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Table of Contents Introduction Track Town, USA 2009 NCAA Indoor Championship 2009 Pac-10 Women’s Title 2009 Pac-10 Men’s Title 2009 NCAA Championships

2 4 6 8 10

The 2009 Season 2010 Schedule 2010 NCAA Championships Men’s Preview Women’s Preview

12 13 14 16

Staff Profiles Vin Lananna, Associate Athletic Director Assistant Coach Profiles Support Staff Profiles Oregon Media Services

18 22 33 35

Men’s Team Information Team Roster Featured Athlete Profiles Featured Newcomer Profiles Others to Watch

36 37 92 95

Women’s Team Information Team Roster Featured Athlete Profiles Featured Newcomer Profiles Others to Watch

96 97 144 148

Inside Track Town, U.S.A. Historic Hayward Field Philip H. Knight

149 150

Hayward Field Statistics Top Performances at Hayward Field Attendance Records Home Meet Records

154 157 158

Coaching Legends Bill Hayward Bill Bowerman Bill Dellinger Tom Heinonen

160 161 162 163

In Memoriam Steve Prefontaine Bill McChesney, Jr.

164 165

2009 Season in Review Men’s 2009 Season Review Men’s 2009 Featured Performances Women’s 2009 Season Review Women’s 2009 Featured Performances 2009 Cross Country Season in Review

166 167 168 169 170

Men’s History Top Outdoor Performances Top Indoor Performances NCAA History NCAA All-Americans Conference History Dual Meet History Individual Honors University Honors Academic Honors Letterwinners

172 174 175 177 180 182 184 187 188 189

Women’s History Top Outdoor Performances Top Indoor Performances NCAA History NCAA All-Americans Individual Honors Conference History Dual Meet History University Honors Academic Honors Letterwinners

192 194 195 196 197 198 200 201 202 204

Dual Sport Legends Dual Sport Letterwinners


The University of Oregon University President Athletics Director

207 208

About the Cover Designed by Keith Stedman of the Oregon Media Services office, the 2010 multi-media guide cover features three NCAA Champions and six Pac-10 Champions. From the far left, that number includes Keshia Baker (400 meters), Cyrus Hostetler (javelin), Jamesh Youngblood (long jump & triple jump), Brianne Theisen (heptathlon), Andrew Wheating (800 meters) and Ashton Eaton (decathlon). Theisen, Wheating and Eaton are additionally NCAA Champions. Credits The 2010 Oregon Track and Field Multi-Media Guide was written and designed by Greg Walker with editorial assistance provided by Michael Reilly. Additional statistical research and editorial content provided by Ross Concillo, Chris Geraghty, Tom Heinonen, Dave Hirsch, Andy McNamara, Emily Neal, C.L. Shaffer, Geoff Thurner, Joe Waltasti, Andria Wenzel, Patrick Werhane and Dave Williford. Photography courtesy of John Becker, George Beltran, Rio Capper, R.M. Collins III, Paul Conners, Dave Coskey, Steve Dykes, Eric Evans, John Gillespie, John Giustina, Jeff Golden, Don Gosney, Stan Green, Tony Harper, Kurt Jensen, Jeff Johnson, Phil Johnson, Norm Maves, Warren Morgan, Kevin Morris, Oregona, Oscar Palmquist, Bill Ross, Geoff Thurner, Chris Todd, Betty Udesen, Michael Underwood, Bob Welch, Randy Wood, Herb Yamanaka, David Zahn and UO Archives.


