Jayhawks look for NCAA Championships bids at West Prelim
|NCAA West Preliminary Round|
|May 24-26, 2018|
|FloTrack Live Stream ($)|
|Men’s Start Lists|
|Women’s Start Lists|
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas track & field will have 41 entries at the NCAA Division I Track & Field West Preliminary Round in Sacramento, California, May 24-26, that will be looking to earn bids to the 2018 NCAA Championships in Eugene Oregon, June 6-9.
To follow the action at the West Prelim, live results will be available through FlashResults.com and a subscription-based live stream will be available via FloTrack.com.
The Jayhawks will have a total of 41 entries for the NCAA West Preliminary Round, with the men’s team earning 18 entries and the women’s team earning 23.
Sophomore Jedah Caldwell will be the busiest of all Jayhawks, earning spot in one individual event, the 400-meter dash, and two relays, the 4×100 and 4×400.
Three Kansas women’s team members earned two individual event entries. Senior Sharon Lokedi will run in both the 5,000 and 10,000 meters, junior LaTyria Jefferson will compete in long jump and triple jump, and freshman Alexandra Emilianov is entered in both the discus and shot put.
DUDAREV AMONG NATION’S ELITE
Kansas sophomore Gleb Dudarev has been nothing short of dominant in his second year donning the Crimson and Blue, and for that he has earned a spot The Bowerman watch list twice. The Vitebsk, Belarus native has competed in three meets, the Sun Angel Classic (April 5-7), the Kansas Relays (April 18-21) and the Big 12 Championship (May 11-13) and won the hammer throw at all three events.
Dudarev’s season opener at the Sun Angel Classic had him breaking his own school record with a throw of 74.35 meters (243-11 ft.), but it was his performance at the Kansas Relays that earned him national attention.
At the home meet, Dudarev became the NCAA leader in the hammer with a record-shattering heave of 78.04 meters (256-0 ft.), which ranked him No. 5 in the world at the time (he now sits at No. 9). The mark also made him the No. 5 performer in collegiate history and was the best in-season throw by a collegiate athlete since 2002.
In his most recent appearance, Dudarev won his second Big 12 Outdoor hammer throw title and broke Baylor’s Clyde Hart Track & Field Stadium facility record with a toss of 72.37 meters (237-5 ft.).
AL HIZAM LOOKS FOR SECOND NATIONAL TITLE
Junior Hussain Al Hizam will look to build off his Big 12 Conference record-breaking performance at the Big 12 Championship in Waco, Texas in hopes of winning his second national championship this year.
After winning the 2018 NCAA Indoor Championship with a school and Gilliam Indoor Stadium facility record vault of 5.70 meters (18-8.25 ft.), Al Hizam has vaulted his way to his second outdoor conference title and new outdoor personal-best of 5.63 meters (18-5.5 ft.), and currently ranks sixth in the NCAA.
BRIGHT FUTURE FOR KANSAS TRACK & FIELD
Of the 38 individual entries earned by Kansas student-athletes, 12 were achieved by underclassmen. For the Kansas men, sophomore Isaiah Cole (400 meters), sophomore Bryce Hoppel (800 meters), sophomore Cody Johnson (400 hurdles), freshman Kyle Rogers (pole vault), freshman George Evans (discus) and sophomore Gleb Dudarev (hammer throw) all earned regional marks.
For the Jayhawk women, sophomore Jedah Caldwell (400 meters), freshman Honour Finley (400 meters), sophomore Andrea Willis (pole vault), freshman Alexandra Emilianov (discus, shot put) and freshman Lea Riedel (shot put) will all be competing in Sacramento.
Among the list of underclassmen competing at the West Prelim, there are three individual school records held. Dudarev holds the school record in the hammer throw, while Emilianov broke the shot put and discus school records in her first season as a Jayhawk.
BIG 12 RECAP
For the first time since 1994, both Kansas squads finished in the top-three at the outdoor conference meet. Both teams finished in a tie for third at the 2018 Big 12 Outdoor Championships and a total of five individual titles were won by Jayhawks.
Senior Sharon Lokedi doubled in 5,000 and 10,000 meters, becoming just the second athlete in Big 12 history to win both races in back-to-back years, while sophomore Gleb Dudarev (hammer throw) and junior Hussain Al Hizam (pole vault) each won their second-straight outdoor conference titles, and freshman Alexandra Emilianov won the women’s discus crown.
BOTH JAYHAWKS SQUADS IN TOP-20
The Kansas men came in at No. 15 while the Jayhawk women ranked 19th in the week eight U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association national poll, released Monday, May 21.
SCHOOL RECORDS FALLING
In just the 2018 outdoor season alone, a Kansas school record has been broken eight different times. Pair that with four times during the indoor season that school records fell and it makes for one extremely successful 2017-18 season.
This outdoor season, senior Sharon Lokedi was first to break a school record by breaking her own mark in the 10,000 meters. The Eldoret, Kenya native ran a 32:21.19 10K at the Stanford Invitational to set the new program-best time. The mark currently ranks her No. 3 in the NCAA this season.
Lokedi also broke the school record in the 5,000 meters this outdoor season at the Kansas Relays, finishing first with a time of 15:42.76. Her two school records outdoors brings her total to five between both the indoor and outdoor seasons, as she broke the 5,000 and 3,000-meter records indoors and was a member of the distance medley relay team that broke the indoor school record.
Sophomore Gleb Dudarev has competed in three meets this season and broke his own school record in the hammer throw in two of them. He first broke his school record at the Sun Angel Classic with a throw of 74.35 meters (243-11 ft.) before his huge mark of 78.04 meters (256-0 ft.) at the Kansas Relays.
Freshman Alexandra Emilianov broke the school record in the shot put in her first time competing in the event in the outdoor campaign. Emilianov threw for 16.64 meters (54-7.25 ft.) at the National Relay Championships in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Emilianov then broke the school record in the discus at the Big 12 Outdoor Championship in Waco, Texas. She won the conference title with a throw of 60.24 meters (197-8 ft.) to write her name at the top of the school record books in the event.
Two lesser-ran relay school records fell this outdoor season as well, with the women’s sprint medley relay school record being broken at the Texas Relays by the quartet of Jedah Caldwell, Zainab Sanni, Nicole Montgomery and Marleena Eubanks with a combined time of 3:51.17. The women’s 4×800 school record was also broken this season at the National Relay Championships by Wumi Omare, Riley Cooney, Courtney Griffiths and Hannah Dimmick with a time of 8:41.64.
Senior Hussain Al Hizam is on the hunt to break the outdoor pole vault school record of 5.76 meters (18-10.75 ft.) set by Jeff Buckingham in 1983. Al Hizam broke the indoor school record on his way to a national championship with a clearance of 5.70 meters (18-8.25 ft.). His current outdoor season and career best is 5.63 meters (18-5.5 ft.), cleared on his way to winning his second Big 12 Outdoor crown.
This year, like many years in the past, assistant head coach Tom Hays’ pole vaulting groups are among some of the best in the nation. The Kansas pole vaulters earned a total of seven entries at the NCAA West Preliminary, with four men and three women making the cut.
Hussain Al Hizam, Nick Meyer, Paulo Benavides and Kyle Rogers will be competing for the Jayhawk men in Sacramento, while Laura Taylor, Andrea Willis and Alexis Romero will be representing the Crimson and Blue for the women.
Athletes and relay teams that finish in the top-12 of their respective events at the West Prelims will qualify for the NCAA Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, June 6-9.
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