Iowa track’s Woody, Tausaga earn Big Ten awards

Joey Woody and Laulauga Tausaga earned impressive recognition from the conference following the Big Ten Outdoor Championships.


The Daily Iowan; Photos by Ben A

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.

Robert Read, Sports Reporter

The recognition just keeps on coming for Iowa track and field.

After an eventful conference meet hosted right in its back yard, Iowa earned two more awards it can put up on the shelf right by the Big Ten Championships trophy.

Hawkeye Director of Track and Field Joey Woody was named Big Ten Coach of the Year and junior Laulauga Tausaga was named Field Athlete of the Big Ten Championships by the conference on Wednesday.

Woody, who has held his position since 2014, earned the honor after leading the Iowa men to their first Big Ten Championship since 2011. The women came in third place, tied for their best finish in program history.

Three individuals and one relay team earned conference titles between the two teams.

Tausaga won her third-career Big Ten title and her second in the discus to earn the conference honor. Her very first throw in the discus (60.28 meters) was a new facility record, and the mark stood throughout the competition to earn gold.

Tausaga also placed third in the shot put (17.17) and seventh in the hammer (60.91) to put up a combined 18 points toward the women’s total.

Also bringing home hardware from Big Ten weekend are Chris Douglas and Jenny Kimbro, both of whom earned sportsmanship awards.

Douglas put up a personal-best time of 50.32 to win the 400-meter hurdles in an upset. He would also finish fifth in the 110-meter hurdles (13.93), pushing his weekend point total to 14.

Kimbro had a busy weekend for Iowa, competing in the 100-meter hurdles, 400-meter-hurdles, and the heptathlon. She put up two second-place finishes in the 100-meter hurdles (13.38) and heptathlon (5,501), and she placed fifth in the 400-meter hurdles.

Kimbro accounted for 22 of the women’s 93 total points.

The next stop for Iowa will be Sacramento, California, where it will compete at the NCAA West Regionals on May 23-25.

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