Kansas set to close indoor home slate with Jayhawk Classic
|January 25-26, 2018|
|Live Stream (FREE)|
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas track & field is back competing in Anschutz Pavilion for the final indoor home meet of the 2018 season, the Jayhawk Classic, scheduled to take place January 25-26. Thursday’s action begins at 2 p.m. with heptathlon events and Friday events are scheduled to start at 9 a.m. A live stream of Friday’s evening section will be available to fans that can’t make it to Anschutz Pavilion. The stream is scheduled to begin at 4:45 p.m. on KUAthletics.com.
HEADLINERS IN ACTION
Kansas will have 10 All-America honorees (six men, four women) competing at the Jayhawk Classic.
Six-time All-American Nicolai Ceban is slated to make his season debut, competing in the shot put for his final indoor home meet at Anschutz Pavilion.
Two-time All-American Barden Adams will be competing in the long jump, as well as outdoor pole vault First Team All-American Hussain Al Hizam, and Second Team All-Americans Tre Daniels, Jaron Hartley and Ivan Henry.
For the Kansas women, All-America honorees Nicole Montgomery, Zainab Sanni and Laura Taylor will be lacing up the spikes at the Jayhawk Classic, as well as LaTyria Jefferson, who will be making her season debut.
Five Jayhawks are slated to make their debuts in the Crimson and Blue at the Jayhawk Classic. For the men, freshman thrower George Evans will compete in the shot put and David-Marquis Patrick is slated to run the 600 yards and in the 4×400-meter relay.
For the Kansas women, freshman thrower Alexandra Emilianov will make her debut in the shot put, while transfers Marleena Eubanks (Central Arizona College) and Megan Paule (Creighton) will hit the track for the 600 yards and 3,000-meter run, respectively.
JAYHAWK MEN RANK NO. 20 IN WEEK ONE POLL
With the release of the week one USTFCCCA poll, the Kansas men’s team found itself ranked No. 20, down nine spots from its No. 11 ranking in the preseason poll that came out two weeks prior.
The Jayhawk men reached as high as No. 6 in last year’s indoor rankings, but did not see their names in the top-25 until the week two poll was released.
PERFORMING ON THE TRACK AND IN THE CLASSROOM
Kansas Athletics released departmental and program GPAs from the Fall 2017 semester on Tuesday, January 23, where the women’s track & field team was one of nine programs that earned a 3.0 GPA or higher on the semester at 3.37.
TALENTED IN MANY WAYS
For the past 13 years, the Kansas Student-Athlete Advisory Committee has put on the JayRock Variety Show for Kansas student-athletes to display their talents outside of their respective sports. At this year’s JayRock, which was themed “Jayhawks Got Talent” the Kansas track & field team performed a choreographed dance that went on to win the show.
FOUR EVENTS, FOUR VICTORIES
Kansas sophomore Bryce Hoppel has competed in four individual events this indoor season and has yet to be defeated. Hoppel opened his season at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular with wins in the 800 meters and mile run, before repeating the accomplishment a week later at the Mark Colligan Memorial in the same events.
Hoppel’s mile time of 4:09.95 at the Mark Colligan Memorial proved to be a career-best time in the event.
ADAMS SHOWING HIS BOUNCE
Kansas senior Barden Adams has been in mid-season form all year and has won the last three events he has competed in. Adams won the long jump and triple jump at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular, hitting an indoor-best-tying mark of 16.01 meters (52-6.5 ft.) in the triple jump, which ranked No. 2 in the nation at the time. The West Orange, New Jersey product won the triple jump again at the Mark Colligan Memorial a week later, notching a mark of 15.91 meters (52-2.5 ft.). Currently, Adams is the No. 4 performer in NCAA Division I this season, with his triple jump leaps ranking seventh and 12th, respectively, in the nation.
Once again, the Kansas track & field team boasts one of the most talented and deepest pole vault crews in the entire country. The Tom Hays-coached group currently has five athletes (two men, three women) ranked in the top-25 in the nation. Nick Meyer and Hussain Al Hizam are tied for 13th in the NCAA at 5.35 meters (17-6.5 ft.) on the men’s side, while Laura Taylor, Andrea Willis and Alexis Romero currently rank Nos. 6, 13 and 21, respectively, on the women’s front.
