Conley Claims Long Jump Title on Day 2 of Big 12 Outdoor Championships

Big 12 Outdoor Championships
Cyclone Sports Complex // Ames, Iowa

Senior Nick Giancana finished fourth in the high jump with a personal best clearance of 7’3″.
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AMES, Iowa – A year after coming less than an inch shy of her first conference championship, junior Sydney Conley earned redemption after winning the long jump title on day two of the Big 12 Championships inside the Cyclone Sports Complex. The win was the first league title of Conley’s career and marked the third time in four years a Jayhawk was victorious in the Big 12 long jump.
After the second day of competition the Kansas women remained in third place with 44.5 points. The Jayhawk men sit in fifth place heading into the final after amassing 33.25 points over the first eight events.  
Conley, who entered Saturday’s event as the conference’s top-ranked long jumper in 2015, validated that title by posting three of the competition’s six furthest marks. The Fayetteville, Arkansas product took the lead on her second attempt and didn’t relinquish it for the rest of the day. Her best mark came on her third trip down the runway, when she hit 6.48 meters (21’3¼”).
Conley’s win didn’t come without some nervous moments over the final three rounds of jumps, however. Kansas State’s Akela Jones, who won the Big 12’s indoor long jump title in February, unleashed two jumps that came within two inches of Conley’s best mark. But it wasn’t meant to be for the Wildcat as the Jayhawk’s third attempt remained good enough to win the gold.
The victory gave Conley her first conference title and was the third time a Jayhawk won the Big 12 long jump championship since 2012. Kansas has now earned seven conference titles in the horizontal jumps since 2005.
Senior Lindsay Vollmer also tallied a scoring performance for the second time in as many days. The All-American finished fifth in the long jump with 5.98 meters (19’7½”), which added four more points to the Kansas women’s team total.  
Nick Giancana used his final Big 12 Championship outing as extra motivation for the best high jump performance of his KU career. The senior out of Topeka, Kansas needed only two attempts to clear 2.21 meters (7’3″). The height was a new career-best for Giancana and moved him to No. 4 on Kansas’ all-time high jump chart. The performance eventually earned him a fourth-place finish in the event that saw the top-six finishers clear heights that rank eighth or better in the NCAA this year.
Fellow senior Austin Hoag also turned in a scoring performance at his final conference meet, posting a top leap of 2.11 meters (6’11”) to finish eighth overall.
For the third-straight year, Anastasiya Muchkayev added a scoring effort in the shot put. On her sixth and final attempt of the day, the junior heaved the 16-pound implement to a mark of 16.10 meters (52’10”) which elevated her from fifth to fourth-place overall. The throw was a season-best for Muchkayev and moved her inside the top-20 in this year’s West Region rankings.
Talia Marquez concluded her weekend strong as she competed on the second and final day of the heptathlon. Entering the day, Marquez stood ninth overall but tallied strong outings in the long jump (5.32m/17’5½”) and the javelin (28.12m/92’3″) to shoot up to eighth heading into the final event, the 800 meters. The redshirt freshman completed her half-mile race with the field’s second-fastest time at 2:18.83, which moved her up one more spot to seventh in the final heptathlon standings. Marquez’s final score of 4,807 was a career best and moved her to No. 10 on the school’s all-time performer chart.  
It was preliminary day on the track as the competitors looked to put themselves in position to score for in their respective event finals on Sunday. Kansas saw its athletes advance to event finals out of six of the seven prelims on the women’s side and four of the six prelims on the men’s side. Senior Josh Munsch was the fastest qualifier in the 1,500 meters after he won his heat in a time of 3:45.11. Vollmer posted a career best in the second event of her weekend in the prelim heats of the 100-meter hurdles. Vollmer crossed the finish line in 13.47 to earn the seventh qualifying spot in Sunday’s final.
Michael Stigler put himself in prime position to claim his fourth-straight Big 12 title in the 400-meter hurdles. The senior won his preliminary heat and turned in the fastest qualifying time after he crossed the finish in 50.30.
The final day of the 2015 Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Championships will kick off at 12 p.m., Sunday with the women’s high jump. Action from the track will begin at 3 p.m., with the running of the 4×100-meter relays. Stay updated on all the Jayhawks’ performances via the meet central page at and follow on Twitter, Instagram and Vine at @KUTrack. A complete recap, results and videos will be posted after the completion of the day’s events. The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.