Throwers To Highlight Jayhawks' 2010 Outdoor Season Opener
March 25, 2010
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
Two weeks after the conclusion of a successful indoor track and field season, the Jayhawks head back to Fayetteville, Ark., to compete in their first event of the 2010 outdoor season. KU will have 86 athletes in tow for the Razorback Spring Invitational on Saturday, March 27. Among those athletes are five standout throwers who all have the credentials to be considered among the nation’s elite.
Freshman Mason Finley, who recently earned Indoor All-America honors in the shot put, will make his collegiate debut in the discus throw, the event in which he holds the national high school record (236-6 ft.). Finley also owns the U.S.A. Juniors record in the event. His success in the discus and shot put throughout high school earned the Salida, Colo., native the title of 2009 Track and Field News Boys Athlete of the Year. Finley will step into the ring this weekend at approximately 2 p.m.
Also competing in the discus will be senior Brian Bishop, who led the Jayhawks in the event last year. Bishop, a native of Cantrall, Ill., took third at the 2009 Big 12 Outdoor Championships with a career-best throw of 187-06 ft, which also earned him a spot at the Midwest Regional Championships.
Nearly two years removed from competition, Iain Trimble will make his much anticipated return in the javelin. Before suffering a season-ending injury in 2008, the Overbrook, Kan., native had twice earned a U.S. Olympic Trials-qualifying mark in the event, not to mention meeting the NCAA regional-qualifying standard in all three meets in which he competed that year. Trimble will take the stage in Fayetteville at approximately 6 p.m.
On the women’s side, sophomore Alena Krechyk and freshman Heather Bergmann will be fierce competitors, as both athletes specialize in events reserved for outdoor season. Krechyk, who broke the KU school record in the weight throw twice during the indoor season and won the ultimate title at the Big 12 Championships, will now compete in her specialty event; the hammer throw. Krechyk, a semester-transfer from Grodno, Belarus was her nation’s junior champion in the event and was the U-23 national champion while competing for Yanka Kupala State University last year. Krechyk will throw in the first event of the day at 10 a.m.
Bergmann will also compete in her area of expertise for the first time this season, as the freshman from Concordia, Kan., will throw the javelin at 5 p.m. on Saturday. After going undefeated in the event her senior year of high school, which included a gold medal at the Nike Outdoor Nationals, Bergmann was ranked as the No. 1 javelin thrower in the nation coming out of high school.
Other Jayhawks who will look to make an impact in Fayetteville include senior Eric Fattig, junior Jordan Scott, sophomore Keith Hayes and freshman Andrea Geubelle.
Fattig, who is entering his final season of eligibility for KU, will compete in the long jump, triple jump and 4×100-meter relay. Geubelle will also compete in the horizontal jump events, where she looks to build off her triumphs during the indoor season. The freshman from University Place, Wash., finished third in the triple jump and fifth in the long jump at the Big 12 Indoor Championships, and earned a spot at indoor nationals as the only freshman appearing in the triple jump.
Hayes, who had a highly successful freshman season in 2009, is aiming for a positive debut in the 110-meter hurdles, which is scheduled for 3:40 p.m. The Wichita, Kan., native was one of four Jayhawks to qualify for the NCAA Outdoor Championships last season. He ran a career-best time of 13.73 at the Midwest Regional Championships; a time that only one other athlete in school history has topped.
Scott, a two-time indoor All-American pole vaulter, will return to the outdoor arena after taking a redshirt season in 2009. The Watkinsville, Ga., native made history during indoor season, as he won the Big 12 title for the fourth-consecutive year. His event is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m.
Several distance runners will also make their debut in the Crimson and Blue at the Razorback Spring Invitational. Freshmen Tessa Turcotte and Brenna Farren will compete in the 3,000 meters, while Natalie Becker, Kyra Kilwein and Allie Marquis will suit up for the 3,000 and 1,500 meters. Freshman Kathleen Thompson, who was a consistent runner for KU during the 2009 cross country season, will also compete in the 1,500 meters.