Takeaways: Cyclones earn five wins at ISU Holiday Invitational

Iowa State runners compete in the ISU Holiday Invitational on Dec. 11.

Nick Flores

Iowa State hosted the annual ISU Holiday Invitational at Lied Recreation Center and began their home season with five wins.

The Cyclones took home victories in the women’s 400-meter dash, weight throw, 60-meter hurdles, 3,000-meter run and the long jump. 

Notable victories

Zakiyah Amos posted a personal record in her 400-meter dash as she ran a 54.70. This was the first sub-55 of her career and the first sub-55 by a Cyclone woman indoors since 2015. 

That time was enough to earn the victory for the Cyclones and mark her third place nationally in NCAA Division I.

In the women’s weight throw event, Venezuelan Antonella Creazzola also posted a personal record of 18.15 meters. This not only earned her the victory in the event but also had her move to 10th place in ISU history. 

Katarina Vlahovic ran an 8.39 in the 60-meter hurdles, which earned her the victory in that event, and Grace Dickel took the 3,000-meter run win with a time of 9:53.59. The final victory for the Cyclones came in the women’s long jump as Sydney Willits won with a score of 5.93 meters. 

The Cyclone women showed out at the ISU Holiday Invitational as they earned each of the five Cyclones victories at the event. 

Although the women took all the victories, that does not mean the men did not perform well also. 

Strong performances from Cyclone men

Before the Invitational, it was no secret that one of the marquee events would be the men’s 800-meter run. A lot of high-performing Cyclones were competing in the event, such as Cebastian Gentil, Nehemia Too, Darius Kipyego, Alex Lomong, Jason Gomez, David Thompson, Joe Schaefer and Frank Hayes.

This event saw Gentil finish in second place with a time of 1:48.95 and moved him into Iowa State’s all-time top-10 for the event at number nine. Too also ran a sub-1:50 as he finished in third with a time of 1:49.87, a personal best for the senior. 

Kipyego, Lomong and Hayes also finished shortly after and joined Gentil in the top-10 in NCAA Division I this season for the event. Kipyego posted a time of 1:49.50, earning him fourth place, Lomong finished with 1:49.87 and Hayes finished sixth at 1:51.78. 

With a lot of emphasis on this event heading into the weekend, the Cyclones will be very glad to have four runners run a sub-1:50 score. 

Other notable performances from the Invitational include Thai Thompson’s second-place finish in the men’s 60-meter hurdles as the sophomore began his ISU career with a personal record of 8.47. 

The Cyclones also finished in second place in the 4×400 relay, and the men’s 400-meter dash saw two Cyclones finish within the top five. Both Gage Clay and Charlie Johnson recorded a top-five finish as Clay earned third with a time of 48.73 and Johnson finished fifth with a time of 49.91. 

Iowa State had a lot of notable performances from both the men and women in their indoor home debut.

The Cyclones have already shown what they are capable of during the last two meets, the BU Season Opener and the Woo Pig Classic, and the ISU Holiday Invitational further proves the level that they are at.

The Cyclones are back in action on January 14-15 as they will be taking part in the Graduate Classic, which is hosted by Nebraska.