HOUSTON- The Wichita State Track & Field team begins its 2013 outdoor season with the Shirley Crowe Multi on the campus of Rice University, March 19-20.
After earning their highest ranking in school history, (19th) and posting their highest national finish ever (24th) during the indoor season, the Shocker women's team looks to achieve new heights during the outdoor campaign.
The Shockers have historically performed stronger during the outdoor campaign. They have won 10 Missouri Valley Conference Outdoor Team Championships during the Steve Rainbolt era, including consecutive MVC Women's Outdoor Championships in 2011 and 2012.
On the women's side, Tanya Friesen, the reigning MVC Outdoor Heptathlon Champion, will compete at the Shirley Crowe Multi. Friesen earned NCAA Second-Team All-American Honors for the first time in her career at the NCAA Indoor Championships just over a week ago.
Four other Shocker multis; Jaclyn Abrahamian, Sierra Hays, Nikki Larch-Miller, and Gavyn Yetter will join Friesen in Houston. WSU multis added 39 points to the Shockers team victory at the MVC Indoor Championships.
"The multi events are very important to both our men's and women's teams," Rainbolt said. "So we always take the decathlon and heptathlon athletes to a good spring break competition."
An NCAA Second-Team All-American during the indoor season, Austin Bahner, will begin his outdoor season with a decathlon in Houston. After battling through a hamstring injury at the NCAA Indoor Championships, Bahner hopes to qualify for nationals again during the outdoor season.
"I'm a lot better outdoors," Bahner said. " So hopefully I can make it back and place at Outdoor Nationals."
Bahner, the MVC Indoor Heptathlon Champion will compete at Rice with fellow All-MVC multis, Tobias Boese, Mac Griffith, and Justin Hickey. Newcomer, Taylor Cross will also travel to Houston to participate in his first decathlon in a Shocker uniform.
"This meet will be a great way to open up the outdoor season for our multi event athletes," Rainbolt said.
While the multis battle in the first outdoor meet of the season, the rest of the Shocker Track & Field Team will prepare for their 2013 outdoor debut. Many of these athletes will compete next week as the Shockers travel to meets at Stanford and Arkansas.
The Shockers will host their annual K.T. Woodman Classic Apr. 10-13, with the college meet beginning on Friday, Apr. 12 at Cessna Stadium.
Get tickets for the K.T. Woodman Classic by calling 316-978-FANS (3267), visiting the Shocker Ticket Office in the southwest corner of Charles Koch Arena, or buy them online here.