Iowa women’s track looks to improve on ranking

The Hawkeyes are set to compete in another home meet – an ample opportunity to move up in the polls.


Anthony Vazquez

Iowa’s Tia Saunders takes the baton from her teammate during the 18th annual Musco Twilight in Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track in Iowa City, Iowa on Saturday, April 22, 2017.

Sydney Becker, Sports Reporter

The Iowa women’s track and field team ranks 37th in the country and will work to improve on that mark at the Wieczorek Invitational today and Saturday in the Rec Building.

The Hawkeyes will compete in their third home meet of the season with the Wieczorek Invitational. With No. 15 Baylor and No. 34 Wisconsin among the teams this weekend, the women’s team has room to work their way up in the rankings.

“It’s always good to be ranked — we expect to be one of the top 10 to 15 teams in the country, so we still have a lot of work to do,” Iowa Director of Track and Field Joey Woody said. “There are still some Big Ten teams ahead of us. At the end of the day, I know that we have some talented girls who are going to step up here in these next few weeks and help improve and build on our rankings.”

Rankings in field events come into action.

Ben Allen Smith
Iowa head coach Joey Woody holds the trophy for first place after the 2018 Drake Relays at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa on Saturday, April 28, 2018. Iowa placed first in the meet.

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Starting the meet, Laulauga Tausaga will compete against Minnesota’s Kaitlyn Long, the 2018 Big Ten weight throw champion.

Tausaga recently reached No. 12 in rankings after a 20.6- meter throw at the Hawkeye Invitational last weekend.

“Being able to get started with the weight throw is always a big event for us now,” Woody said. It’s become a strong event for us just recently. [Tausaga] has her mind set on hitting another school record, not only on that but also the shot put this weekend. She’s a tremendous competitor, but there’s some great talent in that field.”

Woody is excited about the competition that will come this weekend, because the field athletes have worked and improved as the season has progressed.

A friendly reunion

Senior Briana Guillory competed in the 1,600-meter relay for Team USA at the North America, Central America, and Caribbean Championships last year.

Working with athletes from Tulane, Baylor, and Texas, the squad took the gold medal (3:26.08). Guillory will be greeted this weekend by former teammate Kiana Horton of Baylor as they compete for titles for their schools.