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K-State dominates home invite

By The Mercury

With most of the college track and field scene getting under way this weekend, the Kansas State Wildcats hosted the KSU Invitational, putting together a dominant performance for both the men and women in a triple dual meet against Oklahoma State, Tulsa and UMKC.

The Wildcats combined to win 19 events and had a number of performances that rank among the best in school history.

The highlight of the day may have been the first heat of the women’s 60-meter hurdles, as the Wildcats rolled in the event. K-State’s combined events specialists claimed the top four spots in the race, and all four of those runners ran personal best times that all rank in the Top 10 in school history.

Redshirt freshman Erica Twiss sped her way to the finish line in 8.57 seconds, crushing her time of 8.86 seconds during the Carol Robinson Winter Pentathlon in December. The time ranks fourth in school history.

Senior Ryann Krais ran her fastest collegiate time in the event, clocking in at 8.62 seconds to move into a tie for fifth in school history. Junior college transfer Richelle Farley ran 8.66 to rank seventh, and senior transfer Mairead Murphy finished in 8.67 seconds to stand eighth on the list.

K-State showed strength in the weight throw as well with the women taking the top three spots. Senior Ali Pistora won the event with her throw of 18.27 meters (59-11.25). Jessica Carter and Chelsie Bonds both threw 18.18m (59-07.75), which marks a personal record for Carter and puts her 10th on the school list.

The Wildcats also saw the men’s combined events athletes put impressive performances together. Mantas Silkauskas ran 6.75 seconds in the 60 meters, which is just .01 off his PR. He also was not far off his personal best in the shot put, marking 12.43m (40-09.50). The group of Devin Dick, Tomas Kirielius and Tony Granillo also shined for the Wildcats in multiple events, preparing for the heptathlon down the road.

Freshman high jumper Alyx Treasure was able to build off of her debut performance of jumping 1.78m (5-10.00) in December. On Saturday, the Canadian leapt 1.82m (5-11.50) and now stands seventh in school history.

K-State head coach Cliff Rovelto said he was pleased with what he saw out of his team on Saturday. He believes the Wildcats showed depth in a number of events and is excited to see more improvement as the season progresses.

Junior thrower Jacquelyne was strong in her first indoor action, as she won the shot put by more than seven feet. Her toss of 15.29m (50-02.00) ranks seventh in school history as well.

“I thought all things considered it was a good day,” Rovelto said. “We had a number of PR’s, but I was most impressed by some of the real quality marks that were turned in.

“Things like Mantas in the 60, Alyx in the high jump, the depth of quality in the women’s hurdles and the women’s weight throw. I think we are on the right track and I look forward to watching our entire team compete in a couple of weeks at Iowa State.”

The men were without three All-Americans, as high jumper Erik Kynard, hurdler Jeffrey Julmis and sprinter Martynas Jurgilas all did not compete on Saturday. They will all three compete at the Bill Bergen Invitational in two weeks at Iowa State. K-State will host another meet next Saturday, as the Wildcat Invitational is set for an 11 a.m. start in field events and 3:30 p.m. for running events.

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