Manning, Sultanova, Agafonov Win Big 12 Titles
Feb. 29, 2008
LINCOLN, Neb. – Seniors Egor Agafonov, Crystal Manning and Kate Sultanova each became Big 12 champions in their respective events for the University of Kansas track and field teams during day one of the Big 12 Indoor Championships on Friday.
With one day of competition left, the men are in third place with 14 points, while the women, who have two individual champions for the first time since 1998, are in second place with 33 points, behind Nebraska’s 49.50.
Sultanova became the first Jayhawk to win back-to-back indoor conference titles in the pole vault, while Agafonov is the only Jayhawk to win three consecutive weight throw titles. Manning became Kansas’ first Big 12 long jump champion since Monique Peters in 2002.
Agafonov surpassed Chris Rohr of Missouri on his final throw of the day to win the Big 12 Championship in the men’s weight throw with a toss of 22.67 meters (74 feet, 4½ inches).
“I told him to relax and not worry about the throw or the distance, but to just concentrate on his motions,” throws coach Andy Kokhanovsky said.
The Togliatti, Russia, native improved his automatic qualifying mark and regained the nation’s lead in the event. “I was just trying to throw as far as I could,” Agafonov said of his final attempt. “I had nothing to lose.”
Sultanova successfully defended her Big 12 pole vault championship with her winning effort of 4.13 meters (13-06 ½ ft.).
“I felt good about my last jump,” the Krasnodar, Russia native said. “I’m just happy about winning so that I can help the team get points.”
Kansas’ women scored 18 team points in the pole vault with three vaulters finishing within the top-six. Senior Libby Harmon tied for third with a jump of 3.83 meters (12-06 ¾ ft.) and freshman Julia Cummings placed sixth at the same height, losing the tie-breaker due to a miss on the first bar.
Manning won the conference championship in the long jump with a career-best leap of 6.05 meters (19-10 ¼ ft.).
“It felt pretty good,” Manning said of her winning jump. “I just wanted to be positive and stay positive. Coach (Wayne Pate) told me not to add anything or do anything more than I normally do. He said that if I do what I’ve been doing, I’ll be fine.”
In the women’s weight throw, junior Zlata Tarasova broke her own school record and improved her NCAA provisional qualifying mark with her toss of 18.97 meters (62-03 ft.). Tarasova’s previous record was 18.92 meters (62-01 ¼ ft.) at the Tyson Invitational in 2007.
Senior Barrett Saunders scored for Kansas in the men’s long jump, placing fifth. His jump of 7.36 meters (24-01 ¾ ft.) was a season-best.
Junior Ashley Brown qualified for the 60-meter hurdles finals with her time of 8.44, just one-hundreth-of-a-second off a provisional mark. Juniors Nickesha Anderson (60 and 200 meters), Charity Stowers (600-yard run) and Victoria Howard (200 meters), sophomore Lauren Bonds (1,000-meter run), senior Maresia Pencil (800 meter-run) and freshman Kendra Bradley (400-meter dash) also advanced to Saturday’s finals.
On the men’s side, Matt Baysinger will run in the finals of the 600-yard run after a season-best time of 1:10.77 in the prelims, while senior Julius Jiles matched a season-best of 7.88 in qualifying for the finals of the 60-meter hurdles. Sophomore Jack Sachse also advanced to the finals in the 800-meter run.
“The women are about where I was expecting them to be points-wise,” head coach Stanley Redwine said of the team’s performance after the first day of competition. “The men still have people in the 60-meter hurdles, 600 and 800 meters tomorrow and those that didn’t qualify set personal records. It was a good day.”
Multi-events continue at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday while the women’s triple jump begins at 1:30 p.m. and the finals of the 60-meter hurdles at 3 p.m. mark the start of the field and running events on the final day of competition. The 2008 Indoor Big 12 champions will be announced following the conclusion of the men’s 1,600-meter relay at 6:45 p.m.
Day One Standings:
Men-Through Three Events:
Texas Tech 12
Texas A&M 10
Oklahoma State 8
Iowa State 4
Kansas State —
Women-Through Six Events:
Kansas State 26
Texas Tech 24
Iowa State 18
Texas A&M 12.25
Oklahoma State 8
60m Hurdles Prelims: 3-Jiles (7.88)
60m Hurdles Pentathlon: 11-Kirk (7.31)
600y Prelims: 8-Baysinger (1:10.77)
800m Prelims: 8-Sachse (1:53.60)
5,000m: 14-Hefferon (14:43.33), 15-Imgrund (14:49.65)
Weight Throw: 1-Agafonov (22.67m)
Long Jump: 5-Saunders (7.36m), 11-Turner (7.15m)
Long Jump Pentathlon: 12-Kirk (6.53m)
Shot Put Pentathlon: 11-Kirk (11.77m)
60m Dash Prelims: 5-Anderson (7.29)
60m Hurdles Prelims: 5-Brown (8.44)
200m Prelims: 5-Anderson (23.46), 8-Howard (23.90)
400m Prelims: 5-Bradley (55.57), 9-Butler (56.01)
600y Prelims: 5-Stowers (1:23.86)
800m: 6-Pencil (2:13.59)
1,000m Prelims: 5-Bonds (2:50.44)
Weight Throw: 5-Tarasova (18.97m)
Pole Vault: 1-Sultanova (4.13m), 3-Harmon (3.83m), 6-Cummings (3.83m), 15-Hayes (3.53m)
Long Jump: 1-Manning (6.05m)
Distance Medley Relay: 8-Kansas (11:50.32)