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Krais looks to build on last year

By Brady Bauman

It would be an understatement to say Ryann Krais has posted her share of accomplishments since she transferred to Kansas State a year ago from UCLA.

In her first year as a Wildcat track athlete, the then-junior has broken and set K-State school records and ended the season as a NCAA champion in the heptathlon. She also went on to win the USA Championship in the heptathlon and finished third in the prestigious Thorpe Cup in the summer.

“It’s nice to have a year of Coach (Cliff) Rovelto’s training under my belt,” Krais said before Tuesday’s practice. “I can compare where I was at from last year to this year. So far, it’s been all good news… I’ve started out the season much farther along than last year.”

As Krais — along with the rest of her teammates — prepares for Saturday’s Wildcat Invitational, the approach seems to be nice and steady.

“Indoor is really a nice preparation for the outdoor season,” Krais, who runs the pentathlon indoor, said. “I’m doing everything I can to the best I can during the indoor season, but my training is oriented for later.”

With the 2012 London Olympics just around the corner, Krais, who finished 6th in the NCAA indoor championships in the pentathlon, looks to be in the mix for this summer’s Olympic trials.

It’s a possibility that she admitted is on her mind.

“It’ very much on my mind,” she said. “The cool thing, is that it’s on a ton of people’s minds, on this team. People are all pushing each other and it’s not even that you have to say it everyday, you are out here and (know) what you are working for.

“It’s nice that the atmosphere is like that… that so many people are focused on doing big things at the trials.”

Rovelto, who is in his 20th season as the head coach of K-State track and field, said Krais increased her mass and adjusted well to it.

“Training wise, she’s done well,” he said. “Throughout the Fall it’s increased somewhat, as far as volume, but not real significant from where it was from a year ago.

“She’s put on some mass and has gotten stronger. It’s a little bit of an adjustment to get used to that, but all in all, those changes she’s handled really well. She’s much further along.”

Rovelto said he has no worries about Krais trying to duplicate her success from a year ago.

“For the people that continue to get better, they look at the whole thing as a process and it’s not an issue at all,” he’ said. “If they get caught up in a result, it’s more of an issue. I don’t think that’s the case with her and I don’t think that’s the case with the better athletes in our program. They bought in that it’s a process.

“There’s never any point that they felt that they ‘arrived’ or that they are ‘there’, regardless of what they accomplished.”

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