Wildcats Head to Prestigious Drake Relays

Sara Stoakes

April 27, 2011

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MANHATTAN, Kan. – The Kansas State Wildcats will again compete in one of the longest running track and field meets in the nation this weekend. After running in the 84th Kansas Relays last week, the Wildcats are set for the 102nd Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa. K-State will send a strong group of distance runners to the meet along with some solid field event competitors.

Fans will have the opportunity to see the Wildcats compete in a number of different relay events that are not seen at most meets. The women will field a 4x800 relay team with their sites set on a school record. Both the men and women will be running in the distance medley relay and sprint medley relay.

In addition to the exciting relay action, the Wildcats will have some of its top distance runners on the track for the 800 meters, 1,500 meters and 10,000 meters. Erik Kynard hopes to jump high in his first competition in two weeks as he will take on a large field in the high jump. K-State’s top female jumpers will also be in action as Nina Kokot will be in the long jump and TiAra Walpool will triple jump. Also, looking to defend his title in the javelin from last year at the Drake Relays will be Tomas Kirielius.

Fans wanting to see the action from Drake Stadium can purchase tickets at godrakebulldogs.com with a variety of options available. Live results will also be provided by deltatiming.com as well.

A small group of Wildcats will be heading north to Lincoln to compete in the Nebraska Open on Sunday. K-State will have athletes in a number of throwing and jumping events to go with a group of sprinters in action as well. Some of K-State’s combined events athletes will compete in multiple events in preparation for Big 12 Championships in two weeks. Live results from the Husker Open will be available at huskers.com.

Wildcats Wow Crowd at Kansas Relays
A number of Wildcats impressed at the 84th Kansas Relays at Memorial Stadium, but none more than Ryann Krais and Ali Pistora as the two combined for three of K-State’s five wins at the meet.

Krais pulled the double-dip winning the 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles in commanding fashion. Krais pulled away from the field over the final two hurdles in the 100 to claim the victory with the time of 13.63 seconds. She then went on to dominate the 400 hurdles as well. After winning her preliminary heat by nearly four seconds, Krais went on to win the final by more than two seconds clocking in with a new school record of 57.04 seconds. She also ranks eighth in the NCAA this season.

Pistora battled with KU’s Heather Bergmann in the javelin as the two separated themselves from the rest of the competition early. Bergmann posted a throw bigger than Pistora’s personal record on her third throw of the competition only to see Pistora surpass immediately after. Pistora then went on to post an even bigger mark on her fourth attempt to win the event with her toss of 170-11. The mark ranks second in school history and was tops in the Big 12 this season at the time. Pistora now stands sixth in the NCAA in the javelin.

The Wildcats also tallied a win in the men’s 4x100 relay. The tandem of Mantas Silkauskas, Jeffrey Julmis, Jason Coniglio and Martynas Jurgilas ran an impressive time of 40.55 in the preliminaries and followed it with 40.60 in the final to get the win. Also getting a win for K-State was distance runner Mitch Loring. He claimed the men’s 1,500 meters clocking in at 3:57.61 for a new personal best.

K-State Women Crack Top 25 in Outdoor
K-State’s women made a big push this week in the USTFCCCA Rankings cracking the Top 25 for the first time this season. The Wildcats jumped eight spots for their biggest move of the season to come in at No. 25 this week. The women made the jump with strong performances from Ali Pistora and Ryann Krais at the Kansas Relays this weekend.

Pistora set a new PR in the javelin with her toss of 170-11 to rank sixth in the nation. The mark was tops in the Big 12 this season briefly as Oklahoma’s Brittany Borman inched by on Saturday at another meet. Krais dominated the field in the women’s 400 meter hurdles clocking in at a new school record 57.04 seconds. Krais’ time stands eighth in the NCAA to move her up the standings in that event. She also holds the No. 2 score this season in the heptathlon after finishing second at the Texas Relays and is ranked No. 4 overall taking high scores from last season into account for other athletes.

Martina Tresch stands 10th in the women’s steeplechase, and Nina Kokot also is ranked 15th in the long jump. TiAra Walpool moves to 21st in the triple jump. Boglarka Bozzay and Sara Stoakes complete the list of Wildcat women ranked in their events as both are receiving points for the ranking formula in the 800 meters.

The Kansas State men dropped farther from the Top 25 this week after falling to No. 26 a week ago. This week the men come in at No. 35. The Wildcats have a total of nine events scored in the rankings formula. The rankings place student-athletes according to their best marks from last season and the early portion of this season awarding points for those performances to come up with the rankings formula.

High jumper Erik Kynard is tied for No. 1 in his event with his jump of 7-05.75, and Mantas Silkauskas joins him in the Top 10 in his respective event currently ranked seventh in the decathlon. is ranked sixth in the decathlon, and hurdler Jeffrey Julmis is eighth in the 110 meter hurdles.

Moritz Cleve is now 22nd in the decathlon based on last year’s top performance. Jeffrey Julmis stands 23rd in the 110 meter hurdles along with Silkauskas at 29th. Martynas Jurgilas is ranked in both the 100 and 200 meters, and K-State’s tandem of Silkauskas, Julmis, Jason Coniglio and Jurgilas is ranked in the 4x100. Tomaz Bogovic (hammer throw) and Cory Boulanger (javelin) give K-State a pair of throwers in the rankings.
The Big 12 is again one of the top conferences with seven teams ranked in the Top 25 on the men’s side and eight on the women’s. Texas A&M (1), Texas Tech (5), Texas (6) and Baylor (10) give the men four teams in the Top 10. Nebraska (12), Kansas (16) and Oklahoma (21) round out the men for the Big 12 in the Top 25.

Texas A&M was the preseason favorite on the women’s side and was taken over this week by LSU at No. 1 falling one spot. Oklahoma (6), Texas (8) and  Texas Tech (9) also are in the Top 10. Baylor (12), Nebraska (18), Colorado (23) and K-State (25) complete the Big 12 schools on the list.

Wildcats Cut Competition at Woodman Classic
The K-State track and field team dominated the K.T. Woodman Classic hosted by Wichita State this season with 11 wins and 18 new personal records. The women’s squad swept the relay events winning both the 4x100 and 4x400. They also won both the 100 meter hurdles and 400 hurdles. Denise Baker won the 100 hurdles with Ryann Krais finishing close behind in second. Krais went on to dominate the 400 hurdles. The pair would team up with Cenarda Jackson and Erica Twiss to win the shuttle hurdles by nearly five seconds in the exciting and rarely seen event.

The men also were tops in the hurdles with Jeffrey Julmis and Mantas Silkauskas finishing 1-2. Franciso Colomar and Luke Hibbeler would keep the trend going finishing first and second in the 400 hurdles.

K-State’s success went far beyond the hurdles and relays. Martynas Jurgilas won both the men’s 100 and 200 meters. His time in the 200 meters placed him second in school history as well. Boglarka Bozzay won the women’s 800 meters with an impressive time of 2:07.35 for a new personal best and to rank seventh in school history. Sara Stoakes was right behind her in second. In sticking with the many successes of K-State’s mid-distance runners this season, Meghan Heuer won the women’s 1,500 meters with a new PR, too.