Jayhawks See 12 Qualify for NCAA Indoor Championships
March 4, 2013
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The third-ranked Kansas women will have 11 entries for the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships to be contested Friday and Saturday in Fayetteville, Ark., it was announced Monday night by the NCAA. The Jayhawks finished in a program-best second place at the meet last year after seeing seven of its athletes qualify. Senior Kyle Clemons is the lone qualifier on the men’s side, earning a trip in the 400 meters.
The Kansas women will feature the top two seeds in the long jump with seniors Andrea Geubelle and Francine Simpson set to compete in Fayetteville. Both were first-team All-Americans in the indoor event a year ago with Simpson taking fourth and Geubelle placing eighth. Geubelle has the top mark in the nation this year at 6.69 meters (21-11.5 ft.) with Simpson at second after her season-best mark of 6.59 meters (21-7.5 ft.).
Geubelle will also try to defend her NCAA indoor triple jump title as she enters this year’s national meet at No. 2 in the U.S. The senior’s title-winning mark from a year ago is a full 10 inches shorter than her best this season, a school-record of 13.91 meters (45-7.75 ft.).
Juniors Natalia Bartnovskaya and Demi Payne will each compete in their first NCAA indoor meet, both boasting top-10 seeds. Bartnovskaya is the KU school record holder and sits at No. 3 in the nation with her vault of 4.43 meters (14-6.25 ft.). Payne cleared a career-best 4.25 meters (13-11.25 ft.) at the Jayhawk Classic on Jan. 25, the eighth-best mark in the NCAA this year.
KU will see two Jayhawks in the throwing events, with senior Alena Krechyk earning a trip to her second-consecutive national meet in the weight throw and freshman Anastasiya Muchkayev claiming the 16th and final qualifying spot in the shot put. Krechyk posted a school record mark of 21.72 meters (71-4.75 ft.) in early February at the Armory Collegiate Invite in New York City, the fourth-best heave in the nation this year. Muchkayev broke her native Isreal’s national shot put record twice this season, the later a throw of 15.69 meters (51-5.75 ft.) in late January.
Diamond Dixon will be in Fayetteville to try and defend her indoor title in the 400 meters. The junior claimed her second indoor league championship in the event two weeks ago with a time of 52.52. Her mark puts her at No. 9 in the NCAA this season.
Dixon will be joined by three senior All-Americans in the 4×400-meter relay. Denesha Morris, Paris Daniels and Taylor Washington will join forced with Dixon as they look to improve upon their third-place finish at the meet a year ago. The quartet has the seventh-fastest time in the U.S. this season, after running 3:33.71 last weekend at the Alex Wilson Last Chance in South Bend, Ind.
Daniels will have a busy weekend as she is entered in both the 60 meters and the 200 meters as well as the 4×400-meter relay. Daniels is seeded in the top-10 in both her individual events, boasting the sixth-best 200 meter time this year (23.15) which came in her Big 12 championship run two weeks ago in Ames. Daniels is No. 10 in the 60 meters after running 7.32 at the Bob Timmons Challenge in December, her first race of the season.
Sophomore Lindsay Vollmer earned her way to her first NCAA indoor championships with her school-record score of 4,123 in the pentathlon. Vollmer is the No. 6 seed entering the event after winning the league title in the event on Feb. 22.
The men’s lone entry is Clemons who earned a spot by way of his school-record performance in the 400 meter semifinals at the conference meet. The senior ran 46.44 to claim the 15th seed in Fayetteville.
The meet will kick off at 12:30 p.m. Friday, March 8 and will conclude at 8:20 p.m. Saturday, March 9. Stay updated on each of the Jayhawks’ performances by logging on to KUAthletics.com and following on twitter at KU_Track.
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