2010 NCAA Championships June 9-12 Historic Hayward Field University Quick Facts President: Richard Lariviere Assistant to the President for Intercollegiate Athletics: Dan Williams Athletic Director: Mike Bellotti Faculty Representative: James O’Fallon Facility: Hayward Field (10,500), founded 1919. Conference: Pacific-10 ( Enrollment: 22,300 Location: Eugene, Oregon Mascot: Ducks Colors: Yellow and Green (Pantone 342, Pantone Yellow or 109) Duck Ticket Office: (541) 346-4461 1-800-WEB-FOOT Athletic Dept. Phone: (541) 346-4481 Athletic Dept. Phone (TTY): (541) 346-5418 Media Services Contact: Greg Walker SID E-mail: Media Services Phone: (541) 346-5488 Media Services FAX: (541) 346-5449 Press Box Phone: (541) 346-4497 or 346-4496 Web Site: NCAA Championships: 15 Men’s Outdoor Track: 1961, 1964, 1965, 1970, 1984 Men’s Indoor Track: 2009 Women’s Outdoor Track: 1985 Men’s Cross Country: 1971, 1973, 1974, 1977, 2007, 2008 Women’s Cross Country: 1983, 1987 Conference Championships: 52 Men’s Track & Field : 1924, 1934, 1965, 1967, 1978, 1979, 1986, 1990, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009 Women’s Track & Field: 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1991, 1992, 2009 Men’s Cross Country: 1969, 1970, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1982, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1995, 2006, 2007, 2008 Women’s Cross Country: 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995

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Historic Hayward Field 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials 2009 Pac-10 Track & Field Championships 2009 USA Track & Field Championships 2010 NCAA Track & Field Championships 2011 USA Track & Field Championships 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials 2013 NCAA Track & Field Championships 2014 NCAA Track & Field Championships

Track Town, USA

NCAA Indoor Champs

Galen Rupp, A.J. Acosta NCAA Distance Medley

Ashton Eaton NCAA Heptathlon Champion

a, Chad Barlow, Andrew Wheating Relay Champions

Galen Rupp NCAA 3,000 Meters & 5,000 Meters Champion

Pac-10 Women’s Title Brianne Theisen Pac-10 Heptathlon Champion

Keshia Baker Pac-10 400 Meters Champion

Jamesha Youngblood Pac-10 Long Jump & Triple Jump Champion

Zoe Buckman Pac-10 800 Meters Champion

Rachel Yurkovich Pac-10 Javelin Champion Melissa Gergel Pac-10 Pole Vault Champion

Pac-10 Men’s Title Galen Rupp Pac-10 10,000 Meters Champion

Pac-10 1,500 Meter Sweep Matthew Centrowitz Pac-10 1,500 Meters Champion

Andrew Wheating Pac-10 800 Meters Champion

Cyrus Hostetler Pac-10 Javelin Champion Chris Winter Pac-10 Steeplechase Champion

Ashton Eaton Pac-10 Decathlon Champion

NCAA Runners-up

Andrew Wheating NCAA 800 Meters Champion

Brianne Theisen NCAA Heptathlon Champion

Galen Rupp NCAA 5,000 Meters & 10,000 Meters Champion

Rachel Yurkovich NCAA Javelin Champion

Ashton Eaton NCAA Decathlon Champion


2010 Schedule Indoor Track and Field Schedule Date



January 16

UW Indoor Preview

Seattle, Wash.

January 29–30

Texas A&M Challenge

College Station, Texas

February 12–13

Tyson Invitational

Fayetteville, Ark.

February 12–13

Husky Classic

Seattle, Wash.

February 26–27

Mountain Pacific Championships

Seattle, Wash.

March 6

Iowa State Qualifier

Ames, Iowa

March 6

UW Last Chance Qualifier

Seattle, Wash.

March 12–13

NCAA Indoor Championships

Fayetteville, Ark.

Outdoor Track and Field Schedule Date



March 20

Oregon Preview

Eugene, Ore.

March 26–27

Stanford Invitational

Stanford, Calif.

March 31–April 3

Texas Relays

Austin, Texas

April 10

Pepsi Team Invitational

Eugene, Ore.

April 14–15

Mt. SAC Relays Heptathlon/Decathlon

Azusa, Calif.

April 15–17

Mt. SAC Relays

Walnut, Calif.

April 17

Men of Oregon vs. UCLA

Eugene, Ore.

April 22–24

Penn Relays

Philadelphia, Pa.

April 30–May 1

Oregon Relays

Eugene, Ore.

Oregon, Illinois (men), Missouri, Texas A&M, Washington

Presented by Oregon Community Credit Union May 8

Oregon Twilight

May 8–9

Pac-10 Conference Heptathlon/Decathlon

Eugene, Ore. Berkeley, Calif.

May 15–16

Pac-10 Conference Championships

Berkeley, Calif.

