Iowa Debuts at Hawkeye Invitational

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa track and field team opened the 2018 indoor season with 11 event titles, 12 personal records, and two all-time top 10 marks at the Hawkeye Invitational on Saturday at the UI Recreation Building.


The meet was highlighted with impressive debuts by freshmen Kyara Avant and Bradford Garron.


Avant placed second in the 60 meter dash and entered Iowa’s all-time top 10 with a time of 7.51 seconds in the preliminary round, while Garron defeated All-Americans Collin Hofacker and DeJuan Frye in the final leg of the men’s 4x400 meter relay.


“It was different for me to compete with other people than my teammates, but that was exciting,” Avant said. “It’s very frightening (to compete at this level), but you have to get through it and put your fears on the track.”



“It’s good to see what people were doing over winter break and making sure they were training at a good level and coming back fit,” UI director of track and field Joey Woody said. “Brad (Garron) is a guy that did a lot of great work over break. It is a happy moment when you get a chance to have a freshman come in and potentially make our All-American 4x4 and right now he is looking phenomenal. It’s always good for those freshmen to make a statement right away. Briana (Guillory) and Mar’yea (Harris) had good starts to their 4x4 races and that’s all they had to worry about today. We still have athletes we didn’t have compete to get them ready for next weekend so we are excited how that meet will go.”



Senior Kevin Docherty returned to action for his final indoor season and set a new personal best in the men’s 1,000 meters. He finished with a time of 2:27.90.


“Ive been training all fall and I wanted to come here and have some speed work,” Docherty said. “Today was a good checkpoint. One of the guys that I beat is a 4:04 guy, so I am right on track with my training.


Freshman Aly Weum’s debut ended with an event title in the 400 meters. Weum’s 57.33 was good enough to beat a slew of Hawkeyes behind her, including sophomores Talia Buss, Mallory King, and freshmen Kylie Morken and Addie Swanson. Iowa swept the top five in the event.


Sophomore Nate Mylenek set a meet record in the men’s mile with a time of 4:10.08 as he earned the event title. Senior Michael Melchert placed second in the event (4:11.54).


The women’s 4x400 meter team of juniors Briana Guillory, and Sarah Plock, Weum, and sophomore Tashee Hargrave set a facility record in the event. They recorded a time of 3:41.34.



Junior Reno Tuufuli took first in the men’s shot put with a mark of 18.56 meters. That mark places him 11th in the country entering the meet.


 “It was a seamless change in coaches,” Tuufuli said. “I trusted and believed what he (Coach Werskey) brought to the table and I’ve been working on what he’s wanted me to work on and it’s been working out.”


Sophomore Laulauga Tausaga finished runner-up in the women’s shot put, but moved up the Iowa leaderboards, improving to third in Iowa history with a mark of 15.00 meters.



17 Hawkeyes made their Iowa debut on Saturday.



·         Iowa took the top five spots in the women’s high jump

·         Freshmen Cole Moeller and Jay Hunt tied for third in the high jump

·         Freshman Raymonte Dow finished second overall in the men’s 400 meters with a time of 48.96.



Sheridan Champe: 200 Meters, 24.20

Taylor Arco: 400 Meters, 59.36

Andrea Shine: Mile, 4:55.5

Lauglauga Tausaga: Shot Put, 15.00 Meters

Antonio Woodard: 60 Meters, 6.85

Anthony Williams: 60 Meter Hurdles, 8:11

Gage Eller: 200 Meters, 22.40

Chris Thompson: 200 Meters, 22.34

Carter Lilly: 400 Meters, 48.66

Kevin Docherty: 1,000 Meters, 2:27.90

Nate Mylenek: Mile, 4:10

Ian Eklin: Mile, 4:14



The Hawkeyes return to the track hosting the Larry Wieczorek Invitational on Jan. 19-20 at the UI Rec Building. Admission is free.

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