Kyle Wait headlines Wildcats’ final day at NCAAs

By The Mercury

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Kansas State track and field team closed out the NCAA Division-I Indoor Championships on Saturday night with Kyle Wait highlighting the individual efforts by earning First-Team All-American in the pole vault.

The Wildcats leave the Southwest with one first teamer in Wait and three second-team All-Americans in Devin Dick, Alyx Treasure, and Erica Twiss.

In his final indoor championship meet, Wait turned in another All-American performance, as he tied for eighth in the men’s pole vault. The senior, along with five other vaulters, finished with a height cleared of 17-08.50, but it was Wait along with Washington’s Jax Thoirs, who got the All-American nods due to both athletes having the fewest missed attempts.

Wait, who won the Big 12 indoor title this season, made K-State history, as he is the second pole vaulter in school history to become a two-time All-American indoors. He’s now a three-time All-American overall. He will attempt to tie K-State great pole vaulter Doug Lytle’s four-time All-American status during this outdoor season.

Twiss closed out the indoor season in the pentathlon just as she had begun it, with a personal best.

Scoring 4,151 points, the junior made it four straight personal bests set in the pentathlon this season, as she placed 10th among a deep field that included the top two finishers, breaking the previous NCAA meet record of 4,540 points.

For Twiss, she continued her strong performance in the 60-meter hurdles and the long jump, as well as posting a career-best effort in the high jump.

She opened the pentathlon with the second-best overall time in the hurdles of 8.26 seconds, which was then followed up by her best performance in the high jump to date.

The Carrollton, Texas, native broke her personal best of 5-07.75 twice, as she cleared 5-08.00 first before finishing at a career-high 5-09.25.

It was a dominant performance that saw her fail to clear a height only four times, as she placed first in her respective flight.

After a setback in the shot put dropped Twiss all the way from fifth to 15th-place, she rebounded well in the long jump. Leaping a career pentathlon-best 19-08.25, Twiss improved her spot to 12th place as well as moved her up the K-State pentathlon long jump top 10 to third.

In the pentathlon’s final event, the 800 meters, Twiss closed out the multi-event running a time of 2:20.50 and finishing the day’s action 10th overall. Along with being a new personal best, her final point total of 4,151 points improved her standing in the K-State top 10 from seventh to fourth all-time.

Battling through injuries for much of his two days in competition, Dick put in a gutsy performance that saw him improve from a first-day finish of 12th-place to 11th place in the heptathlon.

The senior All-American finished the day with a score of 5,557 points and an indoor best effort in the pole vault.

After an 8.34 seconds effort in the hurdles kept him in 12th place to start the day, Dick looked in danger of falling to the bottom of the pack completely in the pole vault as his first two heights cleared both came down to his third and final attempts.

In both cases the Hutchinson native was able to prevail, though, eventually clearing a new season-best, as well as personal indoor-best height of 15-11.00 to make it five bars cleared.

The mark was good enough to improve his standing to 11th overall, as well as tying him for first in K-State heptathlon history. Dick closed out the heptathlon with a time of 2:59.32 in the 1,000 meters to secure 11th, a threes-spot improvement from last season’s NCAA indoor meet.

Dick closes out his indoor career with a Big 12 heptathlon title, as well as the fourth-best heptathlon score and top-10 marks in six of the multi’s seven events in school history.

Treasure, in her second-career appearance in the national indoors, finished tied for 10th in the women’s high jump, as she, along with five other jumpers, cleared a height of 5-10.00.

For Treasure, she opened the competition clearing the opening heights of 5-08.00 and 5-10.00 in one try each before being stopped in three tries at 5-11.25.

Despite narrowly missing out on advancing with nine other jumpers to 6-00.50, Treasure was able to tie for 10th with Northern Arizona’s Lauren Laszczak .

With the indoor season under wraps, the Wildcats will now shift their attention to the opening of the outdoor season this Thursday when they travel to Forth Worth, Texas.

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