Grant Sixth in Triple Jump at Drake Relays as Bears Complete Split-Squad Weekend
DES MOINES, Iowa - Competing at the 102nd running of the prestigious Drake Relays, Kimsue Grant finished sixth in the triple jump and the 4x100-meter relay team made its second straight finals appearance as the Bears concluded a busy weekend that also saw MSU athletes succeed at the Kip Janvrin Open at Simpson College (Indianola, Iowa).
DRAKE RELAYS, APRIL 28-30
Grant (So., Arlington, Va.) solidified her position as the top triple jumper in the Missouri Valley Conference, and one of the best in the Midwest, with a sixth-place event finish and a 40-11.50-foot mark in the Drake Relays final event. Jumping on Saturday, which drew a crowd of 14,504 to Drake Stadium, Grant was shy of her personal best of 41-06.00, the best jump of any MVC competitor this season. Her closest competition is teammate Ahshane Johnson (Fr., Moberly, Mo.), who holds a length of 38-11.75 feet.
Running in front of 11,131 fans at Friday's session, the 4x100-meter relay team of Sydney Peavy, Kimsue Grant, Pernell Joseph and Shantel Llewellyn earned a place in Saturday's final by finishing the preliminary round in 46.27 seconds, the fastest time of any MSU group since the 2007 MVC Outdoor Championships. That 2007 group of Kim Carter, Genna Williams, Alexandria Oembler and Leander Ernest ran an NCAA Regional Qualifying mark of 45.58 seconds.
This year's version, which now has the second-fastest time this season of any Valley squad, then bettered themselves Saturday with a 46.07-second time in a finals field of teams from Illinois, Oklahoma, Baylor, Ohio State, Louisiana Tech, Ole Miss and Cincinnati. The Bears placed seventh.
Thursday night under the lights, Theresa Brokaw (Stronghurst, Ill.) became MSU's fifth-best all-time outdoor performer in the 5,000-meter run when she ran a personal best of 17:04.18 minutes. The performance came on the heels of her outdoor record-setting 3,000-meter run at the Kansas Relays last weekend, where she finished in 9:47.34 minutes
Ariel Butzine (So., Lake Villa, Ill.) ran a season-best, and near personal-best, 2:12.77 minutes in Thursday's 800-meter run.
KIP JANVRIN OPEN, APRIL 28-29
For the second straight week, junior Jeláni Kelly set a personal best while earning a top-five finish. At the Kip Janvrin Open, Thursday in Indianola, Iowa, the St. Louis, Mo., native threw 159-04.00 feet in the discus throw to place third. Her new high mark is the seventh-best throw in MSU history.
At last week's Kansas Relays, Kelly was fifth in the shot put with a personal best 47-06.25-foot throw.
Ahshane Johnson (Fr., Moberly, Mo.) improved her long jump personal best by nearly a foot on her way to a third-place finish. Johnson jumped 18-07.25 feet on Friday, and is now sixth in the MVC in the event.
Also in the field events, Jordan Bond (So., Normal, Ill.) cleared 5-04.25 feet in the high jump to place second.
The 800-meter run produced two top-five finishes Friday, as Maggie Sutor (Fr., Mokena, Ill.) and Nicole Thate (So., Darien, Ill.) placed second and fourth, respectively. Sutor ran a personal best time of 2:16.30 minutes, while Thate crossed the line in 2:17.05 minutes.
Next weekend, the Bears will compete in the Arkansas Twilight in Fayetteville, Ark., Friday, May 6. It will be their final tune up before the Missouri Valley Conference Outdoor Championships (May 13-15).