Jayhawk Track and Field Prepares for 2011 Big 12 Outdoor Championships
May 11, 2011
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
Kansas’ men’s and women’s track and field teams will travel to Norman, Okla., May 13-15 for the 2011 Big 12 Outdoor Championships held at the John Jacobs Track Complex on the campus of the University of Oklahoma. One of the most prestigious meets in the nation, this year’s championships will feature a combined 17 teams ranked in the men’s and women’s USTFCCCA Top 25 rankings.
The Jayhawks enter the meet ranked 17th in the country on the men’s side and 25th in the national rankings on the women’s side. KU is looking to improve on its 2011 Big 12 Indoor Championship finishes. The Jayhawk women finished eighth in the indoor meet, while the men were 11th.
Senior pole vaulter Jordan Scott and sophomore thrower will spearhead the KU men’s team’s effort in Norman. Scott is the 2010 Big 12 Outdoor Champion in the pole vault and was the runner-up in the event in 2008. He currently leads the Big 12 and is third in the NCAA with his height of 5.50 meters (18-00.50 ft.) Finley enters the meet ranked first in the shot put and second in the discus in the conference. He is also the defending Big 12 Champion in both the shot put and the discus. Mason FinleyAdditionally on the men’s side, freshman Johann Swanepoel enters the meet with the third-best mark in the javelin and senior Brian Bishop
is ranked seventh in the conference in the discus. Other KU men ranked in the Big 12 top 10 entering the meet are Kyle Clemons (ninth, 400m), Donny Wasinger (seventh, 1,500m), Austin Bussing (sixth, 3,000m steeplechase), Nick Canton (eighth, high jump), Alex Bishop (seventh, pole vault), Cooper Merrill (10th, pole vault), Darryl Trotter (sixth, triple jump) and Scott Penny (fifth, hammer throw).
On the women’s side, KU will look to sophomore Francine Simpson and freshman Jessica Maroszek in the field and Diamond Dixon and Rebeka Stowe
on the track to guide the Jayhawks. Simpson enters the meet ranked fourth in the conference in the long jump. Her mark of 6.42 meters (21-00.75 ft.) ranks seventh in the NCAA. Marozsek also ranks in the top-five of the Big 12 as she ranks third in the discus with her toss of 54.21 meters (177-10 ft.). Her mark is good for eighth in the NCAA’s West Region.
Dixon enters the Big 12 Championships with the conference’s third-best time in the 400 meters as she was clocked at 52.96 in her last race at the Arkansas Twilight (May 6), while Stowe ranks second in the 3,000-meter Steeplechase prior to the league meet. She ran a personal best and KU record 9:53.12 in her last outing, which was at the Payton Jordan Invitational (May 1).
Other Jayhawk women entering the meet in the top 10 in the conference are Natalie Becker (10th, 3,000m Steeplechase), Jaci Perryman (sixth, pole vault), Demi Payne (eighth, pole vault), Andrea Geubelle (fifth, triple jump/seventh, long jump), Heather Bergmann (third, javelin) and Rebecca Neville
The 2011 Big 12 Championships will kick-off Friday, May 13 with the 10,000 meter races and will conclude Sunday, May 15 with the running of the 4×400 meter relays.