Kansas opens outdoor campaign with ESU Spring Invite
|ESU SPRING INVITATIONAL|
|March 23, 2019|
|Francis G. Welch Stadium|
LAWRENCE, Kan. – The Kansas men’s and women’s track & field teams are set to open the 2019 outdoor season at the Emporia State Spring Invitational in Emporia, Kansas, on March 23.
FOLLOWING THE ESU SPRING INVITATIONAL
Live results for the ESU Spring Invitational will be available through BlackSquirrelTiming.com.
HOPPEL WINS INDOOR 800 NATIONAL TITLE
Kansas junior Bryce Hoppel won the first indoor national championship in the 800-meter run in KU men’s history with a 1:46.46 clocking in the finals at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Birmingham, Alabama, on March 9.
Hoppel’s time broke his own school record and was a Birmingham CrossPlex facility record, and was the No. 7 time indoors in the world this year.
The national title completed an undefeated indoor season for Hoppel, as he won all seven of the individual races he ran in.
BRADFORD, AL HIZAM EARN FIRST TEAM ALL-AMERICA
Kansas freshman Zach Braford and senior Hussain Al Hizam each earned First Team All-America honors in the pole vault at the NCAA Indoor Championships. Bradford and Al Hizam finished fifth and sixth, respectively, to earn the first team honors.
LOKEDI NAMED BIG 12 WOMEN’S PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Kansas senior Sharon Lokedi was named the 2019 Big 12 Indoor Track & Field Women’s Performer of the Year, which marks the second-consecutive year the Eldoret, Kenya native took home the honor. Lokedi’s win was largely in part to her earning the women’s high point award at the Big 12 Championship and being a part of two school records (5,000m and DMR) during the course of the year. Lokedi followed up her Big 12 Performer of the Year award with a Second Team All-America honor at the NCAA Indoor Championships to conclude her collegiate career.
KU WINS SIX TITLES AT BIG 12 INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS
The Kansas track & field teams are coming off a successful meet at the Big 12 Indoor Championships, where six titles were won by Jayhawks.
Senior Sharon Lokedi picked up crowns in both the 5,000 and 3,000-meter runs, Bryce Hoppel and Marleena Eubanks swept the 800-meter races while also breaking school records, Gleb Dudarev won his second conference weight throw crown and the men’s distance medley relay team of Ethan Donley, Cody Johnson, Bryce Hoppel and Dylan Hodgson took home the Big 12 title in a surprise finish at the end of the first day of competition.
HOPPEL, EUBANKS TAKE HOME REGIONAL HONORS
Kansas cleaned house with the USTFCCCA Midwest Region track awards, announced Friday, March 1. Middle-distance runners Bryce Hoppel and Marleena Eubanks were named the Men’s and Women’s Midwest Region Track Athletes of the Year, respectively, after both athletes broke the 800-meter school records at the Big 12 Championships.
FRESHMAN GOT UPS
Freshman Rylee Anderson is quickly moving up the Kansas women’s high jump charts. Anderson was undefeated through her first four collegiate meets, but suffered her first defeat at the Tyson Invitational. The “loss” was anything but a loss for the rookie, though, as she recorded the same mark as the winner, which happened to be a personal-best on her way to a second-place finish in the invitational section of the event. Anderson cleared 1.80 meters (5-10.75 ft.) to become the No. 4 performer in KU women’s history and the height is No. 9 on the all-time performers list at Kansas. The Longmont, Colorado native tied the KU women’s freshman record, set by Ann O’Connor in 1985, of 1.82 meters (5-11.5 ft.), with a second-place finish at the 2019 Big 12 Indoor Championships. Anderson concluded her rookie indoor season with a Second Team All-America honor at the NCAA Indoor Championships, finishing 13th overall.
DUDAREV NAMED BIG 12 CO-MEN’S ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Kansas redshirt sophomore Gleb Dudarev was named Big 12 Co-Men’s Athlete of the Week on February 6. The weekly honor marks the fifth of Dudarev’s career and comes after his season debut at the Texas Tech Open in which he won the weight throw with a mark of 23.08 meters (75-8.75 ft.). The throw is currently the No. 4 mark in the NCAA this season and No. 4 on the KU all-time performance list.
PAIR OF VAULTERS BREAK ANSCHUTZ PAVILION RECORD
Senior Hussain Al Hizam and freshman Zach Bradford broke the Anschutz Sports Pavilion facility record in the men’s pole vault at the Jayhawk Classic on January 26. Al Hizam and Bradford cleared 5.58 meters (18-3.75 ft.), bettering the previous record of 5.57 meters (18-3.25 ft.) set by Jake Albright in December of 2017.
KANSAS WOMEN POST RECORD-SETTING SEMESTER IN THE CLASSROOM
The Kansas women’s track & field team were one of four KU teams to record a team-best semester in the classroom, leading to a department-record 3.11 all-sports combined GPA in the Fall 2018 semester. The KU women’s track & field team recorded a program-best 4.42 GPA for the Fall semester. The Kansas men’s team was able to notch a 2.91 GPA.
REDWINE SIGNS NO. 3 MEN’S CLASS
According to Track & Field News, 19th-year head coach Stanley Redwine’s 2018 KU men’s recruiting class is the No. 3 signing class is the nation. Coming in behind Georgia and Texas A&M, the Jayhawks made the top-5 for the first time ever.
Highlighting the recruiting class is Zach Bradford, a pole vaulter out of Bloomington, Illinois, who represented the USA at the 2018 IAAF World U20 Championships in Tampere, Finland, where he earned a silver medal. Bradford posted the No. 8 all-time high school pole vault mark, clearing 18-2.5 ft. his senior season.
Also highlighting the signing class are Treyvon Ferguson, a triple jumper hailing from Hershey, Pennsylvania and Patrick Larrison, a thrower from Moore, Oklahoma.
Kansas track & field has a big weekend following the ESU Spring Invitational, as the teams will split up for meets across the country. A portion of the KU teams will travel to Austin, Texas for the Texas Relays (March 27-30), while some of the Jayhawk throwers will trek to Gainesville, Florida for the Florida Relays (March 28-30). Some of the Kansas distance runners will compete at the Stanford Invitational in Palo Alto, California (March 29-30) and the remaining KU athletes will travel to Tulsa, Oklahoma for the Oral Roberts Invitational (March 30).
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