Track and Field
The West Preliminaries in Austin are now complete. A total of 15 Kansas State athletes have qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene. The events will be held from June 7-10.
Two Kansas State athletes will be competing in the women’s triple jump at the NCAAs. Shardia Lawrence (5th overall; 13.39m) made up for a miss last year and punched her ticket to Eugene. This will be her first trip to TrackTown USA, but she has her sights set on the championship already. She’ll be joined by teammate Konstantina Romaiou who snuck into the field as the 12th overall finisher (13.08m).
The women’s 4x100 relay team, featuring Akia Guerrier, A'Keyla Mitchell, Ranae McKenzie and Wurrie Njadoe started off the day with a fantastic race, qualifying for the NCAAs with a time of 44.20. In the process, the team shattered the school record set back in 2006 and became the first Kansas State relay squad ever to make it to Eugene.
As befits #HighJumpU, Christoff Bryan not only finished in a tie for the top spot in the men’s high jump with a mark of 2.18m (and no misses at any height), but by qualifying for the NCAA Championships for the third straight year, he helped keep a long streak alive. Kansas State has sent a male high jumper to Eugene every year since 2003.
Sprinters A’Keyla Mitchell and Terrell Smith narrowly missed out on a ticket to Eugene in their respective 200m races. In fact, Mitchell missed qualifying by just 0.01 seconds, while Smith, finishing 15th overall, was just outside the top 12.
To sum up, the following Kansas State athletes have qualified for a spot in Eugene:
- Nina Schultz (heptathlon; qualified in April at the Jim Click Shootout)
- Helene Ingvaldsen (hammer throw)
- Janeé Kassanavoid (hammer throw)
- Shadae Lawrence (discus)
- Ranae McKenzie (400m hurdles)
- Wurrie Njadoe (long jump)
- Shardia Lawrence (triple jump)
- Konstantina Romaiou (triple jump)
- Akia Guerrier/A’Keyla Mitchell/McKenzie/Njadoe (4x100 relay)
- Mitch Dixon (hammer throw)
- Brady Grunder (hammer throw)
- Kyle Smith (hammer throw)
- Brett Neelly (shot put)
- Christoff Bryan (high jump)
In his K-State Q&A, Kellis Robinett riffs on the Wildcats’ over/under for wins being pegged on the low side at 7.5. He thinks 8.5 is more accurate, but maybe Vegas knows something we don’t? (Wichita Eagle)
Berry Tramel ranks every single Big 12 contest of the season. Oklahoma and Oklahoma State feature heavily among the top games, but Kansas State shows up three times in his top 10 alone, so the Wildcats definitely have the attention of local writers at least. (The Oklahoman).
ESPN’s Ryan McGee and Mark Schlabach count the reasons we all can’t wait for football.