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Saturday, April 20, 1991

Bazoni clears 16-0, wins vault

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A 16-foot vault is rarely a keeper at the Kansas Relays.

"I'm surprised I won it. At the Relays, you expect it'll take 17- to 18-feet," said Kansas freshman John Bazzoni, who took the collegiate pole vault competition with a less-than-spectacular leap of 16-0 on Friday afternoon at cold, windy Memorial Stadium.

"The weather was not a factor. There was a tailwind behind me. I thought everybody should have jumped better," he said.

Bazzoni, who was KU's sole winner Friday, tied fellow Jayhawk freshman Jayson Lavender and four other vaulters at 16-0. Yet Bazzoni, a North Manchester, Ind., native, won on fewest misses.

"I wish I could have gone higher. It's disappointing after last weekend," said Bazzoni. He cleared a personal-best 17-1 at the Nebraska Invitational. "But I know I have more years here. We've got some good, young vaulters. I just hopes it stays in the family every year."

Today the final day of the 66th Relays the open vault competitors will try to clear 19-feet and beyond. Good weather would help.

"It was very cold today, very cold," said 800 winner Bobby Gaseitsiwe of Barton County Community College. A native of Botswana, Africa, Gaseitsiwe competed in the 1988 Olympics. "I was too tight today."

He crossed in 1:51.96, just ahead of Kentucky's Alan Thomas (1:52.07). "Competing in the Olympics is a great experience for an athlete," said Gaseitsiwe, who did not advance to the 800 finals, "but I like college meets, too. Next year, I'll be going to a four-year college, but it won't be in Kansas. It'll be somewhere warmer."

Barton County's women notched the day's only record-setting collegiate performance. The 880 relay team of Cheryann Phillips, Cynthia Tylor, Beverly McDonald and Juliet Campbell finished in 1:36.0, bettering the old record of 1:36.54.

"I think we could have run faster. I didn't do my best because my muscles were too cold," said Campbell, the anchor.

KU's four-mile relay team of Jason Teal, Donnie Anderson, Michael Cox and Sam Froese placed second. The Jayhawks finished in 16:53.60 to victorious Kansas State's 16:51.2.

"It's a rivalry. I hate to see them beat us," said KU anchor-man Froese, a senior.

A former Jayhawk Clint Johnson won the Bill Nieder shot put. Competing for the American Big Guys club, the 1985 KU graduate tossed 60-1 , compared to runnerup Kevin Coleman's 58-10 . Coleman competed unattached.

Matt Kiesow, competing for Augustana College, an NCAA Div. II school, improved on last year's third-place finish by winning the Wes Santee 1,500. He was timed in 3:51.81. Kentucky's George Yiannellis was second in 3:52.25.

"There was a lot of shoving early," said Kiesow. "It's nice to come to a big meet and win. I like the setting here."

Last year's women's Relays MVP, Angie Miller of Kansas State, won the women's shot in 49-2 . She won the tiebreaker over teammate Shanele Stires.

"I've always done well at this meet," said Miller. "I decided to get it in gear."

Kansas' Cathy Palacios placed third in the 800 in 2:13.09. Harun Hazim (23-6 ) notched sixth and Kim Huthoefer seventh (18-8 ) in the men's and women's long jumps.

The meet was to conclude today with the majority of finals set for 1 to about 5 p.m.

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