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Lewis looks to break records in the upcoming season

BY COURTNEY BAUMANN | DECEMBER 16, 2014 5:00 AM

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When Kevin Lewis did not qualify for the national meet or become an All-American during the cross-country season, admittedly, he was disappointed.

But that didn’t mean he was discouraged. Instead, he turned his attention and training toward track season.

“Coming in, I thought that cross country was probably my best chance to become an All-American because it’s straight-up distance related, and there are more spots awarded for All-American status,” the senior runner for Iowa said. “That kind of hurt when I didn’t qualify, but now because I didn’t qualify, I got to start track earlier.”

A perk of this, according to Lewis, was being able to participate in the Black and Gold Intrasquad meet, which took place on Dec. 6.

Lewis ran a 4:07 in the mile that day, topping his previous personal best and placing him seventh on the all-time list for the Hawkeyes.

“To be able to run 4:07 on this track is really impressive, just because that time on an oversize track will convert to maybe a 4:04,” director of track and field Joey Woody said. “I think that really shows what he’s capable of doing.”

What he’s proven he can do is even more impressive when considering a knee injury during cross-country season limited his training. But he believes working on his flexibility and strength to overcome the injury has worked to his benefit.

According to his coaches — Woody and Layne Anderson — speed in shorter events has been a weakness for Lewis. However, he has been working to cut time in those events in hopes that it will transfer over the longer events, such as the 3,000 meter, 5,000 meter, and 10,000 meter races — ones he believes he can break the school record in.

In the back of everyone’s minds are those school records. The senior is not focused on topping the times in just one event but all three. 

“With the type of runner he is, it’s pretty exciting to think about the 3K and the 5K, and the school records. His potential to run those times is very realistic,” Anderson said. “If we can keep bringing the speed around in the shorter events to where I think we can get it, then I think it makes getting those times even more realistic.”

Lewis’s goals do not stop at breaking school records. He hopes to run well enough in the 10,000-meter race to qualify for the U.S. Olympic trials next summer. In order to do so, he would have to run around a 28:30.

“The 28:30 time would be able to qualify me for the U.S. Olympic trials next summer because it would be in that time frame that counts,” Lewis said. “It’s pretty important for me to try to get a good time in the 10K.”

Woody and Anderson are looking for Lewis to do big things in the upcoming season, and they believe his tenacity will help him achieve his goals.

“When you have goals and you don’t reach them, it always brings a lot more motivation and a lot more toughness,” Woody said. “When it comes down to it, [Lewis is thinking] ‘Hey I really have to prove myself.’ ”

Follow @cbomb12 on Twitter for updates, news, and analysis on the Iowa track and field team.


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