May 27–29

NCAA West Regional

Austin, Texas

June 9–12

NCAA Outdoor Championships

Eugene, Ore.

June 23–27

USA Junior National Championships

Des Moines, Iowa

June 23–27

USA Championships

Des Moines, Iowa


2010 NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS 2001 NCAA Championships at Hayward Field

1988 NCAA Championships at Hayward Field

2010 NCAA Championships Track Town, USA, is hosting the NCAA Championships at Historic Hayward Field June 9-12. Tickets are available on line at, via phone (1-800-932-3668/541-346-4461) or in person at the Athletic Ticket Office in the Len Casanova Center. The four-day, all-session ticket prices are $80 for reserved seating, $60 for adult general admission and $40 for youth and senior general admission and U of O students. For the first time in its history, the NCAA Championships will feature a streamlined competition schedule with each of the four days featuring only semifinals or finals. The 2010 Championships should also be among the most compelling in recent history with the reigning champion Texas A&M men’s and women’s teams defending their titles against the host school, Oregon, which finished as the runner-up in both races a season ago in Fayetteville, Ark. The Ducks feature three defending NCAA Champions on their current roster, including senior Ashton Eaton in the men’s decathlon, senior Andrew Wheating in the men’s 800 meters and junior Brianne Theisen in the women’s heptathlon. The talent traveling from around the nation to Track Town, USA, will be impressive. The men alone figure to have 14 of the 19 individual event champions back to defend their crowns in 2010, including every running event between 100 and 1,500 meters. In addition to Eaton (decathlon) and Wheating (800 meters), the list of returning NCAA men’s champions includes Trindon Holliday of Louisiana State (100 meters), Charles Clark of Florida State (200 meters), Jonathan Borlee of Florida State (400 meters), German Fernandez of Oklahoma State (1,500 meters), Ronnie Ash of Bethune-Cookman (110 meter hurdles), Jeshua Anderson of Washington State (400 meter hurdles), Jason Colwick of Rice (pole vault), Ngonidzashe Makusha of Florida State (long jump), Will Claye of Oklahoma (triple jump), Ryan Whiting of Arizona State (shot put), Marcel Lomnicky of Virginia Tech (hammer) and Chris Hill of Georgia (javelin). Conversely, the women’s competition looks to have Bowerman Award finalist Porscha Lucas of Texas A&M back to defend her title in the 200 meters, in addition to Kimberly Williams of Florida State, who is the defending NCAA champ in both the long jump and the triple jump. Other women looking to defend include Joanna Atkins of Auburn (400 meters), Angela Bizzarri of Illinois (5,000 meters), Kylie Hutson of Indiana State (pole vault), Mariam Kevkhishvili of Florida (shot put) and Theisen in the heptathlon. If the 2009 Championships are any indication, the 2010 team races could come down to the final event. The women’s competition was decided in the final 20 minutes of the meet, while the men’s came down to the last event, the 4x400 meter relay, with four different teams — Oregon, Florida, Florida State and Texas A&M — vying for the title before the Aggies eked out a two-point victory. This will be the Championships’ first appearance in Eugene since 2001, and will be the 10th time overall that Hayward Field has hosted the NCAA meet. Chicago (13) and Eugene will be the only cities to have hosted at least 10 NCAA Track & Field Championships.


1996 NCAA Championships at Hayward Field


And Now for an Encore The 2009 men’s track and field season was inarguably one of the best in program history. In fact, with a national championships indoors — the school’s first, nonetheless — a runner-up trophy outdoors and a third straight Pac-10 title to go with an NCAA championship in cross country in the fall, 2009 may indeed have been the best all-around season ever witnessed by Track Town, USA. So what then does 2010 do for an encore? Competing for an unprecedented fourth straight Pac-10 title and hosting the 2010 NCAA Championships for a start? Associate Athletic Director Vin Lananna welcomes back a host of talent, led by NCAA champions Ashton Eaton (both the NCAA indoor heptathlon and outdoor decathlon) and Andrew Wheating (800 meters). Those two were also Pac-10 champions in their event, and will be joined by fellow league winners Matthew Centrowitz (1,500 meters) and Cyrus Hostetler (javelin).

