Women break records at Iowa State Classic


Redshirt senior Betsy Saina takes first place in 5,000-meter at the Iowa State Classic at the Lied Recreation Athletic Center on Feb. 9. Saina shattered the previous record of 15:29 with a time of 15:21.66, finishing almost four seconds in front of the second-place runner.

Isaac Copley

The ISU women’s track team cruised through the Iowa State Classic on Sunday, breaking two school records in the process.

Betsy Saina broke the record in the indoor 5,000-meter run with a time of 15:21.66 seconds, shattering the previous record of 15.29.65 set by Lisa Uhl in 2010. Saina, a redshirt senior from Kenya, also holds the third-best time in school history.

“It feels great,” Saina said of breaking the record. “It’s exciting and breaking that record is a great way to help me develop strategies to train for nationals and the Big 12 Conference. A result like this helps me to stay loose and be relaxed when everyone is watching especially at nationals.”

Saina, who was the national champion in the 5,000-meter run in last year’s outdoor season, bested her personal record by 14 seconds. Her time of 15:21.66 is the fastest of anyone who has run in a 5,000-meter run this year.

The Cyclones also broke a record in the field. Laishema Hampton, a redshirt senior, broke her own school record in the weight throw, putting up a mark of 67-03.25 feet to beat her previous personal best of 65-04.25 feet.

The ISU women had success in a number of events besides the record-breaking performances from Hampton and Saina.

Danielle Frere, Christina Hillman and Hayli Bozarth swept the shot put event. Frere put up the mark to beat at 55-04.75 feet.

In the 3,000-meter run, redshirt sophomore Maggie Gannon placed fourth with a time of 9:41.25 seconds in her first-ever attempt at the event.

In the 600-meter dash, Ese Okoro finished first by posting a personal best time of 1:21.41 seconds, a time that has Okoro looking forward to the championships next week.

“This meet gives us confidence going into the Big 12 Championships, so we can see where we’re at and remind us of what we need to change and work on,” Okoro said about her team’s performance as a whole Saturday.