The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Iowa cross country notebook | Redbird Invite recap, Joe Piane Invite preview

A small group of Iowa mid-distance cross country runners represented the Hawkeyes at the Redbird Invite. Now, both men’s and women’s distance programs look ahead to a competition hosted by Notre Dame on Sept. 29.
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Kathy Le
Iowa women’s cross country team stretches during a practice at the Hawkeye Indoor Track Facility in Iowa City on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023.

The Iowa women’s cross country program sent a few mid-distance specialists to the Redbird Invite in Normal, Illinois, on Sept. 15.

Senior Alli Bookin-Nosbisch was the first Hawkeye to cross the line, running a time of 22:41.8. This race earned Bookin-Nosbisch a new personal record in the 6,000-meter race and a 19th-place individual finish.

“I was pretty happy with my [personal record],” Bookin-Nosbisch said. “It was my second time ever running a [6,000-meter race], so I was hoping to see the time drop a little bit. I hope to see my time drop even more if I run more [6,000-meter races].”

Bookin-Nosbisch excels on the track, as she holds two school records at the University of Iowa. She boasts the top time for the indoor 800-meter race and indoor distance medley relay.

Fellow teammates fourth-year Clare Pitcher and first-year Ava Rush both made their 6,000-meter debut at the Redbird Invite. Pitcher and Rush finished with times of 25:12.6 and 25:29.3, respectively.

Bookin-Nosbisch was proud of her mid-distance teammates for holding their own against stiff distance competitors.

“Since we are mid-distance runners, it’s not really our [best] event,” Bookin-Nosbisch recalled. “These girls at the meet provided a lot of competition for us to go out and be challenged.

Since there were not five team members who finished the race, the Hawkeye women were not eligible for a team placement. Both Illinois State University men’s and women’s cross country programs took first place at their home meet with scores of 48 and 44, respectively.

Looking ahead

Next up, the typical lineup of distance men and women will return to competition at the Joe Piane Invitational hosted by Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, on Sept. 29.

According to Iowa cross country coach Randy Hasenbank, this meet will be influential in finalizing the men’s and women’s rosters as the teams head into the bulk of their competition season.

“We have to start to separate who we are going to be leaning on as we head into the postseason, so there are high expectations for everyone,” Hasenbank said.

The men’s and women’s distance squads are also looking to improve after their showings at the Badger Invitational on Sept. 9. At this meet, the men finished fifth out of six competing teams and the women placed sixth out of seven teams.

“We need to compete better than we did the last time out,” Hasenbank said. “I thought we got a little spread out on the course and didn’t run as well as a team on either side. We have to run better as a unit as we head into the postseason.”

The postseason will begin with the Big Ten Championship meet on Oct. 27.

The Joe Piane Invitational has always been a crucial piece to Iowa’s success as the team prepares for the conference championship due to the competitive environment, Hasenbank said.

“Notre Dame is one of the big meets that we circle on our calendar,” Hasenbank added. “It’s usually a pretty competitive situation. This will test us, and we will know whether or not we are ready, but we need to be ready.”

The competition is composed of many strong teams, including the host squad. The Notre Dame women’s team is the top-ranked team in the Great Lakes Region, while the men’s team is No. 2. The Notre Dame women also rank No. 4 nationally, and the men are ranked eighth.

Going into this meet, Hasenbank is looking forward to watching both programs’ training begin to pay off.

“We have high expectations,” Hasenbank said. “Very high expectations.”

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About the Contributors
Mia Boulton, Sports Reporter
she/her/hers
Mia Boulton is a freshman at the University of Iowa majoring in Journalism & Mass Communication, as well as exploring a possible double major in Sports Media. She works at the Daily Iowan as a sports reporter. Outside of the Daily Iowan, Mia has been a photographer for her hometown newspaper, The Record.
Kathy Le, Photojournalist
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Kathy Le is a fourth-year student at The University of Iowa majoring in 3D design and Art History. This is her first year working as a photojournalist of Daily Iowan.