There’s a saying in track and field — all sports, really — that you can’t win a team title on the first day of the NCAA championships.
By RUSTIN DODD
The Kansas City Star
But on Wednesday in Eugene, Ore., the No. 1-ranked Kansas women were in position to set the tone for a historic week. And after nearly six hours of events — including a handful of finals — the title picture was still … plenty cloudy.
KU senior Alena Krechyk began the day by taking third place in the women’s hammer throw with a throw of 68.22 meters (223 feet, 10 inches), and senior Andrea Geubelle finished second in the long jump.
But in a shocker, junior Diamond Dixon failed to qualify for the women’s 400 meter final after finishing third in her heat. Dixon, who finished in 52.38 seconds, finished had placed third at the NCAA championships last year before winning a relay gold medal at the Olympics in London.
Still, KU stayed in contention with a couple of top-three finishes.
Krechyk, a native of Grodno, Belarus, improved on her sixth place finish at last year’s NCAA outdoor meet, giving the Jayhawks six points. And Geubelle scored eight points while holding onto second with a jump of 21 feet, 2 inches. (Geubelle will also be the favorite to win the triple jump on Friday.)
Senior Heather Bergmann added a sixth-place finish in the javelin, claiming three points with a personal-best throw. The Jayhawks finished the day in first place in the team competition with 17 points.
Wait finishes seventh
Kansas State junior Kyle Wait finished in a four-way tie for seventh in the men’s pole vault after clearing 17 feet, 8.5 inches. Wait, a graduate of Gardner Edgerton, entered the meet as the two-time defending Big 12 champion.