Not a bad weekend to be a Hawkeye fan.
Check that, not a bad year to be a Hawkeye fan. We're in the midst of a Hawkeye athletic golden age. Don't take it for granted.
Track & Field
- The Iowa track and field team competed in the Big Ten Championships last weekend and, in case you somehow missed it up top, the men's team came away with their second straight Big Ten title, besting second place Ohio State 117-102. The women's team had a successful weekend of their own, sending 11 women to finals events.
- The Hawks wasted no time getting the party started with James Carter Jr. earning 2nd in the long jump on Day 1 and Nik Curtiss finishing 3rd in the shot put. Carter was the defending Big Ten champ and put up a strong performance, but was narrowly beat out in the end. In the 600-meter prelim, five different Hawkeye men qualified for the finals.
- Six Hawkeyes (two women, four men) qualified for the finals in the 200, three (two women, one man) qualified for the 60-meter finals and Iowa sent five Hawkeyes to the 60-meter hurdles finals (three women, two men). Other standout day one performances included Austin West leading the heptathlon, Nia Britt scoring points for the Hawks with a 5th place finish in the women's shot put, and Tionna Tobias finishing 4th in the women's pentathlon.
- Sunday was prime time for the Hawkeyes and the entire team showed up when it mattered most. Jenoah McKiver earned his first Big Ten title by taking the gold in the Men's 600m (1:15.67). A single title wasn't enough for McKiver, who came back to anchor the 1st place finishing 4x400 relay team alongside Everett Steward, Julien Gillum, and Armando Bryson. Eight other men medaled on a dominant day for the Hawkeyes, including Gillum in the 600m (3rd), Austin West in the Heptathlon (2nd), Grant Conway (2nd) and Gratt Reed (3rd) in the 60m Hurdles, Wayne Lawernce Jr. in the 400m (3rd), and Kalen Walker in the 60m (3rd).
Jenoah McKiver claimed the 600-meter @bigten title, followed by Spencer Gudgel (4th) & Armando Bryson (5th). Julien Gillum took from the first heat!#Hawkeyes | #FightForIowa pic.twitter.com/vtftpEZ4YZ— Iowa Track & Field/Cross Country (@IowaXC_TF) March 1, 2022
- On the women's side, LaSarah Hargrove earned two medals, finishing 2nd in the 200m race and 3rd in the 60m race. The Women's 4x400 team, made up of Mariel Bruxvoort, Payton Wensel, Mallory King, and Tesa Roberts also earned a bronze medal.
- You can hear Coach Woody talk about it in the tweet above, but the Hawkeyes scored in every event on the men's side in a true show of depth. The Hawks have been rewriting their own record books all season, pushing for the top national ranking in multiple events, and now they get the reward for all of their hard work. Coach Woody has built a perennial power in the Big Ten. The group is full of stars and can compete and win in every single event. They're getting contributions from standout underclassmen and battle-tested seniors and will no doubt have something to say on the national stage before the indoor season is over as well. Congratulations again to Coach Woody and the entire Hawkeye track & field team on your extraordinary achievement.
- The National Indoor Championships are scheduled for March 11th-12th. We can't wait to see what the Hawkeyes have in store.
- The Iowa gymnastics squad traveled to Minneapolis to take on #8 Minnesota last week, falling just short of the Gophers 196.375-198.025.
- Minnesota posted some incredible scores, making it nearly mpossible for Iowa to overcome them, but the Hawks still made it a productive weekend, laying down some quality performances of their own. Bridget Killian set a career-high on the vault, scoring 9.900 and finishing 2nd. JerQuavia Henderson posted a 9.900 of her own to tie for 2nd in the event.
- Lauren Guerin finished 2nd on the floor, scoring 9.925, while Clair Kaji and Adeline posted matching 9.925s to tie for 2nd on the beam. Both matched their season-high on the beam.
- The Hawks have gone up against some stiff competition the past two weeks, but have shown they can hang around with the best. They haven't quite been able to put together the full performance that takes them over the top, but the individual standout performances each week show the potential this team has. The Hawks, ranked 19th in the latest polls, will take on Iowa State next weekend.
