Five Wildcats Headed to NCAAs

This Week For Kansas State
NCAA Indoor Championships
Friday-Saturday, March 9-10, 2007
Randal Tyson Track Center Fayetteville, Ark.
Live Stats can be found at www.ncaasports.com
Meet broadcast live on www.ESPN360.com (Friday 2:30 - 9 p.m.; Saturday 4:30 - 9 p.m.)
 
 Friday, March 9 (K-State Athletes only)
 Field Events
 
2:30 p.m. Women's High Jump (Wagner) 
   
 Track Events
 4:30 p.m. Women's 800-meter Run - prelims (Bonds)

 Saturday, March 10 (K-State Athletes only)
 Field Events
 
2 p.m. Women's Weight Throw (Groves)
 4:45 p.m. Men's High Jump (Sellers)
 5:30 p.m. Women's Triple Jump (Schlachter) 
   
 Track Events
 6:35 p.m. Women's 800-meter Run - final (Bonds)

 Times are an approximation. Schedule is subject to change.

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State will put a cap on the 2007 indoor track and field season this weekend with the 43rd annual men’s and 25th annual women’s NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships in Fayetteville, Ark.

At last year’s NCAA Indoor Championships, the men garnered its highest finish since 1993 by placing 11th, while the women tallied a 35th.

K-State’s NCAA Championship Delegation
K-State will send the following five athletes to this weekend’s meet on the Randal Tyson Track Center: senior Kaylene Wagner (women’s high jump), junior Morgan Bonds (women’s 800-meter run), junior Marianne Schlachter (women’s triple jump), sophomore Loren Groves (women’s weight throw) and sophomore Scott Sellers (men’s high jump). This will be the first indoor championship appearance for Wagner, Bonds, Schlachter and Groves while Sellers makes his second straight appearance.

In the history of K-State track, the women have earned nine high jump All-American honors, eight in the triple jump, five in the weight throw and just one in the 800-meter run. On the men’s side, the Wildcats have earned nine All-American citations and two individual national titles.   

Men Tally Best Finish at NCAAs Since 1993
The Kansas State men’s track and field delegation at the 2006 NCAA Indoor Championships of Kyle Lancaster, Christian Smith and Scott Sellers did some heavy lifting. The trio tallied 17 points (10 from Smith and seven from Lancaster) to register an 11th place finish in the championship. This is the highest men’s finish since the 1993 season, when K-State finished eighth with 16 points.

Everybody’s All-American
Despite sending small groups of athletes to the national meet, K-State’s individuals have carved out success at the meet. The women’s team has had at least one All-American in 23 consecutive seasons, with the only occasions without an All-American coming in the inaugural meet in 1982. The K-State women have actually doubled the success at the indoor meet with two or more All-Americans at 12 consecutive championships. The women have earned 68 total All-American certificates, but are still looking for their first individual national champion.

The K-State men have tallied at least one All-American citation in six straight national championship appearances, including four consecutive years with two or more certificates. The Wildcat men have earned 85 indoor All-American citations and have won 11 individual national titles, including Christian Smith’s crown in the mile during the 2006 edition of the meet.

Her Name is Bonds, Morgan Bonds
Junior Morgan Bonds continued to perform well in the 2007 season winning her second career Big 12 title in the 600-yard run last weekend. The Hutchinson, Kan., product crossed the line in 1:20.05, setting the school record for the fastest oversized track mark. Bonds has won every race, eight(600-yards, 800-meters and 1,000) that she has competed in this season.

Bonds clocked an 800-meter victory in her first appearance in Ames this season during the ISU Classic in a time of 2:06.20. The time is the second-fastest oversized track 800-meter time in school history. She has won all four 800 races she has run this season.

Bonds made her first appearance in an 800-meter race this season a memorable one crossing the tape in a time of 2:07.87 to win the event in the championship heat of the Arkansas Invitational, Jan. 12. With the clocking, Bonds tallied her first career NCAA provisional mark in the event and the second-fastest time in school history. Her time trails only Lysaira Roman-Del Valle’s 2:05.52 during the 2005 NCAA Indoor Championships. Both of these times were notched on the Randal Tyson Track in Fayetteville.

Groves in the Groove
Sophomore Loren Groves became the third female in school history to win a Big 12 weight throw title with a winning toss of 67-10.75. Groves has now surpassed 60 feet in 12 of 13 career weight throw competitions.    Groves improved her career-best and Big 12 lead in the women’s weight throw to 68-03.75 with her win during the KSU Open on Feb. 15. The effort set a new meet record and ranks second in K-State history behind Renetta Seiler’s toss of 69-02.50 during the 1998 NCAA Championships. Groves improved on her NCAA Indoor Championship provisional status with the distance.

