Geubelle, Bartnovskaya surpass facility marks as Kansas rolls at home challenge
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Featuring strong performances from Andrea Geubelle and Natalia Bartnovskaya, Kansas had an impressive showing on Friday at the Jayhawk Challenge inside the Anschutz Pavilion. Kansas saw three facility records fall as well several of its athletes move up the national ranks.
Junior Bartnovskaya won her second pole vault title in as many weeks. She topped her nation-best performance in just her third competition at Kansas.
Bartnovskaya fouled only once while she easily cleared the first four heights of the day and took down the facility record of 4.13 meters (13-5.50 ft.) held by Kate Sultanova. She then flew over the next bar of 4.29 meters (14-0.75 ft.) to sew up the victory against teammate Demi Payne and extended her NCAA-leading mark. Her clearance is just an inch off from tying the school record and moved her to No. 2 on the all-time school performance lists.
Geubelle soared to a mark of 6.25 meters (20-6.25 ft.) on her second long jump attempt of the day to break the Anschutz facility record by more than four inches and give her the NCAA-leading mark in the event.
Geubelle came close to topping the mark during her next four jumps, but fouled on two and was unable to improve on her second-round leap. She earned her first long jump title in Lawrence since 2010, beating the field by just under two feet.
On the men's side, Kyle Clemons notched an impressive performance in the 600 yards as he blazed around the track in a personal-best 1:09.77 to break Texas Longhorn John Patterson's 17-year-old facility record of 1:09.91. Clemons raced to first by more than four seconds and collected his fourth collegiate victory in the event with his time that still remains as the best in the nation.
Seeing her first competitive action since helping the U.S. Olympic 4x400 meter relay team win gold at the London Olympics in August, Diamond Dixon returned to the track to kick off her 2013 season. Running in the 600 yards, she came from behind in the final 50 meters to take the event title against Kansas State's Sonia Gaskin. Dixon posted a time of 1:22.69 to vault herself to the top of the national performance list in the event.
Later in the night Dixon played anchor on the women's 4x400 meter relay team. The quartet of Denesha Morris, Alisha Keys, Paris Daniels and Dixon had to come from behind to beat out Kansas State's speedy freshman squad. They finished with a time of 3:44.93 to win the event and earn KU's fastest relay time of the season.
In field action, Jessica Maroszek notched the first shot put win of her young season. She started her day strong with a toss of 15.04 meters (49-4.25 ft.). The mark was an indoor personal best and propelled her on to the finals. Maroszek came close to topping the mark with her sixth-throw heave of 14.94 meters (49-0 ft.) but had already guaranteed the win, topping the runner-up finisher by more than two feet.
Senior Francine Simpson impressed in the first triple jump competition of her career. An All-American in the long jump, Simpson started the day with a mark of 12.41 meters (40-8.57 ft.). The jump is the fifth-farthest in the NCAA this season and handed Simpson the victory as no competitor came within three feet of her first attempt mark.
In high jump, Colleen O'Brien continued her dominance, soaring to her seventh collegiate victory and extended her unbeaten streak inside Anschutz Pavilion. After moving through the early heights with ease, she snuck over the 1.75 meter (5-8.75 ft.) bar on her third try to tie a personal best and clinch the victory. The career-tying clearance places O'Brien at No. 11 on this season's national performance list.
Daniels entered the day boasting the top times in the NCAA in two events, the 60 meters and the 200 meters. Daniels clocked in with a time of 7.46, .14 seconds slower than her season-best, but good enough to win the event. She outpaced freshmen teammates Tianna Valentine, who finished third in 7.55, and Sydney Conley, who took fourth in 7.64.