Middle Distance

Luke Puskedra

Aside from Galen Rupp’s turn in the 1,500 meters at the Pac-10 Championships (second place), Oregon returns everyone who ran at 800 or 1,500 meters during the championship season, including Wheating, senior, and Centrowitz, who is only a sophomore outdoors. Not only did Wheating win the 800 at the Pac-10 meet, but he was also third in the 1,500. Senior Jordan McNamara was also a Pac-10 finalists at 1,500 meters, while junior Travis Thompson ran the 800. McNamara went on to make the finals in the 1,500 at both the NCAA Championships and the USA Track & Field Championships. The Ducks also welcome back All-American A.J. Acosta, a junior who redshirted the 2009 outdoor season after helping the Ducks win the NCAA distance medley relay title indoors. Acosta finished second in the 1,500 meters at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships, to go along with his fifth-place finish in the 5,000. Others who will contend in the middle distances include freshmen Mac Fleet (San Diego, Calif.) and Elijah Greer (Lake Oswego, Ore.).

Decathlon Eaton, a senior, accomplished the rare feat of winning both the NCAA indoor heptathlon and outdoor decathlon titles in the same academic season. He comes into the 2010 season as the two-time defending NCAA and Pac-10 champion. He also finished second in the decathlon at the USA Track & Field Championships to earn a spot on Team USA for the 2009 IAAF World Championships in Berlin, Germany. Eaton also surpassed the school record in the decathlon, scoring 8,241 points at the NCAA Championships, but that score was not wind-legal. Eaton is the school record holder in the indoor heptathlon (6,174 points).

Alex Wolff

Also returning in the decathlon are seniors Marshall Ackley and Aaron McVein. Ackley set and reset PRs virtually every time he competed in 2009. He finished second at the Pac-10 championships with 7,337 points, and then increased that to 7,470 points at the NCAA Championships, where he earned his first AllAmerica award. McVein also improved rapidly throughout the season, ultimately taking eighth at the Pac-10 Championships.

Throws Oregon’s throws groups will be even deeper in 2010 with no losses to graduation, the addition of freshman Michael VanDoren and the return of senior All-American Mike Simmons. The group is led by Hostetler, a senior who not only won the Pac-10 javelin last season, but also set school and Pac-10 records in the event with his throw of 272-10 at the Pepsi meet, which ranks fourth all-time in NCAA history. Hostetler went on to finish third at the NCAA Championships. He will be joined by fellow All-Americans Simmons and Alex Wolff, plus 2010 Pac-10 scorer Britton Nelson with one of the most impressive javelin corps in the country. Wolff, a senior and two-time AllAmerican, was third at the Pac-10 meet a year ago and 10th at the NCAA Championships. Nelson, a junior, was seventh at the Pac-10 meet in 2010. Simmons, who redshirted 2009 with an injury, was seventh at the 2008 Pac-10 Championships and ninth at the 2008 NCAA Championships. The Ducks also return junior Jordan Stray in the hammer. Stray was sixth in that event at the 2009 Pac-10 Championships and was an NCAA Championships qualifier in 2008. VanDoren, from Albany, Ore., should help immediately in the shot put and discus, while junior Scott Penny also has experience in the throwing events.

Marshall Ackley


MEN’S TEAM PREVIEW Distance Oregon sustained the biggest losses in the longer distances with the graduation of Rupp, the 2009 Bowerman Award winner who posted one of the greatest seasons of distance running in NCAA history during 2008-09. After winning the 2008 NCAA Cross Country title, he claimed three NCAA crowns indoors (3,000 meters, 5,000 meters and the distance medley relay) before an epic sweep at 5,000 and 10,000 meters outdoors. He was also the Pac-10 champion at 10,000 meters and placed second in the 1,500 meters. The Ducks will also be looking to replace 2009 Pac-10 steeplechase champion Chris Winter as well as Shadrack Biwott, who was second in both the 5,000 and 10,000 meters and ran eighth in the 5,000 at the NCAA Championships. Fortunately, there many veterans and newcomers ready to fill the void. All-Americans Luke Puskedra, Kenny Klotz, Danny Mercado, Diego Mercado, Puskedra finished fourth in the 10,000 meters at the Pac-10 meet, while he earned NCAA All-America honors for his sixth-place indoor finish in the 5,000 meters and his 11th-place outdoor finish at 10,000 meters. Danny Mercado scored in both the Pac-10 5,000 and 10,000 meters, while twin brother Diego scored at 10,000 meters and both were NCAA Championships qualifiers at that distance. Puskedra, Klotz, Danny Mercado and Centrowitz all earned All-America honors during the fall in cross country.

