For the second year in a row, Oregon will send a contingent consisting mainly of throwers to the John Knight Twilight on the campus of Western Oregon University. Action gets underway Friday at 2 p.m. at McArthur Field.
The women are No. 2 in this week’s USTFCCCA poll, while the men are No. 4.
Follow Oregon’s Twitter feed, @OregonTF, as well as Western Oregon’s Twitter: @WOUWolves.
Some of Oregon’s leading throwers will compete at the John Knight Twilight. Among those are Jillian Weir in the women’s hammer (No. 3 in school history at 192-8/58.74m) and Laura Bobek in the women’s discus (No. 5 in school history at 172-6/52.58m). Weir is also entered in the discus. Other entries for the women include Lauren Sens, who PR’d in the hammer a week ago at the Pepsi Team Invitational (159-4/48.58m), and Annie Whitfield and Rachel Sherrell in the javelin.
The men will be well represented with Tanner Harris, Miles Walk and Marcus McArdle in the hammer. Walk threw a PR in the hammer last week at the Pepsi meet, (191-0/58.22m), while McArdle is from nearby Independence, Ore., and attended Western Oregon in 2012 as a freshman, but did not compete in track.
The men also have Ryan Hunter-Simms in the shot put and discus, Ron Perkins in the shot put, Bradley Laubacher in the high jump, Trent Warren in the 800 meters and Hank Morrison in the 1,500 meters.
Two Ducks are listed on the latest 2013 Bowerman Watch lists. Sprinters Mike Berry and English Gardner are each one of 10 student-athletes on their respective watch lists.
SEASON TICKETS, NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS ON SALE
Fans interested in purchasing all-session four-day passes for the June 5-8 NCAA Championships, as well as single meet tickets for the for the Ducks’ 2013 schedule, may do so now.
To purchase Oregon track and field tickets, go online to goducks.com/tracktickets, call 1-800-WEBFOOT or visit the Athletic Ticket Office located in the Moshofsky Center.
2013 PEPSI TEAM INVITATIONAL RECAP
Wins by Mac Fleet, Mike Berry, Jeramy Elkaim, Johnathan Cabral and Greg Skipper propelled the fourth-ranked Men of Oregon to victory over No. 1 Texas A&M at the April 6 Pepsi Team Invitational. The No. 2 women dropped a tightly contested battle to the third-ranked Aggies on a showery spring afternoon before 5,367 fans at Historic Hayward Field. The men finished with 194.5 points, followed by Texas A&M with 180.5, Washington State with 165.5 and Washington with 129.5. The Aggies won the women’s meet with 201 points, followed by Oregon with 181, No. 15 Washington with 146 and the Cougars with 138. Fleet won the 800 meters, his first race at Hayward since 2010, in a personal best 1:48.70. Other winners for the men were Elkaim in the 5,000 (13:57.24), Cabral in the 110 meter hurdles (13.81) where he remains undefeated on the season, Berry in the 400 (46.20),and Skipper in the hammer (216-4/65.94m). The 4x400 relay of Kevin Anding, Arthur Delaney, Jack Galpin and Berry timed 3:06.31 in finishing second, which was the sixth fastest in school history. For the women, redshirt freshman Jenna Prandini continued her breakout season with a win in the long jump (19-7/5.97m) and a runner-up finish in the 100 meters (11.47, No. 3 in UO history). Jillian Weir, another newcomer, was impressive in the field. The sophomore transfer from Long Beach State won the hammer with a best throw of 192-8/58.74m (No. 3 on UO career list). Weir was also fourth in both the shot put (46-4/14.12m) and discus (145-0/44.21m). Other winners for the women included Phyllis Francis in the 400 (52.55), Laura Roesler in the 800 (2:03.94), Jordan Hasay in the 1,500 (4:20.19) and Lauren Crockett in the high jump (5-7.75/1.72m).
