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Five Cyclones crowned in Big 12 Track Championships

AMES, Iowa – Iowa State wrapped up competition at the Big 12 Championships in impressive fashion, adding five event titles. The Cyclones end Big 12’s with a total of seven event titles, while 29 individuals earned All-Big 12 recognition and 15 set personal records. In team competition, the Cyclone women finished 4th, while the men finished 6th.

Edward Kemboi solidified himself as one of the top, if not best, middle distance runners in the country in the Big 12 finale. Kemboi picked up two titles on Championship Saturday in the 1,000-meter run (2:22.50) and 800-meter run (1:50.67). Kemboi bided his time in both races, allowing others to set the pace. The Cyclone junior relied on his kick, which proved to be more than enough to take the title in both races, giving him his second and third individual conference titles. Kemboi ends the meet responsible for 22.50 of the team’s points from the weekend. The Eldoret, Kenya, native becomes the first individual in Big 12 history to win both the 800m and 1,000m in the same meet.

Cameron Ostrowski leapt into the national spotlight in the men’s high jump, picking up 10 team points. The Burlington, Ill., native took the Big 12 title in the event this afternoon, clearing the bar at a personal-best 7 feet, 3.75 inches, besting his previous mark set at last year’s NCAA West Regional (7’2.5”). Ostrowski was one of three individuals to clear the height, competing against a Texas Tech duo in Jacorian Duffield and Bradley Adkins. The Cyclone junior sealed the victory by achieving the mark on his second attempt, after previously clearing 7’2.5” on his first attempt. Ostrowski is now tied for sixth nationally in the event, earning his third All-Big 12 honor, and moves into second place on Iowa State’s all-time indoor top-10 list.

Ejiro Okoro added another title to her resume, winning the women’s 800m in 2:05.43. Okoro was solid throughout the race and ran on the shoulder of the leaders until the bell lap. In the final lap, Okoro opened up her stride and overtook the leaders. The Birmingham, England, native would not surrender the lead and notched her second title of the weekend. Okoro ran the anchor leg of the Big 12 champion women’s distance medley relay last night.

Christina Hillman continued her dominance over the Big 12 this season, notching the event title with a best mark of 56 feet, 4.5 inches. Hillman threw the mark on her second attempt. The Dover, Del., native has won five of her six competitions this year.

Jan Jeuschede notched six points in the men’s shot put. The Rosrath, Germany, native threw a personal-best 60 feet, 9.25 inches, over six inches farther than his previous mark (60’3”). Jeuschede hurled the mark on his third attempt. His final toss also bested his previous mark, hitting a distance of 60’4.50” on his sixth attempt.

In the men’s 60-meter hurdles, Ryan Sander added eight big team points, posting a season-best mark of 7.97 seconds en route to a second-place overall finish. The time is his best of the season, closing the indoor season with a strong performance.

Maggie Gannon recorded a personal record for the second day in a row in the mile run, crossing the line in fourth place in 4:43.73. Gannon ran in sixth for the majority of the race and out-kicked a pair of runners ahead of her to pick up five team points. The Burlington, Ill., native ran her previous best in yesterday’s prelims in 4:47.32.

A pair of Cyclones picked up team points in the women’s high jump in Kelly McCoy
(5th) and Hannah Willms (6th). Both individual cleared the height, but McCoy cleared a previous mark in fewer attempts to separate her from Willms. The mark is a career best for McCoy, improving her mark for the third time this season and lifting her into a tie for fourth on the all-time event indoor list.

The trio of Samantha Bluske (4th), Katy Moen (5th) and Bethanie Brown (6th) again scored big points for the Cyclones. The three each set personal records in the event en route to tallying a total of 12 team points. Bluske crossed the line in 9:18.61, with Moen and Brown close on her heels in 9:19.17 and 9:19.40, respectively. The trio is now ranked fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively, on Iowa State’s all-time top-10 indoor list in the event.

Iowa State 2013 Big 12 Champions
Edward Kemboi: 800m, 1000m
Ejiro Okoro: 800m, DMR
Maggie Gannon: DMR
Perez Rotich: DMR
Kendra White: DMR
Christina Hillman: Shot Put
Cameron Ostrowski: Shot Put
Samantha Bluske: 5,000m

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