Silkauskas Second After Day One

COLUMBIA, Mo. - After the first day of action at the Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Championships, the Kansas State Wildcats stand poised to lead the way in the decathlon for a second straight year. The pair of Mantas Silkauskas and Tomas Kirielius is in position to score points for the Wildcats a year after they had three stand on the podium following the decathlon.

Silkauskas is in second place with 4,011 points in the decathlon through five events and trails Missouri's Nick Adcock by just seven in a tight race. Silkauskas finished second last year at the Big 12 meet with Moritz Cleve winning for K-State. Cleve is not competing at this year's meet, but Silkauskas is helping the Wildcats maintain their reputation as one of the best combined events programs.

Silkauskas jumped to the early lead with the 100 meters crossing the line in 10.62 seconds. He continued to lead after the long jump as one of only two competitors to jump farther than 23-05.00 with his leap of 23-07.25. He fell back following the shot put but climbed back into the lead with a personal best in the high jump clearing 6-06.00. He ran the 400M in 49.63 seconds to take second place overall into Saturday's final five events.

Kirielius posted personal records in all five events in Day One of the decathlon to position himself in sixth place with 3,645 points. He opened the competition with a time of 11.50 in the 100 meters and climbed up the list with the third-best shot put in the field at 43-00.50. He soared higher than all competitors in the high jump to again score big points toward his total clearing 6-08.25 for a personal best. His mark in the high jump also ranks fifth in school history for a decathlon. Immediately following the 400M, Kirielius had to head to the runway for the open javelin competition where he finished 13th.

Also competing in the javelin for K-State were Cory Boulanger and Cole Zenisek. Boulanger finished seventh with his throw of 204-03 to score two points for the Wildcats. Zenisek finished 11th with his throw of 198-00.

K-State saw a big improvement from Eric Thomas in the hammer throw as he placed sixth to earn the men's team its first three points of the championship. Thomas posted a new personal best throw of 188-10 (57.55m) to surpass his previous best by more than 10 feet. The throw also moves him into sixth in school history for the hammer throw. He will also throw the discus on Sunday.

For the women in the heptathlon, Stephanie Hejde finds herself in 11th place after the first four events with 2,744 points. The highlight of her day came in the shot put where she put out the third-best throw of the competition to move up in the overall standings before the 200 meters for the last event of the day.

In the first event of the day, junior Sydney Messick ran to a seventh-place finish in the women's 10,000 meters to score two points for the Wildcats. Her time of 35:34.39 improved her personal best by nearly 12 seconds and holds her spot at No. 10 all-time in K-State history. Alyssa Bellinder in her final meet as a Wildcat shattered her personal record by 28 seconds to finish 12th at 36:06.74.

Upon completion of the first day Iowa State's women were leading the scoring with 32 points thanks to a strong performance by a crew of Cyclones in the 10,000M. Nebraska leads the men's competition through three events on the arms of its throwers with 25 points. Day Two of action starts at 10 a.m. with the second portion of the decathlon. Silkauskas and Kirielius will begin their day with the 110 meter hurdles while Hejde completes the heptathlon beginning at 11 a.m. Preliminaries for running events begin at 1 p.m. along with the day's first field events. Live streaming will be available at www.big12sports.com on Saturday and Sunday.

Friday Results
Decathlon - Day One
2: Mantas Silkauskas 4,011 points
            100M: 10.62, LJ: 23-07.25, SP: 38-04.75, HJ: 6-06.00 PR, 400M 49.63
6: Tomas Kirielius, 3,645
            100M: 11.50 PR, LJ: 20-11.75 PR, SP: 43-00.50 PR, HJ:6-08.25 PR, 400M 52.48 PR

Heptathlon - Day One
11: Stephanie Hejde 2,744 points
            100H: 15.72, HJ: 4-11.50, SP: 37-03.00, 200M: 26.61

10,000M
7: Sydney Messick, 35:34.39 PR
12: Alyssa Bellinder, 36:06.74 PR

Hammer Throw
Men
6: Eric Thomas, 188-10 PR, 6th in school history

Women
11: Chelsie Bonds, 169-08

Javelin
7: Cory Boulanger, 204-03
11: Cole Zenisek, 198-00
13: Tomas Kirielius, 195-10

- k-statesports.com -