Mile posts: Items on Festus Lagat, Josh Yeager, Adam Fogg, Jay Welp, Mike Gille, Reece Smith, Matt Lange
It's a short and sweet WEEKEND UPDATE of the best performances by Iowa-based collegiate and postcollegiate distance runners and triathletes.
There was track and field action a week before Iowan Karissa Schweizer and former Iowa State great Hillary Bor compete for the U.S. in the World Athletics Championships this weekend.
Let's lead off with the Sound Running Sunset Tour #2 event at Occidental College in Los Angeles. Former Iowa State All-American Festus Lagat captured the victory in the fastest section of the men's 800 meters on Saturday night. Lagat, an Under Armour/District TC athlete based in the Washington, D.C. area, covered the two laps in 1 minute, 44.81 seconds to easily top American Isaiah Harris of the Brooks Beasts team by 1.35 seconds. Lagat was coming off a fourth-place finish in the 800 at the Kenyan Trials in Kasarani.
In the men's featured mile, with Lagat pacing, former Iowa State standout Brian Llamas finished ninth in 4:08.18. Llamas is a Newton Running athlete and was making his outdoor track debut. The winner was Tinman Elite's Drew Hunter in 3:54.80.
Former Iowa All-American and Davenport Assumption star prep Mallory King finished fifth in section 2 of the women's 800. King, running unattached, ran 2:04.28. Her personal-best time is 2:03.39 from April. The winner was Abbey Caldwell of Australia in 2:00.03.
At the Stumptown Twilight meet in Portland, Ore., on Friday, former Center Point-Urbana, Drake University and South Dakota State standout Josh Yeager ran a personal-best time in the Men's High Performance 1,500 to place 11th. Yeager ran 3:44.59 to set a new best by three seconds. The winner was Sam Tanner in 3:36.93.
And new Under Armour Mission Run Baltimore Distance athlete Adam Fogg finished 12th in the Guldensporten meet's 1,500 meters at Kortrijk, Belgium, on Saturday. The recent Drake University graduate ran 3:41.88 in the meet that was part of the World Athletics Continental Tour event. The winning time was Justin Kipkoech Kemboi's 3:37.01 effort in a race that included fellow countryman and runner-up Elijah Manangoi.
Switching briefly to off-road racing, former Iowa State standout Dan Curts finished second overall in the first USATF Vertical Mountain Running Championships in New Hampshire's White Mountains on Sunday. The event, hosted by the Loon Mountain Race, featured a 6.1-mile course on steep, grassy slopes, dirt roads and trails with more than 3,000 feet of vertical gain.
Joseph Gray of Colorado Springs took a commanding lead and won in 47:19. Curts, who is now living in Norwich, Vt., was clocked in 48:21 and fended off Andy Wacker by 32 seconds. Gray and Curts qualified for Italy's Challenge Stellina event in August.
Moving to the roads and the always competitive Moonlight Chase 4-mile race in Eldridge on Saturday night. The Running Wild Elite team placed seven in the top 10, with men's team coordinator Devin Allbaugh setting a club record by running 19:38. Allbaugh is a former Pleasant Valley High standout.
Former BCLUW of Conrad and Morningside College athlete Jay Welp finished runner-up in 19:46, which is second best in club history. Welp recently moved from Iowa City to Springfield, Ill. He is a Running Wild Elite athlete, as is former Augustana College athlete Mike Gille, in third place in 19:50. In fourth was RWE teammate Dan Froeschle, a former Davenport Assumption prep from Davenport, in 19:58. Ford Washburn, an Iowa City High senior-to-be, broke up the RWE group in fifth place in 20:11. In sixth was RWE's Elliott Klauer, a former Pleasant Valley prep and Iowa State student, in 21:20. RWE teammate Dalton Rice, a former Clinton High and Clinton Community College athlete, finished seventh in 21:23. Truman Thompson, another Iowa City High runner, took eighth in 21:28.
The women's winner was recent Iowa City High grad Rowan Boulter in 24:49. Boulter averaged 6:12 per mile. Boulter, who was 12th in the 3,000 meters at the recent Iowa state track and field championships, finished 31 seconds ahead of RWE's Brenna Gray. Gray is a former Pleasant Valley and Augustana College athlete.
Recent NCAA Division II outdoor national champion Reece Smith won the title of the Duesey Days two-mile race in Garner on Saturday. The former Garner-Hayfield-Ventura star and current Northwest Missouri State athlete ran 9:32 to top current Bearcats assistant coach Wick Cunningham, who is from Knoxville and ran for Northwest Missouri State, by 12 seconds. Cunningham's wife, former Cedar Falls prep and current Bearcats runner Caroline Cunningham, was the women's winner and took third overall in 13:05.
At the 51st Midnight Madness 5K in Ames Saturday night, current Iowa State assistant coach/recruiting coordinator Matt Lange was the overall winner in 15:42, a 5:03 pace. Lange ran in college for Furman and George Washington and was 35 seconds ahead of Jaden Merrick, 14, of Cedar Falls. Ames High's Claire Helmers was the women's winner in 18:39, a 6-minute pace per mile.
Wrapping things up with the Iowa Games Duathlon on Sunday. Christian Sande was the winner in 1:03:15 and the women's winner and finishing sixth overall was Kiersten Hathaway in 1:08:28.
MISSING A TOP DISTANCE RUNNER OR TRIATHLETE?: Let me know at email@example.com.
Want to hear more about distance running in Iowa. Listen to my podcast here: https://anchor.fm/lance-bergeson8
This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: Mile posts: Items on Festus Lagat, Josh Yeager, Adam Fogg, Jay Welp, Mike Gille, Reece Smith, Matt Lange