- The Iowa softball team went 3-1 last week, notching wins over North Florida, Princeton, and Cornell. The lone loss came against Notre Dame.
- Against North Florida, Denali Loecker threw a complete game, allowing only a single run in the 7th. Sophia Maras drove in two runs and went 2-3 in the 3-1 win.
- Iowa faced Notre Dame later that same day, falling 2-0 in a hard-fought pitching duel. The Irish scored their only runs off of a two-run home run in the bottom of the 4th. The Hawks had the tying run in scoring position in the 7th, but were unable to drive either run home. Breanna Vasquez pitched a strong game outside of the one home run allowed, giving up only four hits.
- The Hawkeyes recovered from the loss quickly to beat Princeton on Saturday 4-1. They took an early lead thanks to a Sophia Maras infield single. Maras stole second, advanced to third on a fielder's choice, and then scored on a wild pitch. The Tigers tied it up in the 4th before Iowa brought home three runs in the 5th to take a lead they would not relinquish.
- Iowa's 9-0 win against Cornell on Sunday was a special one for coach Renee Gillispie, her 900th career victory. The Hawks scored early and often, putting up six runs in the first three innings. Loecker again was on the mound and put together another strong performance, in addition to driving in three runs of her own at the plate. Grace Banes and Nia Carter each drove in two runs to help the team earn the mercy-rule win. Earning 900 wins is a heck of an accomplishment and major congratulations are in order for coach Gillispie. She now ranks 19th among active coaches in wins and 38th all-time.
- Iowa baseball played three more games last week, going 1-2 after suffering a pair of heartbreaking losses.
- The squad got the weekend started on Friday with a 3-1 win over Pepperdine. Adam Mazur pitched 7 2/3 shutout innings and struck out nine. At the plate, Michael Seegers led the way, notching two hits and 2 RBIs.
- Iowa's next game was against Texas A&M - Corpus Christi, where the Hawks fell 2-1 in eleven innings. The Hawkeyes gave up a run in the first inning and then shut down the Islanders for the remainder of the nine innings. Brayden Frazier tied the game up in the 4th with an opposite-field home run and the Hawkeye bullpen gave up only one hit between the 6th and 10th innings. Unfortunately, the Hawks were unable to generate any more offense and gave up the winning run in the bottom of the 11th.
- The bats woke up in Iowa's next game against Witchita State, but Iowa ultimately fell 8-7. Peyton Williams had a great day at the dish with two doubles and two RBIs and the Hawkeyes only allowed seven hits, but nine Shocker walks proved too much to overcome, with Iowa allowing runs in every inning from the 2nd through the 7th. Iowa tried to rally late by scoring one in the 8th to cut the lead to 8-7 and putting two runners on in the ninth but was unable to complete the comeback.
- The Hawkeye baseball definitely has the pieces to compete in the Big Ten this year. The early season results show some of the ups and downs that come with both college athletics and baseball in general, but a few early losses shouldn't discourage anyone that was excited after the first weekend. Coach Heller has a good team and he's a good coach. By the end of the season, I'm confident we'll all be pleased with the final result.
- Iowa tennis traveled to Colorado last weekend for a pair of matches against Denver and then Colorado.
- Against Denver, the Hawks fought hard before ultimately falling, 4-3. Iowa took the early lead by securing the doubles point and also scored at the #2 spot with Samantha Mannix and the #6 spot with Barbara Pokorna. Samantha Gillis battled to the 3rd set on the #5 court before ultimately falling to her Denver opponent.
- Against Colorado, Iowa again fought hard for the doubles point, but ultimately fell in a tiebreak to the Buffaloes. Marisa Schmidt scored a point for the Hawks at the #1 spot, but Iowa wasn't able to score any other points on the day.
- The Hawkeye women's golf team took part in the Westbrook Invitational last week, finishing 14th.
- The highlight of the weekend came from junior Morgan Goldstein who shot an even 72, her best score of the season, during the final round. Goldstein birdied four holes in her round en route to an overall 52nd place finish.
- Freshman Paula Miranda continues to lead the Hawkeyes each week and finished tied for 23rd on the weekend. Her three-round score of 218 was her second-best of what has been a spectacular freshman season.