Illinois track & field looks to continue building momentum at Meyo Invitational 


Photo courtesy of Illini Athletics

Runner Olivia Howell runs during the mile for the Big Ten Championships on Feb. 29, 2020. The Illini will be away on Friday and Saturday for the Meyo Invitational in Indiana.

By Ben Fader, Staff Writer

The Illini will travel to South Bend, Indiana, on Friday and Saturday for the Meyo Invitational and are looking to build on the momentum they have built at the first three meets.

Hosted by Notre Dame, the meet will include Louisville, Indiana, Miami (Fla.), Iowa, Minnesota, Rutgers, Michigan and Ohio State. The Iowa men and Ohio State women are both ranked in this week’s USTFCCCA Indoor Track rankings and will be the teams to beat.

Live results will be updated and posted at Endurance Race Timing during the meet. The meet starts at 1 p.m. on the ACC Network, broadcasted on ESPN.

The women’s pentathlon will start the meet on Friday at 10:30 a.m., followed by the field events at 3 p.m. Saturday’s track events begin at 9 a.m., while field events start at 9:30 a.m. with the triple jump.

The Illini are coming off consecutive solid performances, totaling 27 event titles, numerous facility records and one program record in the previous two weeks, and would love to keep it going.

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Junior Olivia Howell has continued to impress this season after winning the Big Ten mile and being named First-Team All-Big Ten during the 2021 indoor and outdoor seasons and a Second-Team All-American in the outdoor season.

Howell broke the Illinois women’s mile record in Louisville and now stands alone in Illini history, making her one of the top Illini at the meet.

Graduate student Jon Davis is also coming off an excellent weekend in which he took two event titles. Davis also took the mile as well as the 800m, setting personal and facility records for both events.

The top Illini will have their work cut out for them once again.

Notre Dame track & field also competed in the PNC Lenny Lyles Invitational last weekend as Michael Shoaf (men’s weight throw) and Rachel Tanczos (women’s shot put) both took home first place in their events, while Tanczos broke a facility record with a throw of 15.91m.

Ohio State has an excellent women’s shot put athlete as well in Adelaide Aquilla. A 2020 Olympian and All-American, Aquilla will have a target on her back this weekend.

The last top-tier athlete for Illini fans to look out for is reigning Big Ten Track Athlete of the Week Jenoah McKiver. McKiver won the 400m at the Arkansas Invitational last weekend, recording a time of 45.78 seconds, good for the second-fastest in the country this year.

The Illini have the athletes to compete, making this weekend another great test of how they stack up against some of the nation’s best.



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