It was only three days prior that the Iowa State women’s track and field team announced that they’d be sending athletes to Saturday’s Nebraska Invitational.
However, despite the late notice, Iowa State’s entries still put up impressive showings throughout the day in a final tune-up before the Big 12 Outdoor Championships. Although there were no first place finishes, every Cyclone who competed on the day earned a top-five finish in their respective events.
The day kicked off with senior Christabel Okeke’s return to competition in the hammer throw following a three-week hiatus due to a death in the family. In her return, Okeke earned fourth place with a best throw of 180 feet.
Roughly two hours later, sophomore Bailey Righi earned Iowa State another fourth-place finish on the day with her performance in the javelin. Righi had a best throw of 123-feet 9-inches in the event.
Around the same time that was happening, Iowa State saw its two entries in the shot put, freshmen Essence Henderson and Keiara Williams, earn new personal records. Henderson had a best throw of 51-feet 9-inches in the event, while Williams’ best effort went 49-feet one-inch.
The two earned third and fourth place finishes, respectively, for their performances. Henderson also earned another third place finish in the discus with a best throw of 159-feet, 7-inches.
Jalaiya Bartley then followed those performances with a new personal record of her own in the triple jump. After finishing in the top ten at the Drake Relays, Bartley earned second place on Saturday with a jump of 40-feet, two-and-one-fourth inches.
Finally, Emma Whigham earned a pair of top-five finishes as ISU’s only runner competing on Saturday. Whigham started out her day earning fourth place in the 100 meter dash with a time of 12.35 seconds, and then scored a third-place finish shortly after in the 400 meter hurdles with a time of 1:02.18.
Iowa State’s next meet will take place next weekend when the team travels to Waco, Texas for the Big 12 Outdoor Championships. Events will take place from Friday, May 11 through Sunday, May 13.