Chad Barlow

The freshmen include Bryce Burgess (Portland, Ore.), Ben DeJarnette (Mechansville, Va.), Mitchell Hunt (Fremont, Neb.) and Elliott Jantzer (Medford, Ore.). Oregon will also welcome Michael Maag, a transfer from Princeton, who was 10th in 5,000 meters at the 2009 NCAA Championships.

Sprints Seniors Chad Barlow and Eaton anchor a sprint and hurdle group that also features some exciting freshmen and sophomores. Barlow and Eaton both scored in the Pac-10 Championships at 400 meters, while Barlow was also an NCAA Championships qualifier at that distance. Both runners also were part of the 4x100 and 4x400 meter relay teams that finished seventh and third, respectively, at the conference meet. Filling out the roster are junior Vernell Warren, a jumper who is a key member of the relay teams, and sophomore Matt Butcher, who has Pac-10 experience in the 200 meters and relays. The Ducks have also added football’s LaMichael James, a freshman All-Amerca running back, to the sprint corps. James is a former Texas state champion in the 100 meters.

Jumps The jumps corps is one of the team’s up-and-coming groups, with established veterans Eaton and Warren bringing along sophomores Danny Marconi and Brian Schaudt. Warren took fourth in both the high jump and the long jump at the 2009 Pac-10 Championships and qualified for his first NCAA Championships in the long jump. Eaton had a monster long jump in 2009, a wind-aided 25-8 that would have cracked the school’s top 10.

Vernell Warren

Schaudt just missed scoring in the triple jump as a freshman, while Marconi looks to be on the verge of clearing 7-0 in the high jump. Decathlete McVein will also contribute in the high jump, an event he was ninth in at the 2009 Pac-10 meet. Senior long jumper Andre Crenshaw also rejoins the track team after completing his football eligibility.

Hurdles Sophomore Eric Hersey and junior David Klech pace the hurdle group, which will also receive some support from decathlete Ackley. Hersey was a Pac-10 scorer in the 110 meter hurdles and looks to be on the verge of a breakout season. Eaton is also capable of scoring in the 110 hurdles and actually had the Ducks best time last season (13.85). Klech impressed in the 400 meter hurdles during the dual meet with UCLA before an injury slowed him the remainder of the 2009 season. And then there’s Ackley, a surprising Pac-10 scorer in the 400 hurdles (eighth) who also was an NCAA Regional qualifier in the event.

Pole Vault Eaton and senior Colin Witter-Tilton give the Ducks a veteran presence in the pole vault. Eaton led all Ducks with a clearance at 16-9 in 2009, while Witter-Tilton was a 2008 Pac-10 scorer and NCAA Championships qualifier.


Jordan McNamara


Standing on Their Own Years of thoughtfully rebuilding the women’s program by Associate Athletic Director Vin Lananna paid off in 2009 as the Women of Oregon won their first Pac-10 title in 17 years and were the runners-up at the NCAA Track & Field Championships. The Ducks, who scored points in 20 of 21 events at the Pac-10 Championships, return six of their seven Pac-10 champions. That list includes NCAA and Pac-10 heptathlon champion Brianne Theisen, as well as 2009 league champs Keshia Baker (400 meters), Zoe Buckman (800 meters), Melissa Gergel (pole vault) and Jamesha Youngblood (long jump and triple jump). That list doesn’t even include seven-time All-American Nicole Blood, who was the 2008 league champion at 5,000 meters and the runner-up a season ago. Other returning All-Americans include Mattie Bridgmon (10,000 meters), Alexandra Kosinski (distance medley relay, cross country) and Amber Purvis (distance medley relay).

