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SLATE: NCAA track championships, day 3 - the heptathlon starts and Kansas State is ready

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Mittie adds a transfer, and some random other stuff to start your weekend.

Nina Schultz and Ariel Okorie start their quests today.
Nina Schultz and Ariel Okorie start their quests today.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The biggest news of the day comes from Eugene, Ore., where day three of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships will get under way in a few hours. Nina Schultz and Ariel Okorie will try to get a slow-starting Wildcat train moving in the right direction as they begin the heptathlon at 12:30pm CT. Tejaswin Shankar will get started in the high jump tonight at 7pm.

For those used to K-State hanging around near the top of the leaderboard as the weekend starts to swing into gear, disappointment abounds. The men have yet to score, while the women only have two points and one first-team All-American so far thanks to Helene Ingvaldsen’s seventh-place finish in the hammer throw. Several Wildcats have earned second-team honors, however, including decathlete Aaron Booth, hammer thrower Janee’ Kassanavoid, shot put artist Jess St. John, and sprinter Terrell Smith — the first Wildcat to ever earn All-American honors in an outdoor sprinting event after finishing 16th in the men’s 200m.

Field events and the first half of the heptathlon will air on ESPN3 today starting at 2:20pm, followed on ESPN proper by the men’s championship events at 7:30. Starting at 10:00am on ESPNU, you can catch a replay of yesterday’s women’s events.

Today’s Sports Extra also focuses on track as Corbin McGuire profiles K-State’s triple-jump duo of Shardia Lawrence and Konstantina Romaiou, who are both returning to Eugene after a disappointing trip in 2017.

Football

Our own BracketCat profiled Trace Kochevar, #86, in yesterday’s countdown.

Ryan Black at the Mercury reports on the tight end battle between Blaise Gammon and Nick Lenners.

Per David Statman of DieHards, Fort Worth Southwest wide receiver Nnamdi Adim-Madumere has three Big 12 schools in his final ten: Baylor, Texas Tech, and K-State. Of course, he’s also got Alabama, Texas A&M, and Minnesota on there, so who knows?

Jordan Willis is settling in over in Cincinnati, writes Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Meanwhile, at the Chiefs 247 site, Kirk Larabee runs down Kansas City’s summer workout injury list, which includes a gimpy calf for Byron Pringle.

Each year, the Big 12 offers a pair of post-graduate scholarships in the name of Dr. Prentice Gautt to each of its 10 schools. This year, the K-State honorees are defensive back Brogan Barry and women’s basketball star Kaylee Page.

Women’s Basketball

That’s as good a point for a segue as any, right? Jeff Mittie has added a new transfer to the roster courtesy of the Cal-Santa Barbara Gauchos. Guard Sarah Bates, a 5’9” guard from Clovis (Calif.) West, will redshirt this season as required by transfer rules. Sadly, she’s replacing a departing Wildcat, as JUCO transfer Anastasia Tsybaeva has left the program without ever suiting up for a game. The center redshirted last season.

Men’s Basketball

Two months ago, Sports Illustrated’s Molly Geary dropped her way-too-early top 25 for the coming season. Geary slotted K-State 17th, and didn’t even mention Barry Brown‘s name. She’s revisted the list in the wake of draft retractions, and as a result she’s moved the Cats up to 14th.

Jon Rothstein, via Twitter, announced that K-State had completed its 2018-19 non-conference schedule by adding a game at Bramlage against former Cinderella George Mason Patriots.

That’s the only report so far, and as such we’ll have to file it under “still a rumor”. But since it’s Rothstein, it’s worth reporting as one.

Baseball

A couple of stories about Nick Martini and his debut with the Oakland Athletics from Deaundra Allen at the Star and Joe Stephenson at the Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, Ill., Martini’s hometown). Martini hasn’t gotten off to a great start, unfortunately; he’s stepped the plate five times, and he’s still waiting to get on base. Since the A’s are playing the Royals, maybe some of us are hoping he stays cold for a couple more days. But just a couple.

Tennis

K-State is ranked sixth in the June ITA Central Region rankings, which in a surprising misstep by the usually overhyping athletic department is a bit cooler than it sounds. The press release mistakenly states there are only 10 teams in the region, but there are actually 26. (The rankings only go to 10, you see.) Three Wildcats are ranked in the regional top 20 as singles players: Margot Decker, Maria Linares, and Rosanna Maffei, all of whom were freshmen this spring. None of K-State’s doubles pairs made the top ten of those rankings, however.