAA Finish in Over 50 Years

By erut17 on June 15, 2021 at 3:04 pm
GO HAWKS GO
@IowaXC_TF (Twitter)
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The Hawkeye track and field team has had an extraordinary season. They've ranked in the Top 5 for multiple events throughout the year, set school records, and earned conference championships. Last weekend, they continued their successful season, competing at the NCAA Championships where multiple Hawks earned All-American honors and placed among the best in the country. It was a fitting exclamation point to an amazing season and very nearly ended with multiple national champions.

The Championships kicked off Wednesday with the men's field events and semifinals. The Hawks had three different finals qualifiers: Jaylan McConico and Jamal Britt both qualified in the 110 hurdles and the 4x400 relay team qualified for the finals as well. Iowa was the only school to qualify multiple runners to the 100 hurdle finals.

Other standout Wednesday performances included Will Daniels, who performed well in the first half of the decathlon and fellow Hawkeye Austin West, who was right there with him until he had to drop out with an injury. James Carter Jr. earned 2nd-team All American honors in the long jump with his 7.65-meter leap. He missed the finals by only three centimeters. The 4x100 relay of McConico, Woodard, Reed, and Kresley earned 2nd-team All American honors as well, with a 14th place 39.48 second time. Wayne Lawerence Jr. also earned 2nd-team All American honors, finishing 10th in the 400 meters. Two Hawkeyes earned Honorable Mention All-American honors: Jamal Britt in the 400 hurdles and Nathan Mylenek in the 3,000 meter steeplechase.

Thursday saw the Hawkeyes compete in the women's shot put and the final events in the men's decathlon. Laulauga Tausaga earned 1st-team All-American honors with a 6th place finish. It was the second 1st-team honor for Laulauga in the event. Kat Moody earned Honorable Mention All-American honors in the event as well with an 18th place finish. Will Daniels finished the Decathlon in 7th place to earn 1st-team All-American honors as well.

Iowa added three more All-American honors on Friday as the men's team finished their competition. The team finished in 12th place overall, scoring 22 points. The Hawks had their footprints all over the 110-meter hurdle finals. Jaylan McConico finished second in the nation (and may have been just a clipped hurdle from a national championship), while Jamal Britt finished fourth. Both runners earned 1st-team All-American honors, a worthy end to tremendous seasons.

The 4x400 team ran their season-best time in the national finals, finishing 5th in 3:02.54 seconds. The run earned the group 1st-team All-American honors and ranks 3rd all-time in Iowa history. Jenny Kimboro kicked off her competition in the heptathlon on Day 3 as well with strong performances in the event's first four competitions.

The final day of competition saw even more Hawkeye All-American honors for the women's team. Overall, the team finished 26th in the nation, scoring 11 points. Laulauga Tausaga led the way with a 2nd place finish in the discus. She led until an ASU thrower set a meet record on her final throw to claim the national title. Still, Tausaga earned her 7th career 1st-team All-American honor to cap off one of the best careers in the history of Iowa athletics.

 

Serena Brown finished 10th in the discus to earn 2nd-team All-American honors. Jenny Kimboro ended an accomplished Iowa career with an 18th place finish in the heptathlon, earning Honorable Mention All-American honors. 

While the Hawks surely wanted to bring home a National Championship or two, the tremendous success they had at the NCAA Championships is nothing to scoff at. Their 12th place finish this year was the program's best since 1967. Coach Joey Woody has built the team into a national powerhouse across multiple events and the multiple All-American honors earned across several events is proof that the work he and each of the athletes have put in is paying off. 

With the end of the collegiate season, many Hawkeyes will now turn their attention to the Olympic Trials, which take place from June 18th-27th. They'll face stiff competition from some of the best athletes in the world, but don't be shocked if you see a few familiar faces in some of the finals at the Trials. That's not just a homer fan talking either, some of these Hawkeyes absolutely have the talent to compete with the best.

Huge congratulations again to the entire Iowa Track and Field team on an amazing season and a great showing on the national stage. This team has cemented itself as one of the best in the country and will, without a doubt, be a force in the years to come. 

We can't wait to see what you do next. Go. Iowa. Awesome.

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