Wichita State Shockers

Wichita State’s Breanne Borman fights through leg injuries to help Shockers at MVC outdoor meet

Wichita State’s Breanne Borman.
Wichita State’s Breanne Borman. Wichita State athletics

Wichita State’s Breanne Borman hasn’t completed a heptahlon this spring. Her right knee required a cortisone shot on Tuesday and her right foot is tight with plantar fasciitis.

To which, she replied, give me more work this weekend at the Missouri Valley Conference track and field championships.

When healthy, she is one of the MVC’s top multi-athletes and started the spring by finishing second in pentathlon at the MVC’s indoor meet and 12th in the NCAA indoor championships in March. Borman won the MVC’s indoor high jump (5 feet, 8 inches) in February and the outdoor title (5-7) in 2015.

On Friday, she starts the MVC meet in the heptathlon, unsure of performing at past levels or finishing. Her attitude is that she can produce unexpected points for WSU’s women’s team, which is favored to win the meet.

8 MVC outdoor titles won by Wichita State’s women

7 MVC outdoor titles won by Wichita State’s men

“It is scary,” she said. “I’m not really all over the Valley lists. I haven’t had good performances, yet … and the team’s not expecting me to have a ton of points right now. It will be nice to score those points and try to win the championship.”

Borman, a junior from De Soto, Mo., wants to get through the heptathlon, which ends Saturday, and then prepare for the high jump, long jump, javelin and the 100-meter hurdles.

“And I’m trying to convince them to let me on the 400 (relay team), but it’s not looking good,” she said. “I just want to score points for the team.”

WSU coach Steve Rainbolt sees the heptathlon and the javelin as two important events when he charts his team’s performances and expected points.

“It’s a head start,” he said. “We should stake ourselves to a lead and then everybody else is chasing us. (Borman’s) going to this meet without a lot of representation on the form chart. We’ll really be counting on her to get some points, certainly in the multi and in the javelin and in the high jump.”

Borman finished the first day of the heptathlon in ninth place at the Texas Relays in late March. She didn’t finish. Two weeks later, she led the heptathlon at the K.T. Woodman Classic after the first day.

“Couldn’t finish that one, either,” she said. “I’ve been dealing with a lot of injury issues.”

Plantar fasciitis. A cyst on the back of her knee. On Tuesday, she took a cortisone shot to the front of the right knee to help the pain from what she fears may be a meniscal tear.

“I’m trying to survive,” she said. “I’m taking it day by day, hoping to get through the meet. I’m feeling heathier than I have been.”

WSU’s men’s team is also favored to win the MVC title after finishing second behind Southern Illinois last season. The Shockers last won the outdoor title in 2010 and finished second the past four seasons. The men are also dealing with injury issues. Freshman jumper Jared Belardo, who is already qualified for the NCAA West prelims in the long jump and triple jump, is slowed by a sprained ankle. Hunter Veith, who ranks first in the MVC decathlon with 7,300 points and second in the long jump behind Belardo, is hampered by a calf strain.

The WSU women are two-time defending champions and have won four of the past five.

“On the men’s side, if we have a nice, solid meet and just take care of business … it will just be awfully difficult for another team to beat us,” Rainbolt said. “On the women’s side, it’s much closer. The good thing about our group is that they’ve won it the last two years, and both times have not been the favorites. I feel like they’ve got a sense for how to go the meet and compete and win a championship.”

Paul Suellentrop: 316-269-6760, @paulsuellentrop

MVC outdoor championships

When: Friday-Sunday

Where: Terre Haute, Ind.

Internet: ESPN3.com