Groves registered a second-place distance of 67-11.50 during the ISU Classic in her first visit to Ames this season. The effort was her previous career-high and trailed only NCAA leader and world record holder Brittany Riley of Southern Illinois.  

Groves opened the season with three straight wins in the event, capturing the Dan DeHart Invitational with a toss of 67-04.00. This effort set a new Albuquerque Covention Center record and was the third time this season she had thrown beyond the NCAA provisional mark of 62-04.00. The Scott City, Mo., native won her second weight throw title of the season with a toss of 67-10.25 during the KSU Invitational.

Groves Named Big 12 AOW
Sophomore Loren Groves earned the first Big 12 indoor athlete of the week honor for K-State this season with her winning effort during the KSU Open on Feb. 15 in the women’s weight throw.

Groves earned her first career athlete of the week citation and became the first female to earn the award since Breanna Eveland on Jan. 17, 2006.

Stellar Sellers Sets School Record
Sophomore Scott Sellers placed himself atop the K-State record books in the high jump during the ISU Classic on Feb. 10 with a winning effort of 7-05.75. The Katy, Texas, native also set a new Lied Recreation Center record with the mark and was six feet better than the runner-up in the event. He also improved his NCAA automatic qualifying status and his standing amongst the national leaders.

Two weeks ago at the Dan DeHart Invitational in Albuquerque, N.M., Sellers won with a height of 7-05.25. That clearance tied him with Kyle Lancaster and Percell Gaskins for the top indoor effort by a Wildcat. The mark also set a new Albuquerque Convention Center record and improved upon his NCAA automatic qualifying status.

To open the 2007 season, Seller quickly eliminated any doubt that a return trip to the NCAA Indoor Championships was in jeopardy, with an automatic qualifying height of 7-04.25 during the KSU All-Comers meet on Dec. 9. The effort tied his previous career-best from the 2006 Big 12 Indoor Championships.

Sellers earned All-American honors in his first NCAA Indoor Championships, finishing ninth in the high jump with a clearance of 7-02.50. The Katy, Texas native was the first male freshman to earn All-American honors in the Rovelto era and the first since Kenny Harrison in 1985.

Wagner Wows’em
Senior Kaylene Wagner recorded a new personal career-best with a clearance of 6-01.25 during the KSU Open on Feb. 15. This is the fourth-highest effort in school history and the fourth time this year she has surpassed six feet.

Wagner started her K-State career with five wins in her first seven high jump competitions after an entire season on the sidelines as a transfer. She is believed to be the first female in school history to win five consecutive high jump titles in a single season. The product of Goleta, Calif., and a transfer from Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo, won her fifth title with a height of 6-00.75 at the Dan DeHart Invitational. The clearance was the fifth-highest in school history, tying with Morgan High’s effort from the 2004 KSU-KU-MU Triangular. Wagner is also the first K-State female to surpass six feet in the event since High.

Wagner opned the 2007 season with an NCAA automatic qualifying height of 6-00.50 during the KSU All-Comers on Dec. 9 and equaled the effort during the Conference Challenge on Jan. 20.

Wagner also added wins at the KSU Invitational (5-10.75) and at the Arkansas Invitational (5-11.25).

Just What the Schlachter Ordered
Junior Marianne Schlachter boosted her career-best in the women’s triple jump to 43-03.00 with her third-place finish at the Big 12 Indoor Championships. The performance is the third-longest triple jump in school history, trailing Chaytan Hill (44-09.50) and Vannita Kinard (44-03.25).

Schlachter garnered a second-place distance with her previous personal-best of 43-00.50 in the triple jump at the Dan DeHart Invitational.  Schlachter’s previous career-best came earlier this season at the Arkansas Invitational with a jump of 41-10.00. 

Schlachter has also registered a career-high this season in the pentathlon with 3,603 points during the Sevigne Husker Invitational for a seventh-place finish. The point total ranks 10th in school history and was just 97 points from an NCAA provisional qualifying mark. Her previous career-best was 3,482 points during the season-opening Carol Robinson Winter Pentathlon.

17 and Counting for Heller
Junior Laci Heller won her 17th career weight throw crown with a toss of 63-10.25 during the ISU Last Chance Qualifier. She has a personal season-best of 65-00.50, which entered the weekend ranked 20th in the nation. The Meriden, Kan., native has surpassed the NCAA Indoor provisional mark in 22 of her 26 career meets. Heller has surpassed 60 feet in every competition during her career.

Heller finished third in the weight throw at the 2007 Big 12 Championships. It was the third top-three finish for Heller, as she finished second in 2005 and captured the title in 2006.