Courtesy: UMKC Athletics/MSH Photography
‘Roos Gear Up for Notre Dame’s Alex Wilson Invitational Over the Weekend
Courtesy:UMKC Athletics
Release:03/01/2013
(Kansas City, Mo.) - After a successful outing in The Summit League Championships earlier in the week, the Kansas City track and field program will send a handful of members to South Bend, Ind. for Notre Dame's Alex Wilson Invitational over the weekend.

The festivities will begin today at 5 p.m. with the women's weight throw, while Saturday's events will kick-off at 10 a.m. with both the men's and women's triple jump.

Last Time Out...

The men took third with 118 points, while the women took fourth with 86 points.  With this outing, the men finished with their highest point total since 2001, whereas this was the women's highest point total since 2001 as well.

Leading the way for the women, sophomore Courtney Frerichs took home the gold in both the 3,000 meters (9:46.24) and 5,000 meters (16:54.54).  Not only did Frerichs' performance in the 5,000 meters set a school record, but also a Dakota Dome record, too. 

Meanwhile, after not only setting a team record (7.56) in the 60-meter dash, but a Dakota Dome record as well in the 60-meter dash preliminaries, junior Michelle Momo placed second (7.60) in the finals. The Fort Worth, Texas native also won the silver medal in the long jump with a mark of 18-07.75 (5.68m).

Also, bringing home a medal for Kansas City was freshman Dahlia Dyson in the weight throw as she placed third with the second best performance (59-01.25 - 18.01m) in team history, while senior Stephany Johnson medaled in the triple jump for the second straight season by winning the bronze (38-04.75 - 11.70m).

On the men's side, senior Josh Butler shined throughout the league championships by taking home the gold medal (22.06) in the 200 meters and silver medal (49.06) in the 400 meters, while  also being a part of the 4x400-meter relay squad (Terrone Garner, Johnathon Barnett, Xavier Kenney) that crossed the finish line at 3:22.50 to place third.

Leading the way for the men, senior D.C. Okonta won the triple jump (48-01.25 - 14.66m), while junior Joshua Harden placed third with a personal best mark of 46-09.50 (14.26m) in the event.

Meanwhile, Group A (Daniel Mann, Johnathon Barnett, Kolton Sheldon, Taylor Wardall) ousted the competition by winning the distance medley event with a school and Dakota Dome record time of 9:59.11.  Also, medaling in a distance event was sophomore Taylor Wardall finished in a tie for second in the mile with a time of 4:11.60.

Rounding out the men's top performances was senior Richard McCoy medaled in the long jump by winning the bronze with a mark of 23-02.75 (7.08m), whereas freshman Blake Hocking won the bronze as well in the shot put with a personal best mark of 53-01.75 (16.20m).  This performance by Hocking was the second best in team history.

A Look Back

Last season in the Alex Wilson Invitational, Aubrey Frederking led the way for Kansas City by setting a school record (4:59.44) in the mile event to finish 25th.  With this performance, Frederking became the first female Kangaroo to finish the mile in less than five minutes.

In addition, sophomore Siara Stahl finished 28th in the mile with a personal best time of 5:06.61, while Courtney Frerichs took seventh (10:03.74) and senior Jylian Jaloma placed eighth (10:05.29) in the 3,000 meters.  

On the men's side, senior Daniel Mann took 34th (4:15.68) in the mile, whereas D.C. Okonta (triple jump) and Zach Mathias (3,000 meters) did not place in their events, respectively.

Okonta Continuing to Shine

By winning the gold medal in the triple jump at The Summit League Championships, D.C. Okonta's successful season continued as this performance marked the fifth time he's won this event.

Okonta's first crown came at the Bob Timmons Challenge (48-11.00 - 14.91m) on Dec. 6, followed by his performance (48-07.25 - 14.81m) at the Wildcat Invitational on Jan. 19. Later in the season, Okonta won the Jayhawk Classic (50-00.50 - 15.25m) on Jan. 25 and the Mule Relays (48-08.25 - 14.84m). To add to his list of accolades this season in the triple jump, the Liberty, Mo. native, placed second (49-02.50 - 15.00m) at the Bill Easton Classic on Jan. 5.

Heading into the final meet before the NCAA Indoor Championships, the Liberty, Mo. native currently ranks 53rd in the nation in the triple jump.

Frerichs Picking Up Where She Left Off 

After a prolific freshman season, which included competing for Team USA at the IAAF World Junior Championships, Courtney Frerichs wasted no time in her first competition in 2012-13 by winning (5:11.95) the mile event at the Jayhawk Classic (Jan. 25).

In the Iowa State Classic, she continued her success by shattering Jylian Jaloma's school record (10:01.81) in 3,000 meters with a time of 9:47.63 to finish second.

Last week, the Nixa, Mo. native added to her successful sophomore season by setting school records in the 3,000 meters and 5,000 meters to win each at the league championships.  

Wardall Not Wasting Any Time

Since announcing the addition of sophomore Taylor Wardall to the Kansas City track and field team on Jan. 8, Wardall has wasted no time in making a name for himself since coming over from the Oklahoma Sooners.  

At the Iowa State Classic, Wardall ran a 4:08.05 to set a new team record to win the mile event, followed by a second place finish (1:56.32) in the 800 meters.    

Last week at the league championships, the Appleton, Wis. native medaled twice with his performance in the mile and the distance medley events.

Coaching Staff

Shameika McField was named the head coach for the UMKC track and field/cross country programs on March 4, 2008. Before her appointment, McField served as the interim head coach for the Kangaroos from January to March 2008. McField joined the athletics department in September 2007 as an academic advisor.

Associate head coach Benaud Shirley joined the UMKC track and field program as an assistant coach in April 2008. Shirley, who had served as a volunteer assistant coach at Kansas from 2003-08, works with the jumpers for the Kangaroos.

Assistant coach James Butler joined the UMKC staff in July of 2011, and coaches the distance/cross country runners. He came to Kansas City after three years at the University of New Mexico.

Finally, assistant coach Andy Nordland joined the UMKC track and field program in September 2009 as an assistant coach and is entering his fourth season as the throws coach for the 'Roos. Nordland joined the program after spending four years at William Jewell College.

Coming Up for the Kangaroos...

Will be the NCAA Indoor Championships next week (March 7 - 9) in Fayetteville, Ark., hosted by the Arkansas Razorbacks.

Back to Track and Field