K-State track and field to host Ward Haylett Invitational over weekend

Freshman pole vaulter Zack Supple propels himself up and over the bar at the DeLoss Dodds Invitational track and field meet Jan. 23, 2016, in Ahearn Fieldhouse. (File Photo by Parker Robb | Collegian Media Group)

The Kansas State track and field teams have had a historic season so far and will look to continue breaking records when they compete in the Ward Haylett Outdoor Invitational starting on Saturday.

From April 26-28, the K-State track and field teams sent athletes to both Des Moines, Iowa, and Lubbock, Texas. The 109th Drake Relays were held in Des Moines and the Texas Tech Corky Crofoot Shootout was hosted in Lubbock.

In Texas, Brett Neelly finished the shot put event with the third-best throw in K-State program history: 19.59 meters.

Janee’ Kassanavoid was able to claim the women’s hammer throw with a distance of 67.38 meters. Helene Ingvaldsen set a personal best by throwing for 64.42 meters. This distance improves the fourth-best throw for the event in K-State outdoor track and field history.

The women’s 4×400-meter relay team of Lauren Taubert, A’Keyla Mitchell, Nina Schultz and Ariel Okorie ran the race in a time of 3:38.50 to place first.

The No. 13 ranked women’s team finished with 119 points to finish behind Texas Tech and Nebraska. The men’s team finished fourth with 98 total points at the Drake Relays.

“We had a number of personal bests and some really solid performances,” Cliff Rovelto, director of track and field and cross country, said to K-State Sports.

The women’s relay team in the 4×1600 race won the event for the first time at the Drake Relays in the history of the program. The team made up of Emma Wren, Cara Melgares, Sydney Collins and Morgan Wedekind won the event in 19:22.42.

“That was one of the most impressive performances that I have seen in coaching,” assistant coach Ryun Godfrey said about the race to K-State Sports. “It was windy, but our girls were determined and fought really hard. Each of them ran very well, and they left it all on the track.”

Kayla Doll set a new personal best in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10.18.76. Doll placed third in the event. Her own record that she surpassed was set at the 2017 Big 12 Championship, where she ran a time of 10:21.53 to place fifth.

Colton Donahue finished fourth in the men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:15.60.

In the 4×800 meter relay, both the men and women’s team placed fifth, with times of 7:36.86 and 8:56.17, respectively.

The first event of the Ward Haylett Invitational will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday in Manhattan.

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