Nicole Blood

The Ducks also feature a bevy of school record-holders, including Purvis, who has a share of seven school marks (outdoor 100 meters, 200 meters, and 4x100 meter relay; indoor 60 meters, 200 meters, 4x400 meter relay and distance medley relay). Also in that pool are Baker (indoor and outdoor 400 meters, 4x100 meter relay and indoor 4x400 meter relay), Theisen (heptathlon, 100 meter hurdles, indoor pentathlon, indoor 60 meter hurdles), Youngblood (indoor and outdoor long jump, outdoor triple jump, 4x100 meter relay and indoor 4x400 meter relay), Claire Michel (steeplechase), Blood (distance medley relay), Buckman (distance medley relay), Kosinski (distance medley relay) and Mandy White (4x100 meter relay). Combine those marks with a recruiting class led by national prep runner of the year Jordan Hasay and the Duck women are poised to expand their own legacy.

Sprints Baker, a senior, is the two-time Pac-10 400 meter champion and has positioned herself as one of the top quarter-milers in the United States. She was fifth at that distance at the NCAA outdoor meet and sixth indoors. She’s also a key member of Oregon’s relay teams. Baker will be joined on the relay pool by Purvis, White, Theisen and Youngblood, in addition to a few newcomers. Purvis, a speedy sophomore, already holds every school record between 60 and 200 meters. Only a minor toe injury kept her from an NCAA Championships appearance last season, though she recovered in time to set the school mark in the 100 meters, 10.38, at the Pan American Junior Championships last summer. White, a junior, has been a consistent presence in the record-setting relays the past two years and looks to be on the verge of a breakout season in the sprints. While Theisen (heptathlon) and Youngblood (jumps) will concentrate their main focus elsewhere, both have been key members of the relay teams with NCAA experience. Oregon’s newcomers, a freshman and a pair of transfers, figure to make the sprint corps as deep as it’s ever been. Junior Michele Williams is an NCAA Division II qualifier from Adams State, while sophomore Camilla Dencer is a rare 400/800 meter runner from UCLA. The wildcard might be unheralded freshman Alexandria Davidson who showed tremendous development in the fall.

Jasmine Kelly

Heptathlon The heptathletes produced an NCAA champion, two All-Americans and trio of Pac-10 scorers in 2009. That will be difficult to match in 2010 with the graduation of Pac-10 runner-up Kalindra McFadden (now a volunteer assistant for the Ducks), but having Theisen back as the defending national champion is no small consolation. Theisen was also the Canadian national champion in 2009 and represented Team Canada at the IAAF World Championships in Berlin. At the Pac-10 meet, she scored in the heptathlon, high jump, long jump and 4x400 meter relay team and enters her junior year (sophomore indoors) as one of the best allaround athletes in the nation. She will be joined by senior Erin Funkhouser, who was eighth at the Pac-10 meet in 2009, and freshmen Melanie Vertrees.

Middle Distance Buckman and Kosinski combined with Blood to score 25 points in the 800 and 1,500 meters at the 2009 Pac-10 Championships and all three return for 2010. Buckman, senior, was the league 800 meter champion and just missed the finals at the NCAA Championships. Kosinski, a junior, scored in both the 1,500 (third) and 800 (fifth) at the league meet and all three earned All-America status on the Ducks’ NCAA Indoor fifth place distance medley relay team. Hasay leads an influx of talent to the middle distances, joining fellow freshmen Rebecca Friday, Anne Kesselring, Sarah Penney, and Chloé Steinbeck, as well as Dencer. Hasay’s college career got off to a flying start in the fall when she won All-America honors at the NCAA Cross Country championships (18th) and was named the Pac-10 newcomer of the year. Kesselring is also an intriguing overseas addition to the squad with a personal best in the 800 of 2:04.96.

Alexandra Kosinski


WOMEN’S TEAM PREVIEW Jumps Youngblood, a junior, now owns every horizontal jumps record at the school, save the indoor triple jump mark. She blossomed as a sophomore, becoming the first Duck to capture both the Pac-10 long jump and triple jump title; in fact, she’s just the second person in league history to pull off the rare double. She went on to score in the long jump at both the NCAA Outdoor (third) and Indoor (fifth) championships. Veteran junior Amy Skofstad also returns in the vertical jumps. In the high jump, senior Jasmine Kelly became a Pac-10 scorer for the first time with a fourth-place finish in 2009 and looks to take that next step to the NCAA Championships in 2010. She will be joined in the high jump by freshmen Kelly Petaja and Maggie Pietka. Theisen is also a Pac-10 level scorer in both the long and high jump, while fellow heptathletes Funkhouser and Vertrees will add depth in the jumps.

