Cyclone Open highlighted by national bests

Sophomore Zakiyah Amos participates in the 200-meter dash Saturday.

Adarsh Tamma

Records and personal bests were the major highlights in Iowa State’s first home track and field meet of the season, the Cyclone Open. The Cyclones competed against athletes from Northern Iowa and Drake, along with others competing as part of separate running and athletic clubs. Iowa State proved to be victorious in 11 events across the board.

Starting off in the sprints, sophomore Katarina Vlahovic continued her strong start to the 2020 season by taking first place in the 60-meter hurdles finals. She finished in another personal best time of 8.38 seconds. Second to Vlahovic was fellow Canadian Kaylyn Hall, who crossed the line in 8.60 seconds. The Cyclones also won the men’s 60, as senior Mason Weh won comfortably in 8.10 seconds, while freshman Jack Garber finished fourth.

Elsewhere on the track, Iowa State took home the top prize in both the men’s and women’s 600-yard races. In the women’s race, sophomore Zakiyah Amos edged out Northern Iowa athlete Kate Nimrod to win in a time of 1:23.51. Iowa State placed four other athletes in the top eight. In the men’s race, fellow sophomore Cebastian Gentil finished first in a time of 1:10.41, with freshman Joven Nelson placing third. Rounding out the sprints was the men’s 400-meter dash, where sophomores Charlie Johnson and Gage Clay finished second and third, respectively.

In the middle distance events, the race of the day was the men’s 800-meter, where a trio of Cyclones turned in their best performances of the season. Seniors Festus Lagat, Roshon Roomes and Daniel Nixon went 1-2-3 in the event, all times that are now in the top five in the nation. Lagat smashed Texas Tech junior Takieddine Hedeilli’s mark and crossed the line in 1:47.55, now second all-time in Cyclones history to Edward Kemboi. In the women’s 1 mile, sophomore Cailie Logue produced a season best time of 4:48.01, losing out in a battle to Northern Iowa assistant coach Alex Wilson.

In the field events, the Cyclones had more success, as sophomores Megan Durbin and Miles Rupiper won the women’s and men’s high jump titles, respectively. In the throwing events, junior Keiara Williams won the shot put with a personal best throw of 14.37 meters, while also breaking her best mark in the weight throw with a toss of 17.39 meters, where she finished second. In the men’s weight throw, redshirt senior Vlad Pavlenko, who competed as an unattached athlete, won the event with a toss of 21.12 meters.

The Cyclones will be splitting themselves up in next weekend’s trio of meets, with athletes traveling to the Texas Tech Open in Lubbock, Texas, the University of Washington Invitational in Seattle, and the Indiana Relays in Bloomington, Indiana.