Julmis Finishes 5th at NCAA Championship

EUGENE, Ore. - On the final day of the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship Jeffrey Julmis finished fifth to earn four points for the Wildcats. Julmis crossed the line in 13.61 seconds to nearly cut into his own school record set at the Big 12 Championship.

In a race that saw the heavy favorite Ronnie Ash from Oklahoma fail to push to the finish line after clearing the final hurdle and finish in third, Julmis closed in on the leaders over the last two hurdles to move up in the race to claim fifth place. He entered the NCAA Championship ranked fourth in the nation and third among Big 12 Conference competitors. He finished ahead of Nebraska's Lehann Fourie and Keiron Stewart from Texas. The athletes had to regain their focus for the race after South Carolina's Johnny Dutch was called for a false start and eliminated from the race, preventing Dutch from pulling the hurdle double after winning the 400 meter hurdles on Friday night.

Julmis is the first Wildcat to score in a hurdle event since Julius Mercer finished third in the 400 hurdles in 1983. He also should receive USTFCCCA All-America honors following the championship meet to make him the first K-State hurdler to receive All-America honors since 1997 when Travis Livingston finished 10th in the 110 meter hurdles. Julmis is the first Wildcat to score in the shorter hurdle event in 35 years when Vance Roland finished fourth in the 120 yard hurdles at the 1975 NCAA Championship. Julmis qualified for the NCAA Championship by clocking 13.59 at the NCAA West Regional setting the school record.

Head Coach Cliff Rovelto said Julmis had a very strong season that saw the junior college transfer make more of an impact on the Wildcat squad than expected in 2010.

"I think it's amazing what he's done in just coming here in January," Rovelto said. "He made a real commitment to training and improving, and I think he's done more than anticipated in his first year. He would be the first to tell you that he has done better than he thought he would in his first year at this level. I think the strides he made in his first year here, I think the long-term future is very bright for him."

The Wildcats finish the 2010 NCAA Championship with seven points to finish in a tie for 37th overall as a team. In addition to Julmis, freshman high jumper Erik Kynard finished sixth in the men's high jump on Friday to keep a streak of eight consecutive years of a high jumper scoring for the men's team alive. Moritz Cleve could not repeat his impressive performance in the decathlon from a year ago finishing 10th this year.

On the women's side, Beverly Ramos finished 10th Friday night in the 5,000M in a race that was incredibly tight down the stretch has just 1.52 seconds separated Ramos from the fourth-place finisher. Martina Tresch was the only other woman in the championship for K-State as she finished 16th in the 3,000M steeplechase to miss qualifying for the final by two spots.

Rovelto said although his Wildcats did not score as many points as they did in 2010, he still believes the future for K-State track and field is bright considering the youth of those who performed well throughout the season and the potential others on the squad have.

"I think with what Erik and Jeff did here this week and Moritz in addition to what we have coming back next year, I think we can have a large group of men who can come to this meet as elite athletes in their events and expect to get to finals," Rovelto said. "Tomas Kirielius and Mantas Silkauskas can be competitive in the decathlon, and Martynas Jurgilas can make the final in the 100 meters so I think on the national level we could have a strong team in the near future."

K-State Track & Field Quotes
Head Coach Cliff Rovelto

On Moritz Cleve - decathlon
For Mo to finish 10th and perform how he did when he was unable to practice at 100 percent for the last month, I think is a testament to the type of athlete he is. He broke a pole in the pole vault and when he came back and dominated the bar like he did on his next attempt - you see vaulters do that. You don't see decathletes recover like that and do that. I think he showed a lot of moxie to do that in the vault.

On Erik Kynard - high jump
I think Erik jumped well early. There are a lot of good high jumpers out there, and for him to be All-American both indoor and outdoor as a freshman is significant. The only freshman he lost to this week, also is the only high jumper he lost to head-to-head in high school. He will compete at Junior Nationals and if he does well there, he will compete at the Junior World Championships. So he's still got a couple big meets to compete in this year, and he has had a great freshman year for us.

On women's team potential
I think Martina Tresch ran a very good race. She was not far off her personal best time. She had a great year as a whole, and she's just a freshman. Occasionally, you have special freshmen, and I think Martina is special, and Sara Stoakes is special. With continued improvement from them and what we're bringing in, I think our women could be a very competitive team soon as well.

- k-statesports.com -