K-State to Make First Trip to Albuquerque

This Week For Kansas State
Roger Cox Multis
Thursday-Friday, January 25-26, 2007
Albuquerque Convention Center Albuquerque, N.M.

Dan DeHart Invitational
Friday-Saturday, January 26-27, 2007
Albuquerque Convention Center Albuquerque, N.M.

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State will spend this weekend in Albuquerque, N.M., for the inaugural Roger Cox Multis and the Dan DeHart Invitational, Jan. 25-27 at the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Teams joining the Wildcats in the competition this weekend include Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Kansas and Texas Tech.

Last Time Out
Kansas State secured seven event titles as the Big 12 Conference defeated the Mountain West Conference in the first-ever Conference Challenge, 223-144, on Saturday afternoon at the Devaney Sports Center.

The Big 12 Conference was represented by Kansas State, Missouri and host Nebraska, while the Mountain West Conference was represented by Air Force and Colorado State. Since the Big 12 had one more team, a secret draw was held on Friday night to determine which two schools would score in each event with the third school held out of the scoring for that event. K-State scored a total of 64 points on the afternoon, with the Wildcat women recording 36 points and the men tallying 28.

Senior Kaylene Wagner won her fourth straight high jump title, tying her season-best and Big 12 leading clearance of 6-00.50.

Sophomore Laci Heller stood atop the women’s weight throw podium for the first time this season with a winning toss of 62-05.50.

Sophomore Scott Sellers won his first collegiate triple jump competition with a distance of 48-04.00.

With Sellers competing in the triple jump, senior Lamar Garrett took advantage of the opportunity to win his first career high jump title as a member of the Wildcats. The product of Oklahoma City, Okla., cleared a height of 6-09.50 to win the event.

On the track, junior Morgan Bonds and senior Monique Coleman won the 800- and 200-meter runs, respectively. Bonds broke the tape in the 800 in an NCAA provisional time of 2:08.95. It is her second win at the distance this season and the Hutchinson, Kan., product has won every race she has run this season (600-yard, 800-meter and 1,000-meter).

Coleman captured her first win in the 200 this season in a K-State season-best clocking of 24.74. The Richmond, Calif., native held the previous Wildcat best of the 2007 of 25.08 from last weekend’s Arkansas Invitational.

The women’s 4x400-meter relay team of Coleman, freshman Laura Smith, senior Candice Mills and Bonds crossed the tape in first with a K-State season-best of 3:50.14.

Early Projections See Women in Top-10
The early success for the K-State women’s team has garnered the attention of the early season projections for the NCAA Indoor Championships. In this week’s Trackwire 25, the Wildcat women check in at seventh with a projection of 22 points.

The Trackwire 25 projects a hypothetical score for the NCAA meet, factoring in injury reports and other variables supported by information gathered from coaches and NCAA-qualfying competitions across the country. This projection is generated by scoring the Dandy Dozen, a power ranking of the top 12 athletes and relay squads in each NCAA event.

Four Wildcats Among Top-Five of Dandy Dozen
Four K-State athletes appear among the top-five in this week’s Dandy Dozen, calculated by Trackwire. The four athletes are senior Kaylene Wagner in the women’s high jump (second), senior Candice Mills in the long jump (second), sophomore Scott Sellers in the men’s high jump (third) and sophomore Loren Groves in the women’s weight throw (fourth).

Other Wildcats in the top-10 are junior Laci Heller in the women’s weight throw (eighth) and junior Morgan Bonds in the women’s 800-meter run (10th).

The factors used to build the Dandy Dozen include quantitative values that measure performances in past major competitions (such as conference championships, national championships and Olympic competition), durability and freedom from injuries, demonstrated ability to compete well in multiple rounds of competition, ability in other events, head-to-head competition with other top athletes, and personal or seasonal bests.

Wagner Wows’em
Senior Kaylene Wagner has started her K-State career with four straight wins in the high jump after an entire season on the sidelines. The product of Goleta, Calif., and a transfer from Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo won the women’s high jump during the KSU All-Comers meet on Dec. 9 and again at the Conference Challenge with an NCAA Indoor Championship automatic qualifying clearance of 6-00.50.

To put this height in perspective, K-State had not seen a female surpass six feet in the event since Morgan High cleared 6-00.75 during the KSU-KU-MU Triangular on Jan. 24, 2004.

Wagner continued her streak during the KSU Invitational with a clearance of 5-10.75 and at the Arkansas Invitational with a winning height of 5-11.25.

16 and Counting for Heller
Sophomore Laci Heller won her 16th career weight throw title on Saturday at the Conference Challenge. The Meriden, Kan., native has surpassed the NCAA Indoor provisional mark in 19 of her 22 career meets. Heller has surpassed 60 feet in every competition during her career.

The win for Heller is her first in the event since winning the 2006 Big 12 Indoor weight throw title on the same ring in the Devaney Sports Center.