Cyclones will take short trip to Des Moines for Jim Duncan Invitational

Dylan Montz

After traveling to Arizona and California throughout the outdoor season so far, the ISU men’s track and field team will now make the 45-minute drive to Drake Stadium in Des Moines for the Jim Duncan Invitational.

ISU coach Corey Ihmels said that this meet will be a great opportunity for his kids to compete to prepare them for later on in the season.

“Some of those [athletes] who didn’t travel to Arizona State or California will get a chance to compete,” Ihmels said. “And also we have a lot of kids that are redshirting or are unattached, for whatever reason, will get a chance to compete. It’s kind of a good segue for us to have a meet that close.”

Redshirt freshman Kyle Donnelly, who has not trained in a few weeks due to shin issues, said he is feeling a lot better and will be ready to compete in Des Moines. Donnelly will compete in the 800-meter run this weekend and said he is excited for his first race this outdoor season.

“It’s a smaller meet, but it will be good to just get into a race with some people and see how it goes,” Donnelly said.

Fellow redshirt freshman Brandon Barnes will compete in the 800-meter run and said he will use the race this weekend as a confidence boost going forward into the later part of this season.

Barnes also said that competing just a short distance away from Ames will be really nice.

“We get to go to a lot of cool places but Drake has a really good track and is really close to home [so it will be really nice],” Barnes said. “I can wake up from my bed and go down there, then come back. We don’t have to deal with travel and stuff, and there aren’t any time zone changes, which wears your body down more than you would think. It will be really nice to not have to deal with that.”

Ihmels said the Jim Duncan Invite is an opportunity for the kids who are redshirting or not on the travel squad right now to show what they can do.

“Hopefully they mix it up and get in there, compete and do well,” Ihmels said. “Any opportunity you can get to be successful, you’ve got to take advantage of it, and hopefully we’ll have some kids go down there and take advantage of a great opportunity this weekend.”

The Jim Duncan Invitational will begin on Friday and conclude on Saturday at Drake Stadium in Des Moines.