👟 Pair of Jayhawks Punch Tickets to NCAA Championships on Wednesday

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Kansas track & field’s Zach Bradford and Clayton Simms punched their tickets to the NCAA Outdoor Championships on day one of the NCAA West Preliminary in Fayetteville, Arkansas on Wednesday, both qualifying in the men’s pole vault.

Bradford, of Bloomington, Illinois, qualified for his third-career NCAA Outdoor Championship with a clearance of 5.39m (17-8.25 ft.), which won him the West Regional. Simms, a freshman out of Watson, Louisiana, will compete in his first NCAA Outdoor Championship by clearing 5.29m (17-4.25 ft.) on Wednesday.

Both Bradford and Simms entered the pole vault competition at 5.19m (17-0.25 ft.), at which both Jayhawks cleared on their first attempt. Bradford went on to clear on first attempts at 5.29m (17-4.25 ft.) and 5.39m (17-8.25 ft.), clinching his spot at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.

After missing on his first attempt at 5.29m (17-4.25 ft.), Simms battled back and cleared on his second attempt. After missing on three attempts at 5.39m (17-8.25 ft.), Simms clinched a spot based on misses.

Along with two pair of Jayhawks moving on to the NCAA Outdoor Championship, Kansas sophomore Michael Joseph advanced to the quarterfinal in the men’s 400 meters on Wednesday.

Out of lane three, Joseph ran a strong race to finish in 46.17 and earn an auto-qualifying spot in his heat. Joseph will race in the 400 meter quarterfinal on Friday at 6:50 p.m. with a shot at the NCAA Championships on the line.

In the men’s shot put, junior Patrick Larrison neared a personal best with a throw of 18.44m (60-6 ft.), which placed him 24th overall. Sophomore Oleg Klykov placed 28th in the men’s hammer throw with a toss of 61.87m (203-0 ft.).

Kansas will be back in action on Thursday for day two of the NCAA West Preliminary, beginning at 6 p.m. with the start of the women’s pole vault. The 2022 NCAA Outdoor Championships will take place in Eugene, Oregon on June 8-12.