RCW: Inside Track and Field 3.19

Get a quick look inside your favorite Kansas Jayhawk programs each week with Rock Chalk Weekly’s Inside Sports pages. Notable statistics, quick hits and the top social media posts get every Jayhawk fan up-to-speed and ready for another week of thrilling competition.

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The Jayhawk track & field teams secured their second-straight Sunflower Triangular title over in-state rivals Kansas State and Wichita State with a final score of 242 points. Kansas overcame a 28-point deficit early in the event to top second-place Kansas State by 11 points.


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  • Junior sprinter Jaron Hartley turned in the fastest 60-meter clocking by a Jayhawk in nearly a decade with is career-best performance Thursday. The Houston native leaned across the finish in 6.87 seconds, shaving .08 seconds off his previous best. The time marked the quickest by a Jayhawk since Aaron Thompson posted 6.75 at the KU-KSU-MU Triangular in 2006. Hartley’s time also ranks him fifth among Big 12 sprinters thus far in the 2017 season.
  • Sophomore Nicole Montgomery defended her Triangular 600-yard title with another stellar outing in the event. The Colorado Springs, Colorado product outpaced teammate Wumi Omare by three seconds to tally the victory, crossing the finish in 1:22.33. Montgomery’s time is the fastest in the NCAA to this point in the 2017 campaign.
  • Junior Nick Giusti had a career outing in the 60-meter hurdles en route to his first win as a Jayhawk in the event. Giusti sprinted through the finish in 8.18, nearly .3 seconds faster than his previous best. He out-leaned Wichita State’s A.J. Stevens by .04 seconds to pick up seven points for the Jayhawks. Giusti now sits at No. 8 on the Jayhawks’ all-time 60-meter list.
  • The women’s 4×400-meter squad remained undefeated this season with another victory Thursday. The team of Mariah Kuykendoll, Whitney Adams, Nicole Montgomery and Adriana Newell combined for another time that ranks among the fastest this year. Montgomery overtook the Kansas State squad on the third leg and never looked back, handing off to Newell who anchored the team home in 3:45.07.
  • Michael Melgares used a strong final kick in the 3,000 meters to tally his first win in the Crimson and Blue and cement the Jayhawks’ second-straight Triangular victory. The redshirt freshman separated himself from the rest of the pack midway through the race and never looked back, completing the 1.8 mile race in a new personal-best clocking of 8:26.95 and topping the rest of the field by nearly four seconds. Melgares’ win put the Jayhawks ahead by four points entering the final two events of the evening, a lead they would not relinquish.
  • Junior Barden Adams remained undefeated in the triple jump this season after picking up another win Thursday. Adams soared to 15.32 meters (50-3¼) on his second trip down the runway, a mark that bested the field by 18 inches. The West Orange, New Jersey native also turned in a runner-up performance and a personal record in the long jump. Adams hit 7.41 meters (24-3¾), again on his second attempt, to rewrite his career best by more than seven inches.
  • Freshman Chase Pennewell collected his first win as a Jayhawk with a strong effort in the pole vault. Pennewell cleared a season-best height of 5.10 meters (16-8¾). Five Kansas vaulters have now posted at least one vault five meters or better in 2017.
  • A small contingent of Jayhawk vaulters journeyed to Albuquerque, New Mexico to compete at the Martin Luther King Jr., Invitational on January 14. 
  • Senior Jake Albright won the men’s title with a clearance over 5.50 meters (18-0½). The vault was the best of his career indoors and moved him to No. 5 on the Jayhawks’ all-time indoor list.
  • Hot on Albright’s heels was sophomore teammate Paulo Benavides, who also turned in a career outing en route to a second-place finish. Benavides got over 5.45 meters (17-10½), which move him to ninth on KU’s all-time indoor vault list.
  • The Kansas track & field teams will journey to SEC country when they hit the road for the Rod McCravy Invitational, hosted by the University of Kentucky. The meet will be held Jan. 20-21 inside Nutter Field House in Lexington.

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