Cats Trek to Tucson for Jim Click

This Week For Kansas State
Jim Click Shootout
Thursday-Saturday, March 22-24, 2007
Roy P. Drachman Stadium Tucson, Ariz.

MANHATTAN, Kan. - K-State track and field will make a spring break trip to the Jim Click Shootout in Tucson, Ariz., this weekend. The Wildcats will take a full compliment of athletes to the meet at Roy P. Drachman Stadium, which begins with the Jim Click Combined Events on Thursday morning. 

Last Time Out
Kansas State opened the 2007 outdoor season last Thursday at the Mike’s Sporting Goods Spring Twilight on the Emporia State campus in Emporia, Kan. The Wildcats garnered three NCAA Midwest Regional marks and six event titles.

Two athletes registered a regional mark and an event title during the meet: sophomore Ashley Reider in the women’s javelin and senior TJ Staab in the men’s shot put. Reider recorded a mark of 145-09 in her season debut. Staab carded a winning effort of 55-08.50 in his first performance for the Wildcats since the ISU Last Chance Qualifier on March 4, 2006.

Junior Laci Heller also registered a regional effort in the women’s hammer with a second-place throw of 190-11.

Other event winners were: junior Kyle Seiler (men’s javelin), sophomore Adam Fretwell (men’s 110-meter hurdles), junior Liz Rea (women’s 1500-meter run), and the women’s 4x100-meter relay.

Last Time Outdoors in 2006
A season ago, Kansas State earned three All-America citations of its 11 representatives at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. The three athletes earning the honor were Candice Mills (women’s long jump), Scott Sellers (men’s high jump) and Christian Smith (men’s mile).

The women notched a fourth-place finish during the Big 12 Outdoor Championships in Waco, Texas, while the men placed 10th. The women earned their first individual outdoor Big 12 titles since the 2003 season as Laci Heller (hammer throw), Breanna Eveland (pole vault) and Marianne Schlachter (triple jump) secured their first outdoor Big 12 crowns. 

During the Midwest Regional two weeks later in Austin, Texas, the teams each finished seventh on the strength of event titles from Eveland (women’s pole vault) and Josh Scheer (men’s javelin).  

Sellers Ranked Among IAAF Elite
Sophomore Scott Sellers is ranked 42nd in the high jump according to the March 12 International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) world rankings. Sellers will likely climb in the next set of rankings on March 19 because of his third-place finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships.

K-State Welcomes Back Three for Outdoor Campaign
After a full season on the sidelines due to a redshirt year and/or exhausted indoor eligibility, seniors Kyle Lancaster, TJ Staab and Shunte Thomas are set to put a wrap on their K-State careers during the 2007 outdoor season.

Lancaster, a native of Fort Scott, Kan., is a three-time outdoor All-American and owns the outdoor school record in the high jump at 7-07.00.

During the 2004 NCAA Outdoor Championships, Lancaster registered a second-place finish with a clearance of 7-06.00.

Staab reached the 2005 NCAA Outdoor Championships in the shot put and has a personal outdoor best of 59-06.25, which ranks sixth in school history. Staab will make a bid to become the first thrower for the Wildcats to surpass 60 feet since 1985 when Andrew Gillam set the school record at 64-07.50. 

Thomas regionally qualified in four events last season (200, 400, 4x100 and 4x400) and finished fourth at the 2006 Big 12 Championships with a time of 52.83. The product of Coral Springs, Fla. is a 2005 outdoor All-American in the 400 and has the fourth-fastest time in school history at 52.55.

Heller Wins First Hammer Title, Second Big 12 Title
Junior Laci Heller won the first Big 12 individual title for the Wildcats in just over two years, winning the hammer throw with a toss of 193-07. The native of Meriden, Kan., entered the finals with a leading toss of 191-07, but was surpassed by Slata Tarasova of Kansas. Heller needed her final throw of the afternoon to win the event.

Heller becomes the first Wildcat to win the hammer and weight throw titles in the same calendar year since Renetta Seiler accomplished the feat in 1999. Heller entered this weekend ranked number one in the Midwest Regional with a personal-best of 202-01.

Schlachter Wins First Big 12 Outdoor Title
Junior Marianne Schlachter won the first triple jump Big 12 title for the Wildcats since Vannita Kinard won the first in 1997. Schlachter skipped to a winning distance of 42-00.00 during the 2006 Big 12 Championships in Waco, Texas, to earn the title on her fifth jump of the competition.

Schlachter has a personal outdoor best of 43-05.00 during the UTEP Springtime Invitational on April 1.

Indoor Season Summary
K-State had three athletes earn All-America accolades during the 2007 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. Athletes earning honors were Scott Sellers (men’s high jump), Loren Groves (women’s weight throw) and Kaylene Wagner (women’s high jump). The trio also earned All-America honors from the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday.

Sellers finished third with a clearance of 7-03.25 to for his second career indoor citation and an improvement over his ninth-place finish during his freshman campaign. This was the 10th All-American honor in the high jump by a K-State athlete. Sellers six points gave the Kansas State men’s team a 32nd-place finish.

Groves registered a sixth-place finish in the weight throw with a toss of 67-06.75 for her first national honor. This was the sixth All-American distinction in the weight throw for a female Wildcat.

Wagner finished eighth in the high jump with a clearance of 6-00.00. This was the first All-American honor for a female K-State high jumper since Morgan High’s sixth-place effort in 2003. The combined effort of Groves and Wagner registered four points for the women’s 50th place finish. 

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.