Tarasova Advances to NCAA Championships
May 29, 2009
NORMAN, Okla. – Zlata Tarasova advanced to the NCAA Championships in the hammer throw, while Keith Hayes and Nickesha Anderson qualified for the finals in the 110-meter hurdles and 200 meters, respectively, to lead Kansas on a sunny Friday at the NCAA Midwest Regional Track & Field Championships at the John Jacobs Track and Field Complex in Norman, Okla.
Tarasova’s first attempt was good enough to advance her to the 2009 NCAA Outdoor Championships in Fayetteville, Ark., as she recorded a mark of 55.87 meters (183-04 feet) to finish in fifth place. The senior from Togliatti, Russia, scored four points for the Jayhawks with her performance.
“We’re excited that Zlata made it through,” Kansas head coach Stanley Redwine said. “The goal for the meet was to come in and make the NCAA meet, and she stepped up and did what she had to do to make it. We’re definitely excited about that.”
Hayes obliterated his personal best in the 110-meter hurdles to take third in heat two and fifth overall among the three heats. The freshman from Wichita, Kan., crossed the finish line in a time of 13.73 to qualify for Saturday’s finals.
“I’m excited that I PR’d and made the final after not making the final at conference,” Hayes said of his prelims performance. “I’m trying not to get too overwhelmed about my PR, because I still have the finals tomorrow. I’m just focused now. I’m ready to take care of business tomorrow and try to hopefully get to NCAAs.”
“It’s really exciting that Keith went in and PR’d in the time that he did,” Redwine added. “Tomorrow is a big day for him. The top-five finishers in the finals automatically advance to the NCAA Championships, and we think he can do that.”
Freshman Keyen Porter did not qualify for the finals in the 110-meter hurdles as he finished 17th overall in the prelims with a time of 14.52 in heat one.
Anderson, still battling a lingering injury, fought through it to run a time of 23.45 and advance to Saturday’s finals in the 200. The senior from Hanover, Jamaica, placed third in heat three and seventh overall in the prelims. Anderson fell short of the regional finals in the 100 meters as she ran a time of 11.53 in heat one of the prelims. She placed third in her heat and 11th among the three heats. Anderson is still hopeful for an at-large spot for the NCAA Championships in the 100 meters despite not making the finals in Norman.
“Nickesha didn’t advance to the final in the 100, but we still think she has a great opportunity to make it to the NCAA Championships based on her previous time this year,” Redwine explained. “Hopefully by then she will be 100 percent. She made it to the final today in the 200, and hopefully we’re able to get her well and ready to go so she can compete at 100 percent.”
Along with Hayes and Anderson, several Jayhawks will be competing in event finals Saturday.
“Tomorrow is a really big day for us,” Redwine said. “We have two young ladies in the shot put in Emily Reimer and Stephanie Horton, Brian Bishop in the discus, Kirk Cooper in the pole vault, Corey Fuller in the triple jump, Lauren Bonds in the 1,500 meters and then the people that made it to the finals today, so it should be a really good day for us.”
Live results Saturday from Norman can be found at www.deltatiming.com. A complete recap can be found at www.kuathletics.com upon completion of the day’s events.