NCAA Outdoor Championships
Des Moines, Iowa
Three men and one woman will represent the University of Northern Iowa track & field teams at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Des Moines from June 6 through June 9. Daniel Gooris (decathlon, pole vault), Jordan Williams (discus), Justin Romero (shot put) and Olimpia Nowak (heptathlon) will vie for All-America honors throughout the week.
OUT OF THE BLOCKS
Schedule of Events
Wednesday, June 6
Daniel Gooris Decathlon 12 p.m. (100m, LJ, SP, HJ, 400m)
Jordan Williams Discus 2:30 p.m. Flight 2
Thursday, June 7
Daniel Gooris Decathlon 11:30 a.m. (110H, Disc, PV, Jav, 1500m)
Olimpia Nowak Heptathlon 1 p.m. (100H, HJ, SP, 200m)
Friday, June 8
Olimpia Nowak Heptathlon 3 p.m. (LJ, Javelin, 800m)
Daniel Gooris Pole Vault 4:30 p.m. Flight 1
Saturday, June 9
Justin Romero Shot Put 10 a.m. Flight 2
Television / Webstreaming Coverage
ESPNU will televise Saturday's action from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. (CT). The ESPN announcing team is comprised of Trey Bender (play-by-play), Larry Rawson (analyst) and Jill Montgomery (reporter). The entire event will be streamed live through ESPN3.com, with the exception of Wednesday, June 6, which will be streamed at www.NCAA.com. It is available for free.
With qualifiers in five events for the NCAA Outdoor Championships, the Panthers have advanced in their most events since 2009, when they also earned spots in five events. This also marks the largest group of NCAA qualifiers for UNI since the transition to the new championships format in 2010.
Looking for More
Both of UNI's multi-event entries at the NCAA Outdoor Championships -- Olimpia Nowak and Daniel Gooris -- earned All-American recognition at the 2012 NCAA Indoor Championships held in Nampa, Idaho. Nowak took eighth place in the pentathlon for her highest-ever finish at a national event and claimed first-team All-America honors. Gooris placed ninth in the heptathlon for second-team All-America honors in his first national meet appearance.
Junior Jordan Williams will make his first appearance at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the discus on Wednesday afternoon, but he is no stranger to postseason competition. The two-time defending Missouri Valley Conference champion has qualified for the NCAA West Preliminary Rounds in six events over the past three years.
MVC All-Time Best
At the NCAA West Preliminary Rounds in Austin, Texas, on May 24, UNI senior Justin Romero broke the Missouri Valley Conference all-time record in the shot put. Romero threw 62-04.50 (19.01m) on his first attempt to break the MVC all-time best by one inch, topping the mark set by John Smith of Southern Illinois in 1984.
John Holler's UNI shot put school record of 58-06 in 1978 had stood for 34 years until Romero's remarkable run in 2012. Romero has now extended the UNI all-time best mark by nearly four feet, breaking the record three times since Mar. 31 by more than one foot on each occasion.
Jordan Williams and Justin Romero are in the hunt to become UNI's first outdoor Division I All-Americans in a throwing event. Dave Jennings (16th place, indoor weight throw, 2001) is the only Panther to claim Division I All-America honors in a throwing event at the NCAA Championships.
The top eight finishers will earn first-team All-America recognition, and the next eight will be named second-team All-Americans.
Olimpia Nowak is the second UNI woman in history to qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in three different years. Nowak has qualified in the heptathlon in 2010, 2011 and 2012, joining Rachel Jansen as one of the most prominent UNI women on the national scene. Jansen was a three-time All-American in the outdoor shot put from 2006-08.
Daniel Gooris is aiming to become UNI's third All-American in the decathlon in the last five years. Raven Cepeda garnered All-America honors in 2006, 2007 and 2008, and Mat Clark joined him in 2008 and 2009.
Gooris could also become UNI's first All-American in the pole vault since Andre Poljanec's seventh-place finish in 2006. Jacob Pauli (2001-02) and Juri Rovan (1997-99) earned multiple outdoor All-America honors for the Panthers.