June 10, 2011
DES MOINES, Iowa -- The Hawkeyes finalized the third day of competition at the NCAA Championships with Jeffery Herron in the men's high jump and Betsy Flood and Brooke Eilers in the women's 5k. Despite inclement weather and a lightning delay, Herron and Flood both finished among the top- 15 in their respective events.
After clearing the first two bars, 2.05 and 2.10 meters, Herron equaled his personal record set in Eugene, Ore., 7-0 ¼ (2.14m) on his third attempt at the height. The athletes were forced to take a break from competition after was suspended for an hour for lightning and rain. Following the delay, Herron did not clear the 7-1 ½ (2.17m) bar. The junior placed 13th overall.
"I don't think it was too tough [the rain delay]," Herron said of the conditions. "I think it was tougher for the guys who hadn't cleared seven feet yet. There was a lot more pressure on them. I still had two misses at seven foot and I knew it would come back to get me. I think it did, but seven foot none the less so take it for what it's worth."
Herron concludes his season with a best mark of 7-0 ¼, reached in consecutive meets (West Regional, NCAA Championships). The Richmond, Texas native tied for first place at the West Regional and finished fifth at the Big Ten Championships.
In the final race of the night, junior distance duo Betsy Flood and Brooke Eilers were featured in the women's 5,000 meter run. Flood set her pace with the top-ten of the pack, staying there until nearly the 3k mark before moving up to fifth. With just three laps to go, she fell back in the race as the pace quickened and the pack thinned out. Flood finished 15th overall with a time of 16:08.63, while Eilers crossed the finished line at 16:25.62, placing 22nd.
"I don't really set time goals very often but I wanted to come here and compete and I wanted to do things I hadn't done before," Flood said. "I think I gave myself the opportunity to do that. I asked God to show me his plan for me on this day and that was his plan and I feel like I did everything I could do. I am disappointed but I am also really content and excited for next year."
The pair was able to train together for the past two weeks in preparation after both finishing among the top-12 in Eugene, Ore.
"All week we've been saying how blessed we are to be together and we've been able to bounce back off each other's different emotions," Eilers said. "Some days were really hard to train and some days it was easy. But, having each other just made it so much fun. It was really great."
Flood, a Des Moines native, was running in her third outdoor NCAA Championships of her career, but first 5k of the meet. Eilers made the first appearance of her career at the event.
Iowa's final competitor of the championships will hit the runway tomorrow in the men's triple jump competition. Junior Troy Doris is scheduled to jump at 11:05 a.m.