Olympic Roundup: 4/21

By erut17 on April 21, 2022 at 8:30 am
GO AUSTIN WEST AWESOME
@IowaXC_TF (Twitter)
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The Iowa track and field team has been rewriting the record books so often over these past few years that you'd be forgiven for thinking that doing so wasn't that big of a deal. In reality, though, it's quite the opposite. Iowa isn't exactly a blue blood when it comes to track and field, but that doesn't mean they haven't had their share of high performers. The fact that so many Top-10 times are coming week after week from the current athletes speaks to just how strong this group is, and just how good of a job Coach Woody is doing at building sustainable success.

Let's dive in.

Track and Field

  • Iowa started the week at the Mt. SAC relays. Austin West was the star of the event, blowing past the all-time best mark in the decathlon and notching the fourth-highest score in the world this year. West's 8,179 point outing was over 300 points better than Iowa's previous school record (7,864).
  • The decathlon is the ultimate combination of speed and strength and seeing an all-around performance as strong as West's is nothing short of incredible. West now ranks in the Top-25 for decathlon scores all-time in the NCAA. Like I said, these track and field Hawkeyes aren't just rewriting bad records.
  • West wasn't the only Hawkeye breaking records last weekend. Max Murphy broke a school record of his own, setting the all-time Iowa mark in the 1,500 meters (3:40.63) on Friday. 
  • Murphy and West's performances, in addition to McKiver's blistering run from two weeks ago, make three school records broken in recent memory. All of this in addition to a slew of other Top-10 times each week and a whole bunch of personal bests. I'm not sure how many more ways I can say this: Pay attention to this Iowa track and field team. They're headed nowhere but up.

Baseball

  • Iowa baseball had a great weekend last week, sweeping a three-game series against Minnesota. They won the opening game 9-3, earned a hard-fought 2-1 win in the second game, and then bookended the series with another 9-3 win to match the opener.
  • Game 1 looked like it was going to be a slugfest, but Iowa revoked Minnesota's invitation after the first inning. After both teams plated two runs in the first inning, the Hawkeyes shut down the Gophers for the rest of the day, while they continued to pile on. Starter Adam Mazur struck out eleven, while Keaton Anthony and Peyton Williams continued their hot streaks, each homering in the 9-3 win. Iowa's bullpen had been shaky the week before, but Mazur avoided that issue altogether with a dominant eight-inning outing to start the weekend on the right foot for the Hawks.
  • Game 2 was perhaps the most encouraging win of the weekend. The Hawks fought back from an early 1-0 deficit and the pitching locked down the Gophers again to secure the win. 5th inning RBIs by Izaya Fullard and Ben Tallman proved to be the difference, along with strong relief outings from Ben Beutel (2.1 scoreless innings) and Duncan Davitt (2 scoreless innings). The Iowa offense has looked good for most of the year but seeing Iowa win a pitcher's duel with manufactured runs and strong pitching is a great sign for the future. It's only one game, but it was the type of game that gives the whole team confidence moving forward.
  • Game 3 was another good win for the Hawkeyes. If there was one negative from the weekend, it was the early runs allowed and that came up again Sunday with the Gophers plating a run in each of the first three innings. The Hawkeye bats were quiet for most of the afternoon but exploded for a monster 8-run 7th inning that blew the game wide open. The Hawks notched seven hits in the inning, including a two-run double from Will Mulflur and a two-run single from Ben Wilmes. The Iowa bullpen again strung together scoreless frames, this time from Benjamin DeTaeye (2 scoreless) and Dylan Nedved (4 scoreless).
  • Keaton Anthony's big week earned him yet another Big Ten Freshman of the Week Award.
  • There are a few nitpicks if you really want to look, but the weekend sweep is an absolute success and a great bounce-back from a tough series against the Illini. The Hawkeyes continue to show that they have the pieces to compete in the Big Ten and it's a matter of consistency to reach their season goals. They'll be squarely in the postseason discussion barring a late-season collapse.

Rowing

  • Iowa racked up three wins at the Big Ten Invitational regatta last week. Iowa's #1 Varsity eight crew, as well as their #1 Varsity four and #3 Varsity four crews, took home the win on the weekend. 
  • The Eight crew bested 2nd place Notre Dame by almost five seconds, the #1 four crew beat Dartmouth by a second and the #3 four crew won their race in 7:32.006. 
  • Iowa's strong performance earned them Big Ten Boat of the Week honors.
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