NCAA Indoor Championships
Seniors Olimpia Nowak and Daniel Gooris will represent the University of Northern Iowa track and field teams at the 2012 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships hosted by Boise State University in Nampa, Idaho. Gooris will compete in the heptathlon on Mar. 9-10, and Nowak will take part in the pentathlon on Mar. 10.
OUT OF THE BLOCKS
The Big Stage
The NCAA announced the fields for the 2012 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships on Mar. 5, and University of Northern Iowa seniors Olimpia Nowak and Daniel Gooris are among the qualifiers. Nowak will be making her third appearance at the national meet in the pentathlon, while Gooris will be making his first national meet appearance in the heptathlon.
This will be Nowak's third appearance at the NCAA Indoor Championships, having also qualified as a freshman in 2008 and as a junior in 2011. As a freshman, Nowak earned a 14th place finish with 3,878 points, and last season she placed 12th with 3,947 points.
Nowak broke her own UNI school record in the pentathlon earlier this season, scoring 4,067 points at the Missouri Valley Conference Indoor Championships to rank No. 10 in the nation.
Nowak also qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in the heptathlon in 2010 and 2011.
Gooris's first NCAA Indoor Championships appearance comes on the heels of his second MVC title in the heptathlon. He scored 5,679 points to take the Valley crown - a lifetime-best score for Gooris and No. 2 in UNI history.
Gooris ranks No. 15 of the 16 qualifiers entering the national meet.
Live Video Available
ESPN3 will stream the meet live on March 9 from 7:30-11:45 p.m. ET and March 10 from 8-11:15 p.m. ET. A tape delay of the championship will air Sunday, March 18, at 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
NCAA.com and broncosports.com will stream what ESPN3 is not covering on Friday (Noon-7:30 p.m. ET) and Saturday (12:30-8 pm ET).
What's At Stake?
With their trips to the NCAA Indoor Championships, Nowak and Gooris have the opportunity to accomplish several things. A finish in the top eight places would earn Nowak the first All-America honors of her career and make her the first UNI women's track & field All-American since thrower Rachel Jansen earned the last of her four All-American citations in 2008.
A top-eight finish for Gooris would also result in the first All-America honor of his career. The last Panther men's indoor All-American was Tyler Mulder, placing third in the 800m in 2009.
Nowak is a two-time Missouri Valley Conference champion in the pentathlon and a two-time MVC runner-up, winning the title in 2008 and 2010 and finishing second in 2011 and 2012. This year, she took runner-up honors to Southern Illinois' Malaikah Love, who will also be competing at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
Nowak's Personal Bests
Total Points: 4,067 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
60m Hurdles: 8.35 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
High Jump: 5-07.00 (1.70m) 2010 MVC Indoor Championships
Shot Put: 41-01.75 (12.54m) 2010 MVC Indoor Championships
Long Jump: 19-04.75 (5.91m) 2008 UNI-Dome Open
800m: 2:18.62 2011 NCAA Indoor Championships
Gooris's Personal Bests
Total Points: 5,679 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
60m Dash: 7.41 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
Long Jump: 23-01.75 (7.05m) 2009 MVC Indoor Championships
Shot Put: 46-02.50 (14.08m) 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
High Jump: 6-07.00 (2.01m) 2010 Jack Jennett Invitational
60m Hurdles: 8.51 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
Pole Vault: 17-04.50 (5.30m) 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
1000m: 2:43.30 2012 MVC Indoor Championships
UNI successfully defended titles in three events at the 2012 MVC Indoor Championships on Feb. 25-26. Junior Carlos Anderson claimed the Valley title in the 60m dash for the second year in a row, and senior Justin Romero took his second MVC championship in the shot put after entering the meet ranked No. 3 in the conference. The UNI women won their second consecutive crown in the 4x400m relay with the team of Michaela Brungardt, Paige Knodle, Darian Thompson and Sam Cameron.
One Day, Two Records
Olimpia Nowak broke two school records in one day at the MVC Indoor Championships. In the opening event of the pentathlon, Nowak recorded a time of 8.35 seconds in the 60m hurdles. Four events later, she concluded the pentathlon with a school-record 4,067 points. Nowak also exceeded the previous MVC all-time record in the pentathlon.
A Whole New Level
UNI senior Jenna Wexter upped her own school record in the pole vault at the MVC Indoor Championships, as she cleared 13-01.00 (3.99m) for the first time and earned All-MVC honors with a third-place finish.
A Regular On The Awards Stand
Senior Brady Fritz has spent his fair share of time on the awards stand at the MVC Championships over the last four seasons, but he has yet to capture the elusive Valley title. As a freshman in 2009, Fritz notched three third-place finishes -- indoors in the mile and distance medley relay, and outdoors in the 1500m. In 2010, he finished second in the 800m indoors and outdoors. As a junior in 2011, he ran a leg on the third-place distance medley relay team and placed third in the 800m indoors. This year, Fritz anchored UNI's second-place distance medley relay. In total, he has earned All-MVC honors on eight different occasions.
For the second straight year, UNI scored 26 team points in the 60m dash at the MVC Championships. The Panthers swept the top three places with Carlos Anderson taking first in 6.82 seconds, Jarred Herring second in 6.83 seconds, and Derek Kramer third in 6.95 seconds to fill the podium with Panthers. Freshman Cam Brown notched a seventh-place finish.In the 60m dash last season, UNI took five of the top seven spots, as Anderson won his first Valley title with a time of 6.75 seconds. Herring took All-MVC honors in third, Tim Johnson was fourth, Wilmot Wellington was sixth, and Kramer was seventh.