Iowa State sets sights on medley relay before Big 12 Championships

Members of the Iowa State Track Team compete in day two of the Iowa State Classic Feb.11 in Lied Recreation Athletic Center.

Zane Douglas

One week to go.

The Iowa State men’s track and field team is ready to roll again this weekend as it competes in the Nebraska Tune-Up and the UCS Invitational, just one week away from the Big 12 Championships.

“As it stands right now, in the men’s 5k we qualified 11 of the top 16 in the country just at our meet,” said head coach Jeremy Sudbury on last week’s Iowa State classic.

Iowa State made sure it had its meet set-up well enough for teams to send their best athletes.

This next weekend, the Cyclones will be taking on a new task with the medley relay. Iowa State will need to be at its best for this race.

“We believe we have the individual pieces to qualify for nationals,” Sudbury said. “It’s just a matter of putting them all together.”

The medley relay will be happening in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, on Friday and as it is the last weekend before the Big 12 Championships and only three weeks removed from the NCAA Championships, it will be packed with teams hoping to qualify.

This weekend will be especially different because for the most part it is just a rest weekend for the team. As for the medley, they will be competing for the highest time instead of the highest place.

For the Cyclones, time is more important than placing for most of the season, until the Big 12 Championships and nationals. With placing, there is more strategy involved, which will be shown the following weekend.

Sophomore middle-distance runner Roshon Roomes will be competing in the medley relay this weekend in North Carolina.

“I feel really good for this weekend,” Roomes said. “I want to run fast just like I did last weekend.”

Roomes has been rapidly improving for the Cyclones in his second year with the program. He will be running the 800-meter portion of the medley relay, which also consists of 1600-meter, 400-meter and 1200-meter distances.

Although Roomes is doing the same distance as last meet, he said he feels that a relay has a much different energy than a singular race has.

“I feel like being in a relay is a little bit more of a push,” Roomes said when discussing the differences that this race will bring.

The Cyclones have a lot of athletes that fit in with the distances in a medley relay, so it seems like they should be at an advantage with their depth.

Even with the advantage, some of the best relay teams in the nation will be there hoping to qualify, so it should be tough race.

After Friday though, it will officially be time to prepare again to host another home meet, and that one will be very important.

The Big 12 Championships will mark the end of the indoor season for many team members.

As for Sudbury, the season is just getting started.

“Going into Big 12’s, we’re excited.”