Wildcats Excel at TCU Invitational

FORT WORTH, Texas - K-State Track and Field kicked off its outdoor season with a solid showing at the TCU Invitational in Fort Worth, Texas. Held at the Horned Frogs' Lowden Track Complex from March 19-20, the Wildcat men and women combined to rack up 16 top-five finishes, including top efforts in the 3000-meter, high jump, pole vault and javelin.

In the Field...

• In the javelin, Ivan Hartung and Danie Plank recorded victories on their respective men's and women's sides. Hartung, who earned second team All-American honors in the event last season, took first in his 2015 debut with a final throw of 62.39m/204-08. The senior Wildcat hit the mark on his first throw Friday morning. Joining Hartung in competition was junior-transfer Dwight Davidson, who made his K-State debut. A transfer from Cloud County Community College, Davidson marked a collegiate-best 58.81m/192-11 to place second - his previous career-high was 53.00m/173-11.

On the women's side, Plank opened her sophomore campaign taking first with a final throw of 44.76m/146-10. A native of Gardner, Kansas, Plank defeated the field by well over 30 feet en route to her third career victory in the event.

• Also picking up victories were Miles Bearden in the high jump and Megan Vanderpool in the pole vault. Bearden cleared 2.09m/6-10.25 on his second attempt to secure the victory, as he continued a recent stretch of strong performances in the event - the sophomore had cleared a personal-best 2.17m/7-01.50 at Big 12s to close out the indoor season. Bearden's counterpart of the women's side, Rachel Proteau, tied for fifth, clearing 1.60m/5-03.

In the pole vault, Vanderpool cleared 3.46m/11-04.25 to defeat the field of three. The freshman notched two victories in the event during the indoor season.

• The hammer throw trio of Sara Savatovic, Kale Mueller and Kyle Smith were the lone Wildcats to compete on day one, March 19, with Savatovic, most notably, taking second on the women's side. Coming off her second-straight Big 12 title in the weight throw, Savatovic chucked 58.42m/191-08 to finish second behind TCU's Paola Miranda (59.39m/194-10). Mueller, meanwhile, finished fifth for the men, hitting a personal best 48.47m/159-00 in the process - his previous high was 46.62m/152-11 set at last year's Wildcat Open.

• Rounding out the slew of top-five showings in the field were Zanri Van der Merwe in the long jump, Alyssa Kelly in the triple jump and Jason Coon in the shot put. In the horizontal jumps, Van der Merwe leapt 5.25m/17-02.75 for a fourth-place finish, while Kelly also took fourth in the triple jump by leaping 11.79m/38-08.25. Lastly, Coon in the shot put made his K-State outdoor debut, placing fifth with a final chuck of 15.31m/43-08.

On the Track...

• Leading the way for the Wildcats on the track was sophomore Colton Donahue, who took first overall in the 3000-meter run. Competing in the event for the second time in his career, Donahue clocked 8:48.10 for the victory - a near-nine second improvement from when he ran the event at this season's KSU-KU-WSU Triangular (8:58.49). Donahue's first-place finish came against a field of 14.

Terrell Smith and Kain Ellis both recorded second-place finishes in the 200-meter and 800-meter, respectively. Smith, who recorded program top-10 marks in both the 60-meter and 200-meter during the indoor season, clocked 21.30 (0.7) for the runner-up finish. Only fellow freshman Kevin Harris from Baylor ran a faster time than Smith at 21.26 (0.7).

For Ellis, he followed up a strong showing at Big 12 Indoors, where he scored in three separate events, to finish a narrow second behind Grant Copeland of Texas Arlington. Clocking 1:56.35, Ellis finished first in his heat, but saw Copeland eke out the win in the second heat, as the sophomore finished the race in 1:56.19.

• Finishing up the top-five finishes on the track were the men's 4x100 relay squad and the women's 4x400 squad. Both the men and women took third in their respective races. In the 4x100, the foursome of Dane Steen, Christopher Campbell, Terrell Smith and Ifeanyichukwu Otuonye clocked 41.33 seconds for their third-place finish, while Jordan Matthews, Keiteyana Parks, Joslyn Barnes and Sarah Kolmer teamed up to finish the 4x400 in 4:01.50.

What's Next?

K-State competes in its first split-squad action of the outdoor season, as one group heads to Austin, Texas for the Texas Relays on March 27-28, while the other competes in Emporia, Kansas, for the ESU Relays on March 28. For more information on the Wildcats' 2015 outdoor campaign, visit www.k-statesports.com.

TCU Invitational
Lowden Track Complex
Fort Worth, Texas

K-State Results

24: Alyssa Kelly, 12.71 (0.8)
28: Nija Collier, 13.04 (0.8)

2: Terrell Smith, 21.30 (0.7)
9: Dane Steen, 22.02 (0.3)
17: Kaneil Harrison, 22.56 (1.0)

10: Keiteyana Parks, 25.41 (0.8)
16: Jordan Matthews, 25.88 (2.0)
30: Zanri Van der Merwe, 27.25 (2.0)

--: Kevin Jantsch, DNF

2: Kain Ellis, 1:56.35

1: Colton Donahue, 8:48.10

12: Sarah Kolmer, 15.23 (0.6)
17: Joslyn Barnes, 15.53 (0.6)

8: Adam Deterding, 15.15 (1.8)

3: Steen-Campbell-T. Smith-Otuonye, 41.33

3: Matthews-Parks-Barnes-Kolmer, 4:01.50

High Jump
1: Miles Bearden, 2.09m/6-10.25

T5: Rachel Proteau, 1.60m/5-03

Pole Vault
1: Megan Vanderpool, 3.46m/11-04.25

Long Jump
4: Zanri Van der Merwe, 5.25m/17-02.75
7: Nija Collier, 5.00m/16-05

Triple Jump
4: Alyssa Kelly, 11.79m/38-08.25

Shot Put
5: Jason Coon, 15.31m/50-02.75
7: Adam Deterding, 11.92m/39-01.25

1: Ivan Hartung, 62.39m/204-08
2: Dwight Davidson, 58.81m/192-11 - Personal best

1: Danie Plank, 44.76m/146-10

Hammer Throw
5: Kale Mueller, 48.47m/159-00 - Personal best
--: Kyle Smith, FOUL

2: Sara Savatovic, 58.42m/191-08