Ward Haylett Invitational Up Next for Kansas Track and Field

May 4, 2006


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The University of Kansas men’s and women’s track and field teams will head west on I-70 to Manhattan, Kan., for this weekend’s Ward Haylett Invitational on May 6. The Jayhawks are coming off several solid performances from the Drake Relays and the Cardinal Invitational. Sophomore Egor Agafonov re-broke the KU hammer record with his toss of 233-0 while four distance runners regionally qualified in their respective events at Stanford. The Ward Haylett will serve as the final tune-up before KU travels to Waco, Texas, for the Big 12 Outdoor Championships on May 12-14.

Drake Relays/Cardinal Invitational Review…

Competing at the Drake Relays, sophomore Egor Agafonov broke his own hammer record en route to winning his second competition of the season. His mammoth toss of 233-0 beat his previous KU best of 228-6 and was also good for the second-longest throw in the country so far this year. In the women’s hammer, freshman Zlata Tarasova’s throw of 177-7 was good for eighth.

For the second straight week, senior Sheldon Battle finished behind Nike representatives Christian Cantwell and Dan Taylor for third place in the men’s shot put. His toss of 65-11 3/4 was his best of the season as well as the second longest collegiate throw in the nation this year. The Jamestown, N.Y., native also had a fifth place result in the discus with a throw of 178-8.

Competing in the long jump, senior Charisse Bacchus finished in second place for the third consecutive meet. Her leap of 19-4 3/4 followed her performances at the Texas Relays on April 6 and the Kansas Relays on April 22.

Sophomore Crystal Manning turned in a solid second-place finish in the triple jump. Her leap of 41-4 1/2 bested her previous career record of 41-3 3/4.

Senior Denita Young’s throw of 160-4 in the javelin moved her into fifth place on KU’s all-time performance list, moving past KU great Candace Mason. The toss was also good for sixth in the event and tops on this season’s performance list.

At the Cardinal Invitational, all five Jayhawks that competed ran personal bests in their event, with four of them regionally qualifying. Cameron Schwehr (3:43.64) qualified in the 1,500-meter run while teammate Erik Sloan did so in the 3,000- meter steeplechase (8:59.17). In the 5,000-meter run, sophomores Paul Hefferon (13:59.47) and Colby Wissel (14:04.37) both qualified as well.

Men’s Team Ranked…

The University of Kansas men’s track and field team is ranked at No. 20 in the country with a projected 14 points in the new Trackwire.com national poll. The Jayhawks are currently tied with Kansas State and South Carolina for the ranking. The Trackwire 25 projects a hypothetical score for the NCAA meet, factoring in injury reports and other variables supported by information gathered from coaches and NCAA-qualifying competitions across the country. Kansas’ projection this week was 19 points for the NCAA Indoor Championships. This projection is generated by scoring the Dandy Dozen, a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event.

Jayhawks in the Dandy Dozen…

This week’s edition of the Trackwire Dandy Dozen showcases mainstays Sheldon Battle and Egor Agafonov and newcomers Abby Emsick and Denita Young. Battle is ranked second in the shot put and 12th in the discus while Agafonov moved up to third in the hammer. Emsick debuted at 10th in the discus and Young is 11th in the javelin. The Dandy Dozen is a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event. The list is used in compiling Trackwire’s weekly top 25 team rankings.