Distance Seniors Blood and Bridgmon anchor the distance group. Blood is one of the most decorated women in school history, having won seven All-America awards her first three years as a Duck. She was the Pac-10 runner-up at 5,000 meters and also scored in the 1,500 meters in 2009 before earning All-America honors in the 5,000 with a runner-up finish at the NCAA Championships. She also earned All-America honors in cross country (10th), the indoor 3,000 meters (sixth) and mile (12th) as part of her quintuple All-America junior season. She capped her year by running a PR at the USA Track & Field Championships (15:38.61). Then the opened her senior year by winning the Pac-10 Cross Country championship in the fall.

Amber Purvis

Bridgmon was a two-time All-American for the Ducks last season, picking up honors in cross country and for her seventh place finish in the 10,000 meters at the NCAA Championships. She also ran fifth in that event at the Pac-10 Championships. Those two are also bolstered by the return of senior Bria Wetsch, a 2009 Pac-10 scorer in the 10,000 meters (seventh), senior Lauren Zaludek, junior Betsy Bies and sophomore Bronwyn Crossman. Both Zaludek and Crossman were solid in the fall, scoring for the Ducks at the Pac-10 cross country championships. Newcomers in the distances include freshmen Alexandra Jones, Melanie Thompson and Taylor Wallace. The steeplechase is in good hands with Michel, a junior and the current school record holder (9:35.69), who was a Pac-10 scorer and an NCAA Championships finalist a year ago. The Ducks also have senior Brooke Guiffre returning to offset the graduation of former school record holder Dana Buchanan.

Pole Vault Gergel, a junior, has positioned herself as one of the nation’s top vaulters and is on the verge of reaching an elite level after becoming just the third Duck to clear 14 feet. The three-time All-American set a PR of 14-2 in winning the 2009 Pac-10 championship. But Gergel is not alone on the runway, and may not have even been the most improved Duck vaulter of 2009. That distinction goes to junior Jordan Roskelley, who saw her PR improve more than a foot over the course of the season and she became a Pac-10 scorer for the first time, tying for fifth.

Throws Oregon’s biggest losses come in the throws with the graduation of two-time NCAA javelin champion Rachel Yurkovich, as well as Lucy Cridland, Megan Maloney and Ashley McCrea. All four scored at the Pac-10 meet, combining for 27 points, and three of the four, Yurkovich, Cridland and McCrea, were NCAA Championship qualifiers.

Claire Michel

The Ducks do have one experienced thrower returning in shot putter Rita Santibanez. The senior was sixth in the shot put at the Pac-10 Championships in 2009 and was also an NCAA Regional qualifier. Yurkovich, the four-time Pac-10 champion, and McCrea, who was third at the Pac-10 meet, leave a void in the javelin that may be best filled by Theisen, who owns the 10th-best throw in school history. Cridland was the Pac-10 runner-up and an NCAA Championships qualifier in the discus, while Maloney was sixth in the conference in the hammer. The Ducks will look to freshman Laura Bobek, a state champion from Astoria, and junior Sara Cole to fill the gaps in the throws.

Hurdles Sophomore Lyndsay Pearson anchors the hurdles and was a Pac-10 scorer in the 400 hurdles (sixth), an event the Ducks will need to overcome the graduation of fellow Pac-10 scorer Leah Worthen (eighth). School record holder Theisen leads the way in the 100 hurdles, which was the only event the Ducks didn’t register a point in at the 2009 Pac-10 Championships. Pearson also saw extensive racing at this distance last season. Sophomore Rebecca Rhodes rounds out the hurdles corps.

Mattie Bridgmon



Women’s History Top Outdoor Performances 192 Top Indoor Performances 194 NCAA History 195 NCAA All-Americans 196 Individual Honors 197 Confe...