Taylor is the No. 4 performer in Kansas women’s indoor history, moving into the spot with her win at the Mark Colligan Memorial, clearing 4.28 meters (14-0.5 ft.). Earlier in the season, Willis moved ahead of Taylor to become the No. 5 performer and currently sits at No. 6 with a clearance of 4.17 meters (13-8.25 ft.) at the Bob Timmons Challenge. Romero ranks No. 7 with a clearance of 4.15 meters (13-7.25 ft.) at the Tyson Invitational last year.
MULTIPLE JAYHAWKS RANK IN NATION’S TOP-30
Kansas currently has 11 athletes or relay teams that rank in the nation’s top-30 in their respective events. Of those 11 top-30 marks, six rank in the top-16. Any athletes or relay teams that rank in the top-16 following February 25, 2018 will automatically qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships that take place March 9-10 in College Station, Texas.
Junior Sharon Lokedi is the highest-ranked Kansas women’s athlete in NCAA championships event, ranking No. 4 in the 5,000-meter run. For the Jayhawk men, senior Barden Adams ranks No. 4 in the NCAA in the triple jump, making him the highest-ranked male athlete for KU.
In non-NCAA Championship events, junior Nicole Montgomery holds the fastest women’s time in the nation in the 600-yard run, clocking a time of 1:20.62 at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular on January 13.
MONTGOMERY NAMED BIG 12 ATHLETE OF THE WEEK
Junior Nicole Montgomery was named Big 12 Women’s Track & Field Athlete of the Week on Wednesday, January 17 for her performance at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular in Manhattan, Kansas on January 13.
Montgomery recorded a personal best time in the 600-yard run on her way to a meet record and her third win in as many years in the event at the Sunflower Triangular.
Her time of 1:20.62 marked the fastest in the NCAA this season, and ranks as the fifth-fastest time in Kansas women’s history, while moving her No. 4 on the KU women’s all-time top performers list.
Montgomery was also a member of the mixed 4×400-meter relay team that won the event by a wide margin. The Kansas team finished in 3:27.42, with the next-closest team, Kansas State, finishing in 3:31.44.
KANSAS NOTCHES THREE MEET RECORDS, 14 VICTORIES AT SUNFLOWER TRIANGULAR
The Jayhawks set three meet records on their way to 14 victories and a second-place finish at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular on January 13. Freshman Honour Finley clocked a meet record-tying time of 55.49 in the 400-meter dash, while junior Nicole Montgomery broke her own meet record from 2016 in the 600-yard run with a time of 1:20.62. Senior Barden Adams tied his indoor career best in the triple jump with a mark of 16.01 meters (52-6.25 ft.) to also break a meet record.
Adams also won the men’s long jump, and was joined by Bryce Hoppel as the only Jayhawks that were able to earn two individual victories, as Hoppel won the mile and the 800-meter run. His 800-meter time currently ranks first in the Big 12 and 15th in the nation.
GIUSTI LOOKS TO MOVE UP KU IN RECORD BOOK
Senior Nick Giusti recorded a career-best performance in the 60-meter hurdles at the KU-KSU-WSU Triangular (Jan. 13), clocking in at 8.16 seconds and trimming two-hundredths of a second off his time. Already Kansas’ No. 8 performer in the event, Giusti didn’t move up the charts, but set the tone for the remainder of his final season. To become the No. 7 performer all-time at Kansas, Giusti will have to run faster than Keyen Porter’s time of 8.06 in 2009.
LOKEDI CRUSHES HER OWN SCHOOL RECORD
Junior Sharon Lokedi utilized her redshirt season during the 2017 indoor campaign, but the Eldoret, Kenya native didn’t miss a beat in her first race of the 2017-18 indoor season. Lokedi traveled to Boston, Massachusetts for the Boston University Season Opener on December 2, where she toed the line against some of the nation’s best in the 5,000-meter run. Lokedi scorched her way to a time of 15:39.05 in the event, demolishing her previous school record of 15:57.95 set at the Iowa State Classic in 2016.
The Jayhawks will travel to Lexington, Kentucky for the Rod McCravy Memorial at Nutter Field House on February 3, hosted by the University of Kentucky. The meet is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.
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