Iowa women’s track takes on the final meet of indoor regular season

Individuals looking to hit marks for Big Ten Championships will participate in final meet of the indoor regular season at Notre Dame.

From+left%3A+Iowa%27s+Tria+Seawater-Simmons%2C+Minnesota+State%27s+Alexis+Smith%2C+and+Iowa%27s+Jenny+Kimbro+compete+in+the+women%27s+100+meter+hurdles+during+the+19th+annual+Musco+Twilight+meet+at+the+Francis+X.+Cretzmeyer+Track+in+Iowa+City+on+Thursday%2C+April+12.+Kimbro+finished+first+with+the+time+of+13.77.+
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Iowa women’s track takes on the final meet of indoor regular season

From left: Iowa's Tria Seawater-Simmons, Minnesota State's Alexis Smith, and Iowa's Jenny Kimbro compete in the women's 100 meter hurdles during the 19th annual Musco Twilight meet at the Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track in Iowa City on Thursday, April 12. Kimbro finished first with the time of 13.77.

From left: Iowa's Tria Seawater-Simmons, Minnesota State's Alexis Smith, and Iowa's Jenny Kimbro compete in the women's 100 meter hurdles during the 19th annual Musco Twilight meet at the Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track in Iowa City on Thursday, April 12. Kimbro finished first with the time of 13.77.

Ben Allan Smith

From left: Iowa's Tria Seawater-Simmons, Minnesota State's Alexis Smith, and Iowa's Jenny Kimbro compete in the women's 100 meter hurdles during the 19th annual Musco Twilight meet at the Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track in Iowa City on Thursday, April 12. Kimbro finished first with the time of 13.77.

Ben Allan Smith

Ben Allan Smith

From left: Iowa's Tria Seawater-Simmons, Minnesota State's Alexis Smith, and Iowa's Jenny Kimbro compete in the women's 100 meter hurdles during the 19th annual Musco Twilight meet at the Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track in Iowa City on Thursday, April 12. Kimbro finished first with the time of 13.77.

Sydney Becker, Sports Reporter

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Iowa women’s track will compete in the Alex Wilson Invitational hosted by Notre Dame on Feb. 16 for individuals who have yet to register times to compete in the Big Ten Indoor Championships a week later.

In Week 4 of the national rankings, the women’s team sits at No. 18 after hitting the highest ranking in program history last week at No. 15. This is only the third time in the past decade that the women’s team has ranked in the top 20.

“It’s good timing,” Director of Track and Field Joey Woody said. “We’re heading into our championship season, so it’s good to see that.”

Tria Simmons has a first-place rank in the pentathlon with 4,220 points along with second place in the high jump (1.78 meters). Laulauga Tausaga has No. 2 in the weight throw (23.26) along with No. 5 in the shot put (16.70).

Jenny Kimbro sits in second place for the 60-meter hurdles (8.27) and third place in the pentathlon (4,123 points). Briana Guillory has two spots in the rankings: No. 2 in the 400 (52.67) and fourth in the 600 (1:30.92).

Ben Smith
Iowa Director of Track and Field Joey Woody talks with reporters after the annual Black and Gold Intrasquad Meet at the Iowa Rec Building on Dec. 9, 2017.

Amanda Carty has third in the long jump (6.16) and the triple jump (12.84). Other athletes in the top five include Aubrianna Lantrip in fifth for the high jump (1.76) and the 1,600-meter relay that includes Kimbro, Aly Weum, Simmons, and Payton Wensel in No. 3 (3:37.94).

Tausaga was named the Big Ten Athlete of the Week on Feb. 6 after the Sevigne Invitational.

The women’s team currently has 11 athletes in the top five of the Big Ten.

RELATED: Iowa track’s Kimbro rises to the competition

After breaking numerous school records in the shot put and the weight throw, Tausaga was also named the Most Valuable Performer at the Sevigne Invitational. Placing at the top at the Big Ten Championships has been a goal of hers for the season, and she has prepared for the competition the best she can.

“[Breaking numerous records this season] definitely gives me the confidence to be able to say that I am one of the top girls, and I am able to score points for the team.” Tausaga said.

Following in her path for success, Kimbro has also prepared for the trip to the Big Ten Championships. Kimbro has the No. 2 all-time spot in both the pentathlon (4,123 points) and the 60-meter hurdles (8.27). Her training partner, Simmons, has the No. 1 all-time spot in the pentathlon with 4,220 points.

“[Simmons and I] are really excited to touch on the things that we can improve on at practice.” Kimbro said. “That’s getting us really excited, just knowing that there’s still room for improvement.”

After the Wilson Invitational, the team will head to Ann Arbor, Michigan, for the Big Ten Indoor Championships Feb. 22-23. Then the some of the top Hawkeyes will hit the road to Birmingham, Alabama, to compete in the NCAA Indoor Championships.

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