Oregon heads to Seattle for the 2009 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships Friday and Saturday at the Dempsey Indoor Facility. Competition begins at 12:30 p.m. on Friday with the women’s weight throw and concludes that night at 6:55 p.m. with the pentathlon’s 800 meters. Saturday, action begins at 11 a.m. with the heptathlon’s 60 meter hurdles and wraps up at 3 p.m. with the women’s 4x400 meter relay. For the second week in a row, the UO men are the nation’s No. 1 team according to the latest USTFCCCA poll. The women check in at No. 3.
The Oregon men won their first MPSF title in 2008, while the women finished third. The men have a slew of competitors returning who scored in the 2008 meet, including 800 meters champion Andrew Wheating. The Ducks also got points in 2008 from Ashton Eaton (third, long jump/fourth, 60 meter hurdles), Kenny Klotz (third, 3,000 meters), Diego Mercado (fourth, 5,000 meters), A.J. O’Connell (fourth, high jump), Colin Witter-Tilton (fourth, pole vault), Danny Mercado (fifth, 5,000 meters), Chad Barlow (seventh, 400 meters), Jordan Stray (seventh, weight throw) and Vernell Warren (seventh, long jump). Additionally, the Ducks have Galen Rupp, the 2007 MPSF champion at 3,000 meters, back after redshirting the 2008 season to prepare for the Beijing Olympics.
On the women’s side, the Ducks return 2008 MPSF 400 meter champion Keshia Baker and mile winner Alexandra Kosinski, as well as Melissa Gergel (second, pole vault), Zoe Buckman (second, 800 meters), Nicole Blood (third, mile), Zoe Nelson (fourth, 5,000 meters), Jamesha Youngblood (fifth, long jump), Erin Funkhouser (sixth, pentathlon), Megan Maloney (seventh, weight throw) and Mandy White (seventh, 60 meters).
A complete list of entries will be posted on www.gohuskies.com Thursday night.
For live results of the MPSF Championships, check http://gohuskies.cstv.com/sports/c-track/spec-rel/022608aaa.html. Final results will also be posted on www.goDucks.com.
IN THE INDOOR RECORD BOOKS
The number of Oregon indoor records that have fallen in 2009 continues to rise. That tally stands at 14 entering the MPSF Championships. Every men’s indoor record between 800 meters and 5,000 meters has fallen in 2009. That list includes Galen Rupp’s American indoor 5,000 meter record of 13:18.12 that he ran Feb. 13 at Fayetteville. His time also set a collegiate record and broke Alberto Salazar’s 1981 school record (13:22.6). Rupp also set the American collegiate record at 3,000 meters at the Reebok Indoor Championships in Boston, running 7:44.69.
Other records on the men’s side include the 800 meters (Andrew Wheating, 1:47.03), mile (Matthew Centrowitz, 3:57.92), heptathlon (Ashton Eaton, 6,174 points) and distance medley relay (9:29.39). For the women, records have come in the 60 meters (Amber Purvis, 7.34), 200 meters (Purvis, 24.15), 400 meters (Keshia Baker, 53.38), 5,000 meters (Lindsey Scherf, 15:55.67), 60 meter hurdles (Brianne Theisen, 8.65), distance medley relay (11:05.08), long jump (Jamesha Youngblood, 20-9.25) and heptathlon (Theisen, 4,181). Also, current student athletes ran on the 2007 record-setting women’s 4x400 meter relay team, (Leah Worthen, Baker).