Holmes highlights weekend competition

Dan Tracy

After a three-semester hiatus from competing in the triple jump, ISU jumper Akeem Holmes leaped to a first-place finish at the Beach Invitational in Cerritos, Calif.

“It was good to have him out there and just kind of get his feet wet again,” said assistant coach Pete Herber.

Holmes, a Charleston, S.C. native, competed in the triple jump for the first time since transferring to Iowa State this year from Barton County Community College in Great Bend, Kan.

“I felt satisfied with it – I haven’t jumped in almost three whole years so I think to open up the season, I did pretty well,” Holmes said.

Holmes entered the event seeded fourth out of 21 jumpers in the competition, but the former JUCO jumper ended the event jumping farther than jumpers from Division I universities Colorado State, Boise State and Washington. Holmes’ jump of 50 feet, 9 1/2 inches cleared his previous personal record of 48 feet, 9 inches.

“The pieces were there, it was just a matter of him going out there and doing it,” Herber said.

After signing with Iowa State in November, Holmes has been one of many bright spots for the jumps squad, placing 11th in the Big 12 Indoor Championships in late February. With the indoor season behind him, Holmes hopes he continues to climb the Big 12 ranks this outdoor season.

“Indoor season is more or less preseason, but with outdoor, that’s where it is,” Holmes said. “I’ve really made it my goal to [finish] top three in the Big 12 [in the triple jump].”

Along with Holmes’ title in the triple jump at the Beach Invitational, 400-meter hurdler Matt Brinkley finished in second place in the 400-meter hurdles in 53.29 seconds.

The Cyclones will be spending the week preparing for a pair of meets with the Kansas Relays held Wednesday and Thursday in Lawrence, Kan., and the Musco Twilight on Saturday evening in Iowa City.