Karys became the first Drake men's athlete since Matt Sanderson in 2006 to win the long jump at the outdoor conference meet.
"Karys went into the event wanting to do well," commented head coach Natasha Brown. "But he had to protect a sprained ankle in the process. He ended up delivering a come from behind victory."
Three-time MVC Champion Jon DeGrave (Lake Villa, Ill.) had the best-qualifying time of the day in the 400-meter hurdles clocking in at 52.12. The senior looks to win his third straight conference title in the 400 hurdles to join the likes of UNI's Joey Woody and Cory Goos, who have accomplished the feat. Joining DeGrave in the finals tomorrow will be sophomore Travis Marsh (Ankeny, Iowa), who snagged the last spot in the finals in 54.36.
"Jon is still a little conservative over the first five hurdles," said Brown. "He pulled away from the field at the eighth hurdle and finished strong."
Senior Shaun James (Lawrence, Kan.) will run in the finals of the 200 and 400-meters with performances of 21.73 and 48.70, respectively, in today's preliminary rounds. Sophomore Brett Wright (Longmont, Colo.) claimed a spot in the finals of the 200 clocking in at 21.84.
Junior Charlie Lapham (Golden Valley, Minn.) won the first heat in the preliminary round of the 800 in 1:52.56 to earn a spot in tomorrow's final.
Sophomore Ryan Flynn (Bettendorf, Iowa) was seventh in the 3,000-meter steeplechase crossing the line in 9:24.14.
The final day of the conference championship begins tomorrow at noon with the women's triple jump.