Jayhawk men cap 90th Kansas Relays with quadrangular crown

Senior Whitney Adams took home her second-straight KU Relays 800 meter title.

90th Kansas Relays
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LAWRENCE, Kan. –Another Kansas Relays is in the books after celebratory fireworks concluded the 90th edition of the historic meet Saturday night at Rock Chalk Park. The hometown men produced a day filled with strong performances that contributed to KU’s victory over Southern Illinois, California and UMKC in the scored quadrangular. Of the 19 quad events, Jayhawk males claimed gold in 11 of them, helping the squad amass a final total of 231 points to win its second quad title in three years. The Jayhawk women’s team took silver in the quad competition for the second year in a row after accumulating a score of 181.5.
The men’s discus throwers headlined the day after KU senior Mitch Cooper and junior Nicolai Ceban took first and second in the event. Cooper’s winning mark of 61.77 meters (202-8) was the No. 3 throw in school history and moved him to No. 2 among NCAA Division I discus throwers this season. Cooper also added six points to the team total after placing third in his first-career javelin competition with a mark of 59.95 meters (183-6). A Jayhawk has now won three-straight Kansas Relays discus titles, each of which have been won by either Cooper or Ceban.
In addition to stellar outings by the throwers, junior Barden Adams contributed nine points when he posted a winning mark of 16.08 meters (52-9¼) in the triple jump. The victory made Adams the first KU male to claim the Kansas Relays triple jump title since 1985.
Highlighting the women’s field events was the pole vault, with junior Laura Taylor setting a new personal best after vaulting over 4.22 meters (13-10). The clearance moved her to No. 4 on KU’s all-time list and tied her for No. 15 in the country this season. Sophomore Alexis Romero claimed the silver with a personal-best vault of 4.17 meters (13-8¼), contributing seven points to the team total.
On the track side, freshman Quentin Dancer and senior Whitney Adams were the top Jayhawks of the day. Dancer stole the spotlight after winning both the 100- and 200 meters in his first-career Kansas Relays. Dancer started by sprinting through the 100-meter finish in 10.47, only to return to the track minutes later to clock in at 21.39 for the victory in the 200 meters. He also ran a leg of the Jayhawks’ second-place finishing 4×100-meter relay, making him the KU men’s highest scorer of the day, contributing 19.75 points on his own.
Never challenged in the half-mile race, Adams won the 800 meters for the second-straight year at the Kansas Relays. She broke the tape in 2:08.72 to claim the first outdoor 800-meter win of her senior season.
The Jayhawk men ended the day in fitting style with a dominant victory in the 4×400-meter relay. The quartet of sophomore Ivan Henry, senior Strymar Livingston, junior Tre Daniels and freshman Isaiah Cole took the relay title with a time of 3:08.72, outpacing runner-up California by nearly seven seconds as the fireworks show signaled the end of the meet.
Other event winners on the men’s side included senior Jacob Morgan, who set a new personal best of 14:19.59 in the 5,000 meters; sophomore Hussain Al Hizam in the pole vault with his clearance of 5.34 meters (17-6¼); sophomore Bryce Richards, who won the 1,500-meter race by .01 seconds (3:53.57) after coming from behind in the last 100 meters; freshman Bryce Hoppel in the 800 meters (1:50.73) and freshman Cody Johnson in the 400-meter hurdles with his personal-best time of 52.43.
Jayhawk women who ended the day on the top step of the podium included junior Courtney Coppinger, who claimed her second-straight KU Relays Steeplechase title after clocking a personal-best time of 10:30.03; sophomore Shaylyn Stallbaumer, who won the women’s quad javelin title for the second year in a row with a throw of 46.89 meters (153-10) and the 4×400-meter relay squad of freshman Mariah Kuykendoll, Adams, senior Adriana Newell and sophomore Nicole Montgomery who passed the baton around in 3:39.66.
The Jayhawks stay on their home track next weekend when they host the Rock Chalk Classic on Saturday, April 29. Field events are scheduled to begin at 11 a.m., with races on the track kicking off at 4 p.m.
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