K-State has solid day at final home meet

By The Mercury

It was a successful day at the track for the Kansas State Wildcats, coming away with five wins and 17 personal records, as well as a handful of top-10 marks in school history at the KSU Open.

The Wildcats saw improvement from their sprinters and pole vaulters for the second straight week, and the throwers had a strong showing to build momentum heading into next week’s Big 12 Championship.

The pair of Kyle Wait and Cameron Savage put on a display in the pole vault, as each improved their PR’s by a large margin to clear 5.20 meters (17-00.75) to take the top two spots.

Another highlight of the day came from another meet. Senior mid-distance runner Boglarka Bozzay went to compete in the Nebraska Tune-Up where she again dominated the field. Bozzay broke the school record in the 800 meters, clocking in at 2:05.16. The mark also was a new facility record for the Devaney Center. Bozzay now owns the facility record at Nebraska in the 800 and the 1,000. The time also ranks ninth in the NCAA this season.

Back at the KSU Open, Carlos Rodriguez ran his way to a win and improved his fastest time in the 60 meters, clocking in at 6.71 seconds. 

Samantha McKnight won the women’s 60 meters, as she also improved on her PR, crossing the finish line in 7.59 seconds.

Also for the sprinters, Martynas Jurgilas returned to form, running his fastest time of the season in 6.82 seconds to take second place in the final. Dane Steen also ran 6.91 seconds in the final for his fastest time and a fifth-place finish.

In the throwing events, Tomaz Bogovic posted his best throw as a Wildcat and was just a quarter of an inch off his personal best, winning the men’s weight throw at 18.64 meters.

Junior college transfer Ryan Johnson had his best throw since becoming a Wildcat in January, finishing second with his distance of 18.34 meters.

Chris Gattman finished third for the Wildcats with his best throw since transferring to K-State in January. He had a season-best mark of 17.88 meters.

Ryan Hershberger kept his consistently strong season going with a win in the men’s shot put with a new PR. He claimed the win with a toss of 17.83 meters.

The women’s throwers took spots 2-3-4 in the weight throw, led by Ali Pistora. Chelsie Bonds and Jessica Carter finished behind her with Chandra Andrews competing unattached and getting the win. In the shot put, Jacquelyne Leffler tallied another home with with her best toss of 14.75 meters.

The 60-meter hurdles was another strong event for K-State on Friday at Ahearn Field House. Junior college transfer Richelle Farley finished second, clocking in at 8.59 seconds for a new PR. Erica Twiss close behind at 8.61 seconds. Twiss ran 8.56 in the preliminaries for a new personal best. Tarique Hill ran a new PR for the men, finishing in 8.03 seconds in the preliminaries. He went on to run 8.11 in the final and finish fourth.

Freshman and Manhattan High product Sophia Alonso led all the way in the women’s 400 meters to get the win in 57.38 seconds. Edina Brooks ran it in 59.11 to take third place.

Another freshman took a win in a long sprint event, as Sarah Kolmer came from behind on the final stretch to beat senior Ryann Krais in the 600 yards. Kolmer clocked in at 1:24.51 for the victory and Krais finished in 1:24.86. It was Kolmer’s first time running the 600.

Jacob Davies ran his way to a meet record in the men’s 800 meters to tally another win for the Wildcats. Davies ran the race in 1:51.18, shaving nearly half a second off the previous meet record set in 1991.

A pair of Wildcats ran well in the 1,000 meters for the men to keep the success coming for the mid-distance runners. Kyle Hanson won with his time of 2:27.65, followed by Ryan Hershner in 2:31.69.

K-State travels to the Lone Star State next week for the Big 12 Indoor Track & Field Championships hosted by Texas A&M. Action gets underway Friday from Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium with the Wildcats looking to build on the momentum from Friday’s meet and improve on last year’s showing for the men and women.

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