Bonds Shines on Final Day of Kansas Relays
April 18, 2009
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Lauren Bonds qualified for the NCAA Regional Championships and Nickesha Anderson had two valiant second-place finishes to lead the Kansas Jayhawks, while Alan Webb wowed the crowd with a sub-four minute mile to highlight the fourth and final day of the 82nd Annual Kansas Relays Saturday at Memorial Stadium.
Bonds qualified for the next month’s regional championships with a victory in the women’s 1,500 meters, following the lead of teammate and pacesetter Kellie Schneider before breaking away from the field. Bonds, a junior from Hutchinson, Kan., picked up the title with a career-best time of 4:27.36.
Anderson had an impressive day in both the 4×100-meter relay and the women’s invitational 200 meters. The senior from Hanover, Jamaica, ran the anchor leg of Kansas’ 4×100, running down three competitors before falling just short of the comeback victory. Anderson and Kansas finished in second with a season-best time of 45.80, just behind Florissant Valley CC (45.49). Anderson also ran the third leg of the 4×400-meter relay, giving KU the lead heading into the anchor leg before the Jayhawks settled for a second-place finish. Their time of 3:43.13 was a season-best.
In the most anticipated invitational event of this year’s Relays, Nike’s Alan Webb ran a sub-four minute mile to win the Glenn Cunningham Invitational Mile. Webb posted the second-best mile time in Kansas Relays history (3:58.90) to defeat Peter Van Der Westhuizen, who also ran it in under four minutes, by .64 seconds (3:59.54).
Former KU standout Charisse Bacchus brought back old memories in winning the McKnight-Blake Long Jump. Of all of her accomplishments as a Jayhawk, the Kansas Relays title had evaded her until today, where she posted a winning jump of 6.24 meters (20-05.75 ft.). Bacchus defeated another former Kansas standout, Crystal Manning. Manning, Friday’s triple jump champion, was the long jump runner-up with a mark of 6.18 meters (20-03.50 ft.).
Keith Hayes was quick out of the blocks in the finals of the men’s 110-meter hurdles, making a run at the victory before being edged by Cloud County CC’s Jeffery Julmis in a photo finish. Hayes, a freshman from Wichita, Kan., who had previously qualified for regionals, lowered his season-best, regional qualifying time to 14.05. Julmis’ winning time was 14.02. Freshman Keyen Porter was right behind in third place, finishing with a time of 14.35.
Reggie Carter continues to hit his stride in the 400 meters, recording Kansas’ best time of the season Saturday (48.08) to place second behind Dickinson State’s Sean Pickstock. Carter, a junior transfer from Morgan State University, also ran a solid third leg in the men’s 4×400-meter relay to help the Jayhawks to a runner-up finish. KU’s time of 3:12.45 was second to Seton Hall’s 3:11.41. Along with Carter, KU’s 4×400 team consisted of Jacob Breth, Jarrell Rollins and Keron Toussaint.
Sha’Ray Butler ran a season-best time of 1:01.07 in the 400-meter hurdles to finish in third place. The senior from Lancaster, Texas, also ran the second leg of KU’s second-place finishing 4×400-meter relay team, featuring Butler, Anderson, Shayla Wilson and Charity Stowers.
With the completion of the Kansas Relays, the Jayhawks are set to head to the Drake Relays next week, from April 23-25. A select few KU athletes will head to the Penn Relays, which take place April 21-25.