TEXAS RELAYS / STANFORD INVITATIONAL RECAP
Jordan Hasay and Johnathan Carbal highlighted Oregon’s spring break in Texas and California March 27-30. At the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays, Cabral won the 110 meter hurdles with the fastest time in the nation this season, 13.33 (w+2.6). Had Cabral’s time been wind legal, it would have broken Eric Mitchum’s 2004 school record of 13.38. Also at the Texas Relays, the women’s 4x100 meter relay team finished third in 43.93. The Ducks’ quartet of Phyllis Francis, English Gardner, Chizoba Okodogbe and Jenna Prandini came through the line with the fourth fastest time in school history. Greg Skipper continued his strong early season with a six-foot personal best in the men’s hammer to finish second overall. The freshman from Oregon City, Ore., had a best throw of 216-5/65.96m, which ranks as the fifth-best in the nation this season and the ninth-best in school history. Dakotah Keys set personal bests in three events to finish fourth in the decathlon with 7,743 points. Sam Crouser took second in the men’s javelin on his final throw, 248-8/75.80m, to move from sixth in second in the final standings. He later took fifth in the discus with a personal best throw of 173-11/53.01m. At the Stanford Invitational, Hasay and Parker Stinson etched their names in the Ducks’ 10,000 meter record books. Hasay cruised through her first career 10,000 meters and finished as the top collegian and third overall in 32:46.68. Not only was that the top time in the nation this season, but it ranks as the second best in school history, trailing only Kathy Hayes’ 32:43.81 set in 1984. Stinson looked strong in his first race on the track in 2013, finishing second in the top heat of the men’s 10,000 meters in 28:34.71. He was just behind The Masters’ John Gilbertson, who won in 28:30.35. Stinson’s time was a :26 personal best as the junior from Austin, Texas, moved up to seventh on UO career 10K list. In the second section of the men’s 10,000, freshman Matthew Melancon from Eugene, Ore., was third in a personal best 29:31.82. Senior Anne Kesselring won the top section of the women’s 800 meters in 2:05.76. That was the fourth fastest time in the NCAA this season. Becca Friday followed with a runner up finish in her heat, 2:06.00, which was the fifth fastest among collegians this season.
CABRAL, HASAY NAMED PAC-12 ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
After running nation-leading times in their respective events, Johnathan Cabral and Jordan Hasay were named the Pac-12 Conference outdoor track athletes of the week For March 27-30. Cabral won the 110 meter hurdles at the Texas Relays in a nation-leading 13.33. The wind was just above legal (+2.6) or that would have been a school record and tied for the second-fastest time in Pac-12 history. Hasay was the top collegian and third overall in the 10,000 meters at the Stanford Invitational. Running her first career 10K, Hasay finished behind a pair of professional runners in a time of 32:46.68. That time leads the NCAA in 2013, and ranks second in school history and fifth in Pac-12 history.
OREGON PREVIEW RECAP
De’Anthony Thomas’ three victories – including a meet record in the 4x100 meter relay – highlighted the Oregon Preview March 16 at Hayward Field. Thomas opened the day by anchoring the 4x100 meter relay to a meet record 40.35. He teamed with Dior Mathis, Arthur Delaney and B.J. Kelley on some sharp early season exchanges to break the 21 year-old meet record of 40.46 set by Oregon in 1992. Thomas followed that with his riveting performance in the men’s 100 meters in an all-conditions personal best 10.31. Thomas put a wrap on the day with another command run in the 200 meters. He eased down the homestretch in 21.17. Sophomore Johnathan Cabral set a meet record in winning the 110 meter hurdles in 13.68. Laura Bobek opened her outdoor season with a personal best in the discus of 172-6/52.58m to move up to No. 5 on the UO all-time list. Greg Skipper had a six-foot PR to win at 210-10/64.26m. Those were but a handful of Oregon’s 15 events wins on the day. Also, Liz Brenner made her track and field debut in the javelin and took third with a best throw of 141-5/43.10m. It was the fourth varsity sport as a Duck for the freshman from Portland, Ore.
THOMAS, SKIPPER NAMED PAC-12 ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
De’Anthony Thomas and Greg Skipper were named the Pac-12 men’s track and field athletes of the week, respectively, following their performances at the March 16 Oregon Preview. Thomas won three events at the Oregon Preview, including anchoring the 4x100 meter relay to a meet-record 40.35. Thomas followed up with an all-conditions personal best in the men’s 100 meters of 10.31 that ranked second nationally. In his first meet back from an injury that caused him to redshirt the 2012 season, Skipper won the hammer throw at the Oregon Preview with a throw of 210-10/64.26m. That was a six-foot personal best and ranked as the No. 3 throw nationally in the young 2013 season.
