Three Jayhawks Advance to Finals of NCAA Championships

June 11, 2008


DES MOINES, Iowa – Senior Crystal Manning led a group of threeUniversity of Kansas track and field athletes who advanced through the qualifying rounds on day one of the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Wednesday at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa.

Manning had an impressive and short day in the women’s long jump. The Terrell, Texas, native qualified for the finals of the event on her first jump of the afternoon. Manning’s effort of 6.56 meters (21 feet, 6¼ inches) was a career-best. If the mark had not been wind-aided it would have matched former teammate Charisse Bacchus’ effort at the 2006 NCAA Championships as the second-best jump in Kansas history.

“I just tried to stay focused on my task,” Manning said of her leap. “I’m just jumping. Usually, I have the triple jump and other events on the same day, but today I was able to just focus on the long jump.”

Senior Egor Agafonov also qualified for the finals on his first attempt. His initial hammer throw sailed 67.24 meters (220-07 ft.). Agafonov will compete for a national championship in the hammer throw on Friday at 5:30 p.m.

Junior Nickesha Anderson advanced through the first round (11.76) and the semifinals of the 100 meters (11.66). She ran into a strong headwind on each occasion. She will compete in the finals of the event on Friday at 8:35 p.m.

Against the top competition in the nation and the damp afternoon conditions of Johnny Bright Field, junior Zlata Tarasova’s season came to an end in the women’s hammer throw. Tarasova finished with a toss of 55.07 meters (180-08 ft.).

Jordan Scott finished his sophomore season in the men’s pole vault with a jump of 5.10 meters (16-08.75 ft.) while senior Ashley Brown and junior Sha’Ray Butler were unable to advance in the 400-meter hurdles. Brown, the KU record-holder in the event, will compete at the Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore. in two weeks.

Senior Kate Sultanova finished her illustrious career as a Jayhawk in the women’s pole vault. The school record-holder in the indoor pole vault and four-time Big 12 champion finished at 4.00 meters (13-01.50 ft.), one height away from making the cut.

Qualifying for many events continues on Thursday. Manning will be the only Jayhawk competing in the finals of an event with the long jump at 5 p.m. (CST). Senior Julius Jiles is in the first round of the men’s 110 hurdles at 4:50 p.m. and junior Stephanie Horton competes in the women’s shot put at 7:15 p.m. Anderson is scheduled to compete in the 200 meters at 5:10 p.m. (first round) and 6:35 p.m. (semifinals).

CBS will show live coverage of the championships from 3-5 p.m. (CST) on Saturday while the CBS College Sports Network (check local listings) will show live coverage on Friday from 7-9 p.m.

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KU Results – 2008 NCAA Championships:


Hammer Throw: Agafonov (67.24m)

Pole Vault: 16-Scott (5.10m)


100 Meters: Anderson (11.76p, 11.66s)

400-Meter Hurdles: 23-Brown (1:00.12), 27-Butler (1:03.25)

Hammer Throw: 27-Tarasova (55.07m)

Long Jump: Manning (6.56m)

Pole Vault: 16-Sultanova (4.00m)