Kansas ready for NCAA Outdoor Championships

NCAA Outdoor Championships
  June 6-9
  Eugene, Ore.
  Hayward Field
  University of Oregon
  Meet Central
  Meet Schedule
  Live Stream (ESPN3)
  Live Results

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas track & field will conclude the 2018 NCAA outdoor season with 16 total entries in the NCAA Outdoor Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, June 6-9.
ESPN Networks will broadcast the entirety of the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, with daily television broadcasts, as well as an online stream via WatchESPN.com. Live results will be available through Flash Results at FlashResults.com.
Wednesday, June 6 // 4:30 p.m. – 8 p.m. (ESPN2) // 12:20 p.m. – 8 p.m. (ESPN3)
Thursday, June 7 // 4 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. (ESPN2) // 9:50 a.m. – 7:45 p.m. (ESPN3)
Friday, June 8 // 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m. (ESPN) // 12:20 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. (ESPN3)
Saturday, June 9 // 3:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. (ESPN) // 11:20 a.m. – 5:15 p.m. (ESPN3)
*Broadcast schedule and networks subject to change
Kansas track & field has a total of 16 entries at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, with nine on the men’s side and seven on the women’s.
The Kansas men have three track entries and six field entries, with Bryce Hoppel (800m), Dylan Hodgson (steeplechase) and the 4×400-meter relay team hitting the track at Historic Hayward Field while Barden Adams (triple jump), Hussain Al Hizam (pole vault), Nick Meyer (pole vault), Gleb Dudarev (hammer throw), George Evans (discus) and Nicolai Ceban (discus) will be competing in field events.
Sharon Lokedi (5,000m, 10,000m) and Courtney Coppinger (steeplechase) are the only Kansas women’s track entries, while LaTyria Jefferson (long jump, high jump), Andrea Willis (pole vault) and Alexandra Emilianov (discus) will be busy in the field.
Both of the Kansas track & field squads enter the 2018 NCAA Championships as the No. 15-ranked team in the nation. The Kansas men’s team has hovered around the 15-spot all season, while the Jayhawk women catapulted themselves up the rankings into the top-20 midway through the outdoor campaign.
After winning the 2018 NCAA Indoor Championship with a school record and Gilliam Indoor Stadium facility record vault of 5.70 meters (18-8.25 ft.), Kansas junior Hussain Al Hizam has vaulted his way to his second-career outdoor conference title and new outdoor personal-best of 5.63 meters (18-5.5 ft.) this season. Al Hizam enters the NCAA Outdoor Championships as the No. 6-ranked male in the country.
If Al Hizam is able to capture the outdoor crown, he would be the first Jayhawk in history to win both an indoor and outdoor title in the event. He would be just the third KU male to win the outdoor pole vault crown, and the first since Jordan Scott in 2010.
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 three times.
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 Kansas Relays, 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. 7). 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.
Dudarev won his second conference hammer throw title and broke Baylor’s Clyde Hart Track & Field Stadium facility record with a toss of 72.37 meters (237-5 ft.) at the Big Outdoor Championships, and most recently became the No. 3 performer in the history of the NCAA West Preliminary Round meet, finishing as the top performer with a mark of 73.09 meters (239-9 ft.).
Entering the NCAA Championships as the top performer in the men’s hammer throw, Dudarev looks to become the first Jayhawk to win a national championship in the event.
If Kansas’ qualifying list for the 2018 Outdoor Championships says anything about the Jayhawk track & field program, it says the future is bright. Of the 16 entries for KU, six will feature underclassmen, while another four feature juniors that will return to the team next year.
Kansas distance runner Sharon Lokedi will conclude her collegiate outdoor career this weekend at the NCAA Championships. Lokedi will still have one year of eligibility remaining in cross country and indoor track & field, but this weekend will mark the end of one of the most prolific outdoor careers in Kansas history.
As things currently stand, Lokedi has earned two outdoor First Team All-America honors, both in the 10,000 meters, and has won five outdoor Big 12 titles (three in 10,000m, two in 5,000m). The Eldoret, Kenya native will have a chance to earn two more First Team All-America honors and will try to pick up a national title along the way, as she enters the championships as the No. 4-ranked 10,000-meter runner and the No. 6-ranked 5,000-meter runner in the NCAA this season.
No matter what happens this weekend, Lokedi will end her collegiate outdoor career as the school record holder in both the 5,000 and the 10,000, having broke both records multiple times throughout her career.
In just the 2018 outdoor season alone, a Kansas school record has been broken 10 different times. Pair that with four times during the indoor season that school records fell and it makes for one extremely successful 2017-18 campaign.
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. 4 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, before breaking it again at the NCAA West Preliminary Round in Sacramento, California with a time of 15:27.09. Her two school records in the outdoor season brings her total to five between both the indoor and outdoor campaigns, 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 four meets this season and broke his own school record in the hammer throw in two of them. He first broke his own 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.
Senior Courtney Coppinger ran a 16-second personal best time in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the NCAA West Preliminary Round to break the school record in the event. She took down Rebeka Stowe’s 2012 time of 9:52.82 to set a new school best at 9:51.28.
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.
The Kansas throwers, coached by Andy Kokhanovsky, had a strong showing at the NCAA West Preliminary Round, earning four total entries at the NCAA Championships. Sophomore Gleb Dudarev, the NCAA leader in the hammer throw, earned his second trip to the outdoor national meet, and senior Nicolai Ceban earned his fourth trip to Eugene, qualifiying in the discus. Freshmen George Evans and Alexandra Emilianov each earned their first trip to the NCAA Championships in the discus, setting the tone for impressive careers at Kansas.
Nationally recognized as one of the top pole vaulting schools, Kansas qualified three vaulters to the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships. Junior Hussain Al Hizam and senior Nick Meyer qualified for the men’s team, while sophomore Andrea Willis will make her first appearance at the national championships for the Kansas women.




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