DUCKS WIN FOURTH STRAIGHT NCAA WOMEN INDOOR
The Women of Oregon dug their way out of a deep deficit to overcome nearly a dozen teams and win their fourth straight NCAA Indoor Track and Field national title March 8-9 at the Randal Tyson Center in Fayetteville, Ark.
The women locked up the meet with their only event win of the Championships – the 4x400 meter relay – to secure the title with 56 points. Kansas was second with 44, with Louisiana State third with 43 and host Arkansas fourth with 42.5.
The team of English Gardner, Chizoba Okodogbe, Laura Roesler and Phyllis Francis won the 4x400 relay for the Ducks in a school record 3:30.22. Gardner put Oregon ahead on the opening leg and Oregon never looked back. Gardner timed 53.64 on the opening leg, followed by Okodogbe’s 52.54, Roesler’s 52.64 and Francis’s impressive 51.42 as the Ducks won the indoor 4x4 crown for the second time in four years
Oregon became just the second team to win four consecutive NCAA Indoor titles, joining LSU which won five straight from 1993-97.
The Men of Oregon proved resurgent too with Elijah Greer winning the 800 meters en route to a top 10 finish.
The women opened the final day in 11th place with nine points, but began their climb with a gutsy run from Becca Friday in the mile. The senior from Bellingham, Wash., rallied from ninth place to sixth on the final lap, crossing the tape in 4:39.23 for three team points.
Also in the mile, a tired Anne Kesselring took 10th in 4:50.77. Kesselring anchored the Ducks’ distance medley relay less than 24 hours earlier.
Next, it was Francis’ time to step up in the 400 meters. She came back from a ragged semifinal run on Friday to place second in her heat and fourth overall in 52.01. That was worth five team points as the Ducks began to gain ground on Kansas and Arkansas and keep pace with LSU.
The Ducks then jumped to second place with 12 points in the 60 meters.
Gardner, the 2012 NCAA champion, was the runner-up in 7.15 seconds, finishing just behind Central Florida’s Aurieyall Scott, who won in 7.13. The sophomore from Voorhees, N.J., was just a half step behind Scott the whole race as the two thrilled the Randal Tyson Center crowd with another entertaining NCAA final.
The Ducks also got a huge performance in the 60 from freshman Jenna Prandini, who placed fifth in 7.38. The Clovis, Calif., native came into the meet as the No. 12 seed.
Roseler put the Ducks into the lead for the first time with her runner up finish in the 800 meters. The junior from Fargo, N.D., crossed the tape in an impressive 2:02.32, finishing behind only Natoya Goule of LSU (2:02.00). Roesler was critical in breaking up the Tigers’ powerful 800 tandem of Goule and Charlene Lipsey, who was third in 2:05.02.
Roesler’s runner-up finish also broke one of the oldest records in the Oregon history book. She took down the 31 year-old mark of 2:03.89 run by Leann Warren in 1982.
Oregon led with 37 points at that point, followed by LSU with 34 and Kansas with 33 with three events left: the triple jump, the 3,000 meters and the 4x4.
The Jayhawks jumped back to the lead with a win in the triple jump, upping their team total to 43. The Tigers’ also netted five triple jump points to pass Oregon with 39.
The Ducks responded with Jordan Hasay and Alexi Pappas in the 3,000 and the senior duo who led Oregon to the 2012 NCAA Cross Country title pushed the Ducks in front for good. Hasay fought her way to a runner-up finish in 9:06.61. She tucked into the pack as the leaders pulled away midway through the race, and then worked her way up through her competitors to claim eight crucial team points.
Pappas, a senior transfer from Dartmouth in her final appearance as a Duck, added another point for Oregon with her eighth place finish in 9:12.38.
That gave Oregon a 46-43 lead on Kansas heading to the 4x4, where the Ducks slammed the door.
On Friday’s first day of competition, Hasay was fourth in the 5,000 meters in a school record 15:40.30. The senior from Arroyo Grande, Calif., lowered Alex Kosinski’s previous mark of 15:44.60 by more than :04 in scoring five points toward the team race. Pappas was sixth in that race in 15:47.13 – the third best time in school history.
Meanwhile Greer and Mike Berry’s runner-up finish in the 400 meters helped the Men of Oregon tie for sixth with 22 points.
Arkansas won the team title with 74 points, followed by Florida (59), Wisconsin (33), Texas A&M (30), Texas Tech (28) and Oregon and Arizona (22).
Greer looked smooth from the opening gun and tucked into second on the shoulder of Penn State’s Casimir Loxsom for the first 600 meters. On the bell lap, the junior from Lake Oswego, Ore., sprinted around Loxsom to the lead and finished clear of the field to win in 1:47.13. Loxsom was next in 1:47.23.
Greer became the first Duck ever to win an indoor 800 meter title. Junior Boru Guyota was eighth in the 800 in 1:51.04.
Like he did in Boise last year, Berry won his 400 final heat only to see another runner steal the title in the second heat. The junior from Seattle, Wash., sprinted clear of the field to win his section in 45.83 only to watch Errol Nolan of Houston take the second heat and the overall title in 45.75.
Still, Berry’s runner-up finish was the best ever for a Duck in the indoor 400 meters.
Also for the men, Johnathan Cabral finished strong to earn a sixth place finish in the 60 meter hurdles. The sophomore from Calabasas, Calif., leaned at the tape to finish in 7.73 seconds, tying his personal best and scoring three team points.
Dakotah Keys took ninth in the heptathlon, scoring a personal best 5,757 points. That was the third best total in school history.
DUCKS CLAIM FIRST NCAA WOMEN’S CROSS COUNTRY TITLE IN 25 YEARS
Led by a courageous effort by seniors Jordan Hasay, Alexi Pappas and Katie Conlon, the Women of Oregon captured their first NCAA cross country national title since 1987 last November in Louisville’s E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park. Hasay led an impressive pack of Ducks who were in the race’s top 50 nearly the entire 6,000 meter distance. Oregon ended up winning easily with 114 points, followed by Providence with 183, Stanford with 198 and Florida State with 202. Hasay looked strong in the lead pack throughout, only falling to Iowa State’s Betsy Saina and Abbey D’Agostino of Dartmouth at the tape. After a sprint to the finish, Saina was the 2012 individual champion in 19:27.9, followed by D’Agostino and Hasay both in 19:28.6. Hasay, from Arroyo Gande, Calif., willed her teammates around the course in impressive fashion. Pappas, a transfer from Dartmouth, ran just a step off the lead pack the entire race, and finished eighth in 19:43.9. Conlon was the surprise of the day for the Ducks. The transfer from NAIA Jamestown College in North Dakota had been the Ducks’ fifth or sixth runner during the regular season, but put on a strong kick over the final third of the race, passing a couple dozen runners to place 39th in 20:15.0. Then it was freshman Allie Woodward coming to the line as Oregon’s fourth runner. The Green Bay, Wis., native was 44th overall in 20:19.5. Freshman Annie Leblanc capped the scoring for the Ducks, finishing 68th in 20:31.5. Oregon also had senior Sarah Penney 105th in 20:50.7 and freshman Abbey Leonardi 162nd in 21:12.2. It was the third NCAA women’s cross country title in school history. The other came in 1987 and 1983 under coach Tom Heinonen.
OREGON’S NCAA CHAMPIONS
The 2013 Women’s Indoor Track & Field national title was the 21st NCAA championship in school history. The others are men’s outdoor track & field in 1962, 1964, 1965, 1970 and 1984, women’s outdoor track & field in 1985, men’s indoor track & field in 2009, women’s indoor track & field in 2010, 2011 and 2012, men’s cross country in 1971, 1973, 1974, 1977, 2007 and 2008, women’s cross country in 1983, 1987 and 2012, and men’s basketball in 1939. Oregon’s acrobatics and tumbling team also won NCATA national titles in 2011-12.
NCAA OUTDOOR TRACK & FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS COMING TO TRACKTOWN
Historic Hayward Field will host the 2013 NCAA Championships June 5-8. It will be the 11th time that the historic venue has played host to the national meet. Previously, Hayward Field hosted the NCAA Championships in 1962, 1964, 1972, 1978, 1984, 1988, 1991, 1996, 2001, 2010. Only Chicago, with 13 championships between 1921 and 1936, has hosted more NCAA meets.
In addition to the annual Prefontaine Classic, Hayward Field has recently served as host to the 2008 and 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials and the 2009 and 2011 USA Track & Field Championships.
Eugene will again host the NCAA Championships in 2014, as well as the IAAF World Junior Championships.
For more information on the NCAA Championships, go to www.ncaa.com/trackandfield.