Women Cap NCAAs with Top-10 Finish
Women Cap NCAAs with Top-10 Finish
Williamson's scoring performance, along with Akela Jones' fourth-place finish also in the high jump tallied 13 points for the women on the day, boosting their total to 28 points overall. The ninth-place finish marked the women's first finish in the national top-10 since the 2002 squad placed fifth in Baton Rouge, Louisianna. This year's squad also tallied the most points and individual top-five finishes, four, since that group in 2002 and the four overall scoring performances -- Jones: heptathlon and high jump | Williamson: high jump | Dani Winters: shot put -- marked the second-straight season the Wildcats have recorded at least four scorers at the national meet.
Head coach Cliff Rovelto said finishing in the top-10 was a great accomplishment for a group that entered the meet ranked No. 10 in the country.
"Placing in the top-10 is quite an accomplishment for our program," Rovelto said. "Even moreso when you look at the other programs and coaching staffs that ended up in the top-10 -- it's very humbling."
Tying for ninth-place with the Longhorns, K-State tied with Texas for the highest finish by a Big 12 women's program at this year's NCAAs.
Williamson Leads Impressive K-State Showing in High Jump
Kim Williamson repeated history for the Wildcats, finishing runner-up in the high jump almost exactly a year after Alyx Treasure did the same at Hayward Field in 2014. Clearing a personal best 1.90m/6-02.75, Williamson battled her way to second-place, just missing out on the national title in three tries at 1.93m/6-04.25.
Williamson said clearing 1.93m was her goal entering today's competition and even though she missed out on the height, she was happy with her performance.
"I wasn't nervous. I was focused on getting [1.93m], that's all I was aiming at," Williamson said. "I just wanted to go over the bar, that's all I was thinking about -- focus and get over. Even though I fell short, it was still a good experience. I'll get it next time."
Opening competition at 1.72m/5-07.75, Williamson was locked in from the get-go, clearing the first five bars all on the first attempt before needing three to get over at 1.90m. She competed back and forth for much of the day with Georgia's Leontia Kallenou, as the two were tied for first following clearances at 1.87m/6-01.50. At 1.90m, Kallenou would bow out on three tries, while Jeannelle Scheper of South Carolina, the eventual national champion, took the lead with a clearance on her first attempt. The two misses for Williamson at 1.90m proved to be the difference, as neither her nor Scheper could notch a clearance at 1.93m.
Williamson's personal best clearance moved her to No. 2 in school history, a little less than two inches off the school record of 1.94m/6-04.50 set by Gwen Wentland in 1995, while the back-to-back runner-up showings in the high jump at NCAAs by the K-State women marked the first time since Texas accomplished the feat in 2012.
Said Rovelto, "Obviously, Kim jumped very well. I also thought she had three good attempts at 1.93m. She's been a great competitor all year and only will continue to get better over the coming years as she comes to understand training more and continues to learn more about the event."
Joining Williamson in competition were Akela Jones and Alyx Treasure, with Jones in particular tying her personal best clearance of 1.87m/6-01.50 to place fourth-overall. Treasure meanwhile closed out her K-State career placing 12th to earn second team All-American honors in the event -- her fifth career All-American nod between indoors and outdoors.
The first team honors for both Williamson and Jones marked the first time in women's program history a pair of teammates have earned first team All-American status in the event at NCAAs.
Kelly Makes NCAA Debut
Making the first NCAA appearance by a Wildcat women's athlete in the triple jump since 2005, Alyssa Kelly took 22nd in the event with a wind-aided leap of 12.29m/40-04. The junior from Overland Park, Kansas, recorded the final mark on her second leap of the day. Earning All-American honorable mention for her effort, Kelly's NCAA appearance was an impressive one considering she qualified at West Prelims with a personal best mark of 12.81m/42-00.50 and finished the regular season ranked 67th in the event.
With the 2015 season officially over, select Wildcats will shift their focus to a bevy of summer meets including the USA and USA Junior Championships at the end of June and the IAAF World Championships in August. To keep up with K-State Track and Field in summer competition, visit www.k-statesports.com.
NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships (Day IV)
T9: K-State, 28 pts.
2: Kim Williamson, 1.90m/6-02.75 -- Personal best & 2nd-best mark in school history
4: Akela Jones, 1.87m/6-01.50 -- Ties personal best & T-5th-best in school history
T12: Alyx Treasure, 1.77m/5-09.25
22: Alyssa Kelly, 12.29m/40-04w (2.7)