College track season is nearly over, sadly enough. Just two events remain for the Hawkeyes: this weekend’s NCAA West Regional in Austin, Texas and the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Oregon.
There are, however, a few stipulations in order to visit the Ducks in their home pond. That’s where the West Regional comes in. In individual running events such as the 100m or the 200m dash, there are six heats. The top three from each of those heats is put in another set of races, where the top three of those plus the next three best times head to Eugene.
The process is similar for the rest of qualifications, though the numbers of heats and number of athletes taken varies a bit. The two relay events — 4x100 and the 4x400 — run just three heats, taking the top three with no finals. Field events are bit different and just take the top-12 best marks.
It’s a cool way to do qualification and if you’d like to see the startlists of everyone involved and the different NCAA Championship qualification guidelines, FloTrack has it all right here.
Iowa has a pretty good chance at advancing a number of events. Aaron Mallett (110M Hurdles) and Brittany Brown (200m dash), should be shoe-ins, as should Reno Tuffuli and Laulauga Tausaga, two of the best discus throwers in the nation.
The men’s 4x100 and 4x400 relays are both fast and the women’s 4x400 has a solid chance of making the field too. The men’s 400m dash lineup includes sophomore Mar’yea Harris as well as the freshman duo of Collin Hofacker and Emmanuel Ogwo.
Harris is the fastest of the bunch and it would sort of surprise me if he doesn’t make the cut. His time of 45.70 is 22nd in the nation and he’s just been getting better as the season goes on. Hofacker, Harris and Ogwo are part of the aforementioned normal 4x400 relay (along with DeJuan Frye) and, well, that just bodes well for the Hawkeyes.
Elsewhere in the sprints, O’Shea Wilson and Christian Brissett are both contenders in the 100 and 200, respectively, but they’ll need to have really, really good times in order to advance.
Wilson is in a heat with Northern Iowa’s Brandon Carnes, who ran a 9.97 in the Missouri Valley track Championships. Fairly sure him finding that out led to this great tweet.
In summer track I was never in the hot heat...put me in the last couple heats so I can look good— SoHo (@OSheaLeRon) May 22, 2017
O’Shea has a good sense of humor.
The women’s 400m dash will be interesting as well. Alexis Hernandez and Briana Guillory are both solid athletes and have a shot, but there’s a little extra storyline. Former Hawkeye and multiple-time Big Ten Champion and NCAA All-American Elexis Guster, who now runs for Oregon and has the third-best qualifying time in the regional, will be in the same heat as Hernandez and Guillory.
Should be fun to watch. Guster is uber-talented and having a great senior year for the Ducks. Speaking of viewing, you can stream the event at texassports.com/watch and I would strongly suggest following the Iowa Track and Field Twitter account @IowaXC_TF. They do a great job of getting results and putting things into context (along with some nifty graphics!).
Barring a minor miracle, Iowa won’t compete really for any type of team title at the NCAA Championships, but pushing through a good number of individual events is a real possibility.
Here are your individual qualifiers with their season-best times or marks. The individual starter lists for the 4x100 relay and 4x400 relays aren’t posted, but both the men’s and women’s squads will race in both events, though I omitted them from the list because while I have a pretty good idea of the combinations head coach Joey Woody will use, I’m not 100-percent on it.
O’Shea Wilson, 10.35
Men’s 110m hurdles
Aaron Mallett, 13.47 (fastest time in the regional)
Christian Brissett, 20.75
Brittany Brown, 22.30 (second-fastest time in the regional)
Mar’yea Harris, 45.70; Collin Hofacker, 46.70; Emmanuel Ogwo, 46.46
Alexis Hernandez, 53.27; Briana Guillory, 52.89
Men’s 400m hurdles
Noah Larrison, 51.02; Mitch Wolff, 51.55
Will Teubel, 1:49.24; Carter Lilly, 1:47.51
Adam Jones, 3:45.48
Andrea Shine, 34:49.55
Nathan Mylenek, 8:56.78
Marta Bote Gonzalez, 10:25.98
Men’s long jump
O’Shea Wilson, 7.51m
Women’s long jump
Jahisha Thomas, 6.32m
Men’s triple jump
Antwon James, 15.90m
Men’s shot put
Reno Tuufuli, 18.84m; Avery Meyers, 18.39m
Reno Tuufuli, 61.19m (second-best mark in the region); Avery Meyers, 55.65m
Laulauga Tausaga, 56.10m