Wildcats Distance Runners Close Drake Relays Strong

Armando Del Valle

April 28, 2012

DES MOINES, Iowa - After high winds and cool temperatures made for a difficult day at the track on Friday, the winds calmed on Saturday for much better conditions on the final day of the 103rd Drake Relays and the Kansas State track and field team came away with a handful of strong performances.

To open the day for the Wildcats, freshman Fernando Ramon posted a new personal best in the 3,000 meter steeplechase. He held steady around 10th place through the first half of the race and then moved his way up to eighth over the final few laps to finish eighth. He clocked in at 9:09.38 which shaves about half a second off his previous best and keeps him at eighth on the all-time list at K-State.

The final running event of the day for the Wildcats was the men's 800 meters with Armando Del Valle up against a strong field No. 15-ranked Blake Irwin of Missouri. Del Valle drew an inside lane assignment and was able to push his way along the rail over the final 250 meters to move past some other runners in the final turn. He crossed the line in 1:50.74 to finish fourth.

The men's distance medley relay team combined to run 10:01.84 and finish 13th. It was a young group running with sophomore Kyle Hanson running the first 1,200 meters before handing to freshman Chris Campbell to run the 400, and senior Jacob Davies handed to freshman Logan Smith to run the final 1,600 meters.

Senior Tomaz Bogovic narrowly missed making the final in the men's hammer throw coming in ninth place. He had a toss of 191-03 (58.30m). He was the only thrower in action Saturday after the Wildcats had a busy day Friday in the field events.

One former Wildcats competed at the Drake Relays as Amy Mortimer took on a highly talented field in a special invitational women's 1,500 meters. She crossed the line in 4:14.71 to finish fourth trailing former NCAA, USA and world champion Jenny Barringer-Simpson.

K-State also had a small group of throwers compete at the ESU Mid-Week Open on Wednesday. The Wildcats came away with three wins and one runner-up finish.

The Wildcats took first place in the men's shot put with sophomore Ryan Hershberger posting a new career best with a toss of 58-02.00 (17.73m). The mark also moves him into eighth in school history. Hershberger claimed second in the discus as well as he had a throw of 159-10 (48.71m). Alex Roe was not far behind taking fourth place at 158-11 (48.43m). Jessica Carter continued the success in the discus as she tallied another win for K-State with a PR of 166-10 (50.85m). That mark also put her among the best in school history at 10th on the list.

Jake Darrington tallied K-State's other win as he was tops in the men's javelin. He posted a mark of 201-05 (61.39m). It was Darrington's best throw as a Wildcat, improving his previous best by more than 10 feet.

K-State had a large group in the women's hammer throw led by Chelsie Bonds in fifth place. Carter took fifth and Jacquelyne Leffler finished sixth. Sara Henault posted a new PR and took 11th while Jenna Yoder was in 14th. For the men, Ryan Johnson finished fifth and Roe was in sixth.

The Wildcats are not scheduled to compete at any meets next week at this moment. They will be hosting the Big 12 Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the newly renovated R.V. Christian Track Complex on May 11-13. Tickets are on sale now for the exciting meet that will feature some of the best teams in the nation and a number of athletes with a chance to represent their home countries at this summer's Olympic Games in London.

Drake Relays
3000m Steeplechase
8: Fernando Ramon, 9:09.38 - PR, 8th school history

13: 10:01.84 - Hanson, Campbell, Davies, Smith

Hammer Throw
9: Tomaz Bogovic, 191-03/58.30m

4: Armando Del Valle, 1:50.74

ESU Midweek Open Results
Men's Shot Put
1: Ryan Hershberger, 58-02.00/17.73m - PR, 8th school history

Men's Discus
2: Ryan Hershberger, 159-10/48.71m
4: Alex Roe, 158-11/48.43m

Women's Discus
1: Jessica Carter, 166-10/50.85m - PR, 10th school history
Jacquelyne Leffler, Foul

Women's Hammer Throw
3: Chelsie Bonds, 178-00/54.25m
5: Jessica Carter, 176-01/53.67m
6: Jacquelyne Leffler, 173-03/52.80m
11: Sara Henault, 156-04/47.65m - PR
14: Jenna Yoder, 147-01/44.83m

Men's Hammer Throw
5: Ryan Johnson, 168-02/51.27m
6: Alex Roe, 162-06/49.54m

Men's Javelin
1:Jake Darrington, 